"Thank You" to all the Blanchard Volunteers that helped us at the Grange!
Grange Master, Jenett Pankoke Phone: (208) 437-3137
Family Activities Committee Chair
Treasurer - Robin Schlotthauer
Monthly business meetings for members are on SECOND Monday of month at 7:00 PM
Monthly Community Potlucks are on FOURTH Monday of the month at 6:30 PM
History of the Blanchard Grange #440
The Blanchard Grange building was originally a school house, built in 1905 by the school district. It was the first schoolhouse in Spirit Valley. Church services were held there and it was operated as the Blanchard Community Club for 20 plus years.
A brick two-story schoolhouse was built next to the old school (Grange). In 1922, Pete Young built the school and students moved into it on January 10, 1924. Unfortunately the school burned down in January of 1958. The students finished out the school year in the grange building and in the fall of that year they began going to school in Newport. The Spirit Valley school was open from 1888 to 1958. Today, students from Blanchard are bused to Idaho Hill Elementary School in Old Town, 12 miles away, and/or to Priest River schools, 22 miles away.
The Blanchard Grange has been an active chapter of the national Farmers Grange since it was organized and chartered on September 15, 1947. The first master was Oscar Rogstad. The grange purchased the building from the school district on December 22, 1959 for a price of $10. The building was expanded and doubled in size.
Even with the decline of farming in the area, the Blanchard Grange still remains involved with agricultural endeavors, community activities and the building serves as a polling place for the Blanchard area voters. Members of the grange hold monthly meetings on the 2nd and 4th Monday of every month. The second Monday is their business meeting starting at 7 PM and the fourth Monday is their social potluck meeting starting at 6:30 PM. Several grange sponsored events are held annually for the benefit of the Blanchard community. Activities presently include refurbishing the grange building and the grounds. The Blanchard Grange today, remains as a major focal point of our town.
Although there have been many grange masters who have dedicated their service over the years, the Robert’s family was involved with grange activities for nearly three generations. Marshall Roberts (Don Robert’s father) was active in politics and served on the school board. He was the secretary of the grange for 16 years and was the second master, serving in that capacity for 2 years. Don Roberts (son of Marshall and Amelia) and Don’s wife Marlene have followed in his parent’s footsteps. Don was grand master for 10 years. Marlene has served for 9 years as secretary and is the voter registrar for the Blanchard area. Their daughter-in-law, Becky also served as master for several years.