It was the operated by the Anglican Church of Canada from its founding as the "Mechanics' Institute" (a day school for boys on the Six Nations of the Grand River reserve) in 1828 until 1969, when control was handed over to the Canadian federal government.
In 1831, the school began to function as a residential school for boys, and starting in 1834, girls were taken in as boarders as well. Children from Six Nations were sent there, along with some from the New Credit, and Moraviantown, Sarnia, Walpole Island, Muncey, Scugog, Stoney Point, Saugeen, Bay of Quinte and Kahnawake reserves.
While the school was originally nearby the Mohawk village, in 1837 the Canadian government ordered Six Nation residents to resettle south of the Grand River, kilometres from the school. Between 1854–1859, the building was destroyed by fire and rebuilt a few hundred metres from its original location. Around the same time, the school acquired more land, and farming became a prominent part of life for children at the school. In 1885, the year after the Indian Act made enrolment compulsory for Status Indian children under 16, the school began to accept students from reserves beyond Six Nations.
In 1903, the building was again destroyed by fire, and rebuilt the following year. In 1922, the management of the school was formally taken over by the Canadian government, though the Anglican church retained ownership, and the agreement required that the principal be Anglican. By 1955, enrolment reached 185 children.
In 1963, farming was discontinued as the children were now given a full day of education without requiring their manual labour. Enrolment decreased as schools were built in reserve throughout Ontario, and in 1970, the school was closed. Six Nations assumed ownership of the building the following year.
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