Located just off of the Town Green and steps away from the center of campus, the Old Schoolhouse serves as the home of Vermont Law School's Legal Writing Program. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the newly acquired and restored building further enhances the New England village charm of the VLS campus.
Built in 1853, the Old Schoolhouse served as South Royalton's first graded school until 1892, when it was moved to its current location to serve as a grange hall. Throughout the 20th Century the building saw a number of different uses, including a feed store, an insurance agency, and an apartment building.
The Law School bought the schoolhouse in 2008 to serve as the home of the Legal Writing Program. Following the purchase, VLS carefully restored the building, paying attention to the details of the schoolhouse's original design. One historical preservation consultant concluded that the restoration has "preserved and enhanced" the historic character of the building, and that the project has given the South Royalton Historic District a "prominent local landmark."
The building was inaugurated as the home of the Legal Writing Program at a reception held in October 2008. Ten offices, a conference room complete with locally crafted furniture, and three additional spaces now make up the interior that once echoed with the sounds of Royalton's children attending classes. And while historical details abound, including the original hardwood floors and staircase, the schoolhouse has been updated to meet the diverse needs of our sophisticated program.
Vermont Law School has stayed true to the Vermont tradition of fostering community through village life. The campus is a village within a village, now comprising 20 buildings centered around a green, near the banks of the White River. Its buildings are technologically state-of-the-art, while continuing to honor and protect Vermont's rich historical resources. The Old Schoolhouse is the latest example of this effort.