Our History

  • For additional information on the history of Colfax Elementary School, please visit this website.


         Colfax School served the community and students first grade through 11th grade graduation for almost two generations. Prior to the 1800's, the Colfax Community was known as the Dover Community. Early settlers came from Va. and Pa. due to favorable soil conditions and stayed to raise their families. During the early years, parents and neighbors educated the children. In 1771, small one room schools began to appear. Guilford County was the first NC County to establish graded schools in towns and rural areas. There were about 10 of these schools in and nearby the Colfax community. Teachers in these schools were paid by the parents of the students, and the schools were built by the men in the community.

         In 1875, a one room school house on nearby Cider Road was constructed.  It educated students in the Colfax community until 1904.  

    one room school
        In 1905 a white frame building was constructed on the current school property. During 1923-1924 a new school was built and in 1925, nine students graduated as the first class to complete eleven years of education at the Colfax Public School.  From 1924-1962, students attended a new brick twelve room school. Buses were used for the first time. Colfax School had 3 gray buses with seats around the walls of the bus and standing room in the middle. High School students served as drivers. 
    white frame

    red brick building

         From 1926-1930, unmarried teachers lived in the Strader house, a white house located beside the present gymnasium. Seven to eight teachers lived here at a time.  Unmarried teachers lived in this boarding house during their teaching tenure.

          In 1941, the Colfax baseball team won the Guilford County championship.  The Junior-Senior banquet was held at the Jefferson Room.
         In 1946, students were required to attend school through 12th grade for the first time. In 1955 a gymnasium was built where both the girl's team and boy's team played basketball games. Colfax students also played baseball and tennis.

         In 1962, the boys basketball team won the state championship.  On June 5, 1962, the final class of seniors graduated from Colfax High School. Northwest High School was opened followed by Northwest Middle School. The school now housed grades 1-6. Kindergarten was later added.

         In 1983, the red brick building was demolished the present school was built. As enrollment increased, the school was added on to and remodeled several times. At one time, there were 25 trailers on campus. More students were educated in the trailers than in the school building. The original gymnasium remains.
    1983 building
         In 1999, a book entitled Colfax Reflections was compiled and published by Gail Gray Lawson.  It serves as an invaluable resource to the community of Colfax.  
    Gail Lawson
    current school