“Friends” of the Little White Schoolhouse


Lifetime Level ~ $10,000 and above


Founders Level ~ $5,000 to $9,999


Alvan Bovay Level ~ $2,500 to $4,999 - Bovay was the leader of the national movement to create a new party to fight slavery.


Jedhiah Bowen Level ~ $1,000 to $2,4999 - Bowen was Bovay’s chief supporter and a Democrat at the time.


Amos Loper Level ~ $500 - $999 - Loper was a leader in the local Whig Party at the time, and Bovay’s other chief supporter.


Jacob Woodruff Level ~ $100 to $499 - Woodruff was an original member of the Wisconsin Phalanx, a communalist organization central to the founding of Ripon.


Abram Thomas Level ~ Up to $99 - Thomas was a model citizen active in all aspects of his community’s development.


If you would like to become a "Friend" of The Little White Schoolhouse, click on the donate button below. We will be happy to add you to our list of treasured supporters!



If you prefer, please mail your donation by sending check or money order to the following address: Birthplace of the Republican Party P.O. Box 305 Ripon, Wisconsin 54971


Make an online donation via PayPal



Thank You for your kindness!


The “Little White Schoolhouse” in Ripon, Wisconsin is of major symbolic importance to both the citizens of Ripon and the nation as a whole. For Ripon, it was the focal point of the most dramatic and important even in its history when, in an extraordinarily bipartisan moment, local members of all three major political parties in the country – Whigs, Democrats, and Free Soilers met in this little schoolhouse to form the Republican Party as a movement to overthrow slavery in America. Their success points to the fact that in America, even small groups of active and determined citizens can accomplish great things. But the Schoolhouse is also an important symbol of America’s early commitment to free and universal primary education. For it is only with such education that ordinary people gain the self confidence and moral courage necessary to be the active citizens needed for a democratic republic to succeed. Ripon’s “Little White Schoolhouse” is open daily during the summer and by appointment at other times.


Each year it hosts education visits by school children who are given hands-on experience by professional teachers with primary education in a one-room school of the Midwestern prairies. It also receives thousands of visitors from all over the country who are met by highly trained docents able to relate the story of the creation of the Republican Party as well as the nature of education in the one-room schoolhouses of pioneer days. A small museum provides exhibits related to both pioneer education and the history of the Republican Party. While the School benefits from the support of many volunteers in the community it still requires a significant budget to stay open and to provide its array of educational services. Part of the funds it needs is raised through the extremely modest admission fee and the sale of souvenirs. But this is insufficient to cover costs. No financial help is sought or received from the Republican Party or from any governmental source. Hence, help is sought from ordinary citizens to support this symbol of the power of active citizenship through joining the “Friends of the Ripon Little White Schoolhouse” organization. “Friends” may contribute at any of the six annual giving levels listed below. The Founders level represents the year of the founding of the Republican Party and the other five levels are named after the five Ripon citizens who were elected to become the organizing committee for the Republican Party in Ripon.


2018 The Little White Schoolhouse is a 501(c)3