Oxford Orphanage

Older boys were trained in the woodworking, plumbing, and electrical departments. Early on, instructors taught winding motors and repairing equipment. Today the three shops have evolved into the present day maintenance department; students receive their respective training as they repair and maintain buildings on the campus.

The Oxford Orphanage School of Printing has greatly contributed to the Orphanage both in revenue and the reputation it built. The program today is much smaller than in years past, but continues to train students. Many an Orphanage graduate have left the home and have had little trouble finding employment because of their training in the Printing Department.

The largest vocational effort on the part of the Orphanage in size, if not in number, was the 400-acre farm. Farm hands and the boys in their charge turned the hillsides east of the college building into some of the most fertile tracts in the state. Progress began to pass the farm by, however. In the 1980s the farm switched to raising cattle, much more lucrative than the corn and wheat it had been producing, and provided milk to the Pine State Creamery. Today the farm buildings are boarded up, and the land is leased to a private contractor.

The farm road led the children to several points of interest besides the food, though. Several unused, hilly fields were excellent for sledding in the winter despite the muddy creek at the bottom of the hill, and in the summer older girls sunbathed on the "Oxford Orphanage beach" beneath the old railroad trestle. Other points of interest include the abandoned pig sty, and the huge rocks situated far back along the railroad tracks. The especially brave could venture to Miller's Pond, rumored to be haunted, and the "Indian Grave," actually a 60-plot graveyard, which mostly housed the bodies of children stricken with tuberculosis.


Allen Collenda (Size: 58 k)

Linotype Machine (Size: 193 k)

Joe Colenda (Size: 61 k)

The Farm (Size: 86 k)

Electrical Training, 1920 (Size: 43 k)

The Old Print Shop (Size: 84 k)

Printing Presses (Size: 85 k)

Roadwork (Size: 89 k)

Telegraph Room (Size: 42 k)