Educating the Irish (At the Lake magazine)
In 1858, a few brave voices fought for the Woods School amid political turmoil. The largely Anglo-Saxon and Protestant community in Lake Geneva’s town center wanted little to do with the Irish immigrants living west of town (along today’s Highway 50 at Snake Road) in an area known as the “Irish Woods.” These Celtic and Catholic immigrants kept to themselves, farming the land and struggling to make a living. Faced with discrimination, residents of the Irish Woods petitioned for their own school district in 1857. A year later, they had a one-room, wooden schoolhouse all to themselves — the Woods School.