• (The following text in italics is from the book Truaxton Truago Trenton, Bicentennial Book Committee, 1979)

    In the 1830's, a small crude schoolhouse was built of logs on the banks of the Detroit River. This little log building was about twenty by twenty-four feet, had seats along the wall in the form of benches and in the center of the room stood a large stove near which the master had his desk and all the pupils faced him. This building was used for many years but the time came when more room was needed.

    A temporary log structure was built at the corner of Washington (Jefferson Avenue) and Elm Street and was painted bright yellow. This was soon replaced by a frame schoolhouse near the other building and was called the North School.

    In the early 1870's, another school, the South School, a two story building was built at the south end of town below Washington Street (Jefferson Avenue) between the old cemetery and Slocum's Island. School board minutes of September, 1876 moved to have a graded school system and upper classes through eight grade were held here in South School.

    At the turn of the century, the school population was increasing so rapidly that a school was built at the corner of St. Joseph and Third Street. Eleven years later three rooms were added. In 1917 the bond issue for a new school was defeated. From that year until 1923 it was necessary to construct portables for the continually increasing school population. In 1923, Slocum-Truax High School was built.

    Since the old high school was being used for the elementary grades and was filled to capacity, provisions were made for a new grade building. The entire block bounded by Third and Fourth Streets, St. Joseph Avenue and Pine Street (West Road) was purchased and on the corner of Pine and Third, the first unit of the Washington Grade School was completed in December, 1929. The school site cost $65,482 and the eight room building was said to have cost $65,136. Further additions were made to the "New Elementary School", as it was also called at a cost of $146,000. About half of this money was a Federal contribution as a Public Works Act project and the other money was furnished by the people of Trenton. The school was formally dedicated on January 20, 1937 and the name was changed to the G. E. Strohm School at that time. Total school enrollment in 1937 was 1,101 and the student capacity of Strohm was 350.

    The old St. Joseph Street Building was used as a school in one way or another from 1900 to 1961. From 1900 to 1924, when Slocum-Truax was opened, it was used for all twelve grades. From 1924 to 1929, it was an elementary and junior high and from 1929 to 1959, it was used as a junior high school. In 1963, the old red building that had cost $10,000 to build in 1900 was torn down and a new kindergarten wing was added to the north end of Strohm School.

    After Slocum-Truax was built in 1923 at a cost of $165,000; opened in 1924 for students and the swimming pool completed in 1929, the school system seemed adequate until the beginning of the 1950's when Trenton's population took a tremendous jump. It is difficult to determine the exact cause for this except that it was shortly following the close of World War II and many people seemed to be interested in moving to the suburbs, plus the fact that a new Chrysler plant was in the process of opening in Trenton with opportunities for employment for many. At any rate this huge increase in students necessitated the construction of new schools.

    The first new school building that went up was what is now Trenton High School but in September, 1953 it had 550 pupils attending elementary classes on a temporary basis until completion of Hedke, Anderson, Foley and Owen Elementary Schools which all were finished in the late 1950's.

    In 1959, Slocum-Truax became a junior high school for seventh and eighth graders and the school on West Rd. was opened to high school students. It was during this time that a fine athletic facility was completed and the athletic field was named in honor of Walter "Red" Farrer, who was a member of the Trenton School system from 1926 to 1966 and was a teacher, assistant principal of Trenton High, principal of Slocum-Truax Junior High, athletic director and coach.

    A new housing development in the south end of Trenton required a new elementary school so Taylor School was built and opened in 1968. About this same time, it was decided to introduce a new concept in the Trenton Schools of the middle school which includes sixth, seventh and eight graders. In view of the fact that Slocum-Truax was not large enough to accommodate these three grades, Monguagon School was opened in 1971.