The Building of McLeansboro|
(Township) High School Building
From McLeansboro Times 1927-1929
Compiled by Doris Nelson
Feb. 24, 1927 - TOWNSHIP H.S. PETITION FILED
Vote Will Be Taken On Proposition At Regular Town Election, Tuesday, April 5th.
At a recent meeting of the local Board of Education the circulation of a petition asking for a vote on establishing a township high school here was authorized. The petition was circulated this week and has been duly filed with Henderson H. Powell, school treasurer, for McLeansboro township. It will now become his duty to advertise and provide for a vote on the proposition at the next regular town election which will be held Tuesday, April 5th.That a township high school is badly needed here to provide more room and ample education facilities for our rapidly growing high school will be conceded by all fair and forward-looking citizens. As the situation now stands not only the high school but also the grades are seriously hampered in their work by the present crowded condition. Nothing short of a new building will relieve this situation to any extent for any length of time. The only argument that can be advanced against a township high school is that it will cost something to build it.Any public improvement costs money, but it all comes back to the community in increased volume by enhancing the value of real estate and by making the community a more desirable place in which to live. Every progressive citizen in the community should work for a township high school.As further evidence of the urgent need of a township high school we quote Superintendent J. B. Boswell on the immediate needs of the McLeansboro high school to take care of its present enrollment:"The seating capacity of the study hall is 175, although about 200 are crowded into it. In order to do this, the aisles are reduced to nearly one-half the width required by law. About eighty students are seated in the class rooms. We need a study hall large enough to seat the entire enrollment. We have enrolled this year approximately 285 students, which is over 100 more than we can seat in the present study hall." "We have six classrooms by using two of the grade rooms. We need at least three more classrooms. We need fully twice as much science laboratory space as we now have. We have no dark room, no chemical room, no lecture room, all of which are essential to the successful teaching of science subjects." "Our library room is a mere make-shift, 12 by 14 feet. It should be at least 25 by 25 feet, to allow space for students to be seated at tables to do individual reference reading." "We have no gymnasium. We can do nothing definite or systematic in the way of physical training. In a rented hall away from the school building, only a small fraction of our students can receive physical training, and that in an irregular, confusing and inefficient manner." "To be normally efficient, with the present enrollment, the McLeansboro High School stands in immediate need of the following expansions in the way of room:
1. A study hall twice the size of the present one.
2. One-third more classrooms than we now have.
3. Nearly three times as much science space as we now have.
4. Over three times as much library space.
5. A good gymnasium.
6. Numerous other details in the way of room and equipment that are essential to the successful operation of a modern high school."
March 17, 1927 - NOTICES OF TOWNSHIP HIGH SCHOOL ELECTION
Election notices have been posted this week in ten places in McLeansboro township, informing the voters that an election will be held in the office of the Daily-Aydt Motor Co., on Tuesday, April 5th, for the purpose of voting "for" or "against" the proposition to establish a township high school for said township. So far no particular interest is being manifested in the proposition. This is the fourth time it has been submitted to the voters of the township. It is needless to state that it was voted down each time.
No one will deny the necessity of such an institution in our midst, as our high school is crowded to overflowing. The only excuse that any one can offer for opposing the proposition is the matter of increased taxation. That will be sufficient to defeat the proposition, unless its sponsors get busy and work valiantly for its success.
March 31, 1927 - TOWNSHIP HIGH SCHOOL QUESTION WILL BE SUBMITTED TO VOTERS NEXT TUESDAY
On April 5, 1927, the taxpayers of McLeansboro township are to vote on the proposition to establish a Township High School. It is only fair and right that each taxpayer should know as nearly as possible the reasons for submitting the proposition to a vote at this time, and also what the probable cost would be. The purpose of this article is to try to answer those questions. In the preparation of this article, the files of the County Clerk's office and the school records of McLeansboro School District No. 39, have been used as a basis for statistical facts.
Figures Disprove The Assertion That Taxes Will Be Excessive. The Question Now Is, "Can We Afford Not To Build."
1. Do we need a township high school building?
2. What would be the probable cost?
3. Can we afford to build?In McLeansboro School District No. 39, we are now using all the high school space in our building, and two additional rooms that belong to the grades, and which should be in use by the grades at this time. Still we lack rooms to take care of from 85 to 100 high school students in anything like an efficient manner. For want of room, we are offering but little in the way of vocational courses. We offer no agriculture, no domestic science, no manual training, although these subjects are among the number most responsive to the interests and needs of our community. The township and community high schools all about us are offering these courses, as for instance, Opdyke, Enfield, Crossville, Carmi, Ridgway, Equality, Eldorado and Benton. Our boys and girls are denied these advantages because of lack of room.We submit the following extracts from the report of Hon. John Calvin Hanna, High School Supervisor and Inspector for the State Department of Public Instruction who also inspects for the University of Illinois, and who made an inspection of the McLeansboro High School in February 22, 1927."Building very much over-crowded. The assembly room will not accommodate the enrollment by 85 pupils. New building badly needed. School suffers seriously. Bad lighting because of over-crowding. Library not a good location, nor adequate in room. A township high school district would solve all the present difficulties of the school. A poor room for the laboratory. All science classes are too large for doing the best work. Instruction much handicapped for lack of room. No vocational work of any kind can be undertaken (except shorthand and typewriting) because of lack of room."Similar recommendations to the above have been coming from both the State Department of Public Instruction and from the University of Illinois, for the past two or three years. They are becoming impatient because of our failure to provide sufficient room for the rapid growth of our high school, and now they recognize and accredit us for one year at a time, instead of the regular term of two years, for the sole reason, lack of room. Their next step will be to cut us off entirely, and that would mean that this school would automatically lost about 160 tuition students from this and other townships in Hamilton county, and that these students would be compelled to go away from home in order to attend high school. This would certainly work a financial hardship on the parents of these children, especially on those whose children reside in McLeansboro township, and who can now come here to high school, and return home each day. We are standing, as it were, with our backs to the wall. It is a serious situation.What would a township high school building cost? After having consulted some eight or ten reliable architects, it appears that a building costing in the neighborhood of $75,000 would just about meet the present needs of the school. By issuing bonds for that amount, payable in twenty annual installments, would mean that $3,750.00 plus interest would have to be paid by the township each year for twenty years. What would this mean to the taxpayer? Since an acre of land forms a convenient unit-value in which to estimate a tax, let us take the average assessed valuation of one acre of land in McLeansboro township, which is a little less that $15.00, and calculate the amount of tax that would have to be paid annually on one acre. (The files of the County Clerk of Hamilton county show that 31,848 acres are assessed in McLeansboro township at an assessed valuation of $302,270.00). The assessed valuation of McLeansboro township is $1,269,809, and as before stated, the amount to paid annually would be $3,750. Therefore, the rate would be a little less than 3 mills. The tax then, on $15,000, the average assessed valuation of one acre, would be not quite 4 ½ cents. The interest on the bonds would probably raise this to 9 cents per acre. Therefore, the building would cost the farmer not to exceed 9 cents per acre annually for twenty years.
Next comes the cost of maintenance. With a new building, our first year's enrollment would undoubtedly reach 100, with a per capital cost of $95.00). This means, then, that the total cost of maintaining the school for one year would be $28,500. (The cost of running our present high school is about $28,000 annually). Taxpayers residing within McLeansboro township but who are outside of the limits of the present McLeansboro school district are paying this year a non-high school rate of 5.3 mills. If a township high school is voted in, the non-high school tax within McLeansboro township would by law automatically cease. This high school district now collects annually about $15,000 in tuitions, which is paid by taxpayers residing in non-high school territory. If a township high school were established, the increase in enrollment would within a year or two bring these tuitions up to $18,000 annually, which of course, would be used to maintain the high school. Now, let us take the 5.3 mills, the present non-high school rate, and make it the rate in the new township high school district, and see how near this rate, together with the $18,000 of tuitions, will come to paying the annual cost of the new school. This 5.3 mills on $1,209,809, the assessed valuation of McLeansboro township, will bring $7,364 to use toward the maintenance of the new high school. Now, let us add our $18,000 in tuitions to our $7,364 (the equivalent of our present non-high school rate) and we have $25,364, which is only $3,136 short of the $28,000, the total cost of maintenance for one year. A rate of 2 ½ mills will more than bring in this amount, which rate on $15,000, the averaged assessed valuation of one acre, will yield a tax of 3 ¼ cents per acre. Nine cents per acre, the cost of building, plus 3 ¼ cents, the cost of maintenance, gives a total cost of 12 ¼ cents which represents the probable cost per year of building and maintaining a township high school. This is only 4 cents more per acre than is now being paid in non-high school tax which is 8.7 cents per acre. Finally, can we afford to build? These calculations seem to suggest that we change the question to read, ""an we afford not to build?"" Let the voters answer the question at the polls on Tuesday, April 5. What will your answer be?
April 7, 1927 - TOWNSHIP HIGH SCHOOL PROPOSITION CARRIES NEARLY 2 TO 1The wheels of progress in McLeansboro township are turning, and better educational facilities for our children are assured. This was evidenced by the surprising vote cast in the township election last Tuesday, which the proposition to establish a township high school carried by a majority of 316 voters, a rate of nearly 2 to 1. There were 677 votes cast for the proposition and 361 against it.
The opening of the polls Tuesday morning was greeted with despondency by a great many of the backers of the proposition, as it was generally believed that its chances of carrying were very slim. This belief was due to the talk circulated that the farmers as a whole throughout the township were bitterly against the proposition. However, this proved to be a decided mistake as the election progressed, inasmuch as fully fifty per cent of our rural friends when they came into vote expressed themselves as very favorably disposed to the new high school.
As a result of this a great deal of enthusiasm and excitement was gradually worked up and by noon it was generally conceded that victory was in the air. The climax came shortly after one o'clock, when five hundred McLeansboro school children paraded the streets, carrying banners which pleaded for better educational facilities. The election Tuesday marked the fourth time that the proposition to establish a township high school in McLeansboro township has been voted on during the past twenty-five years. The last election was held about ten years ago, and the proposition was defeated at that time by only eight votes. It now becomes the duty of the township treasurer to call an election within thirty days for the purpose of electing a township high school board of education consisting of five members who shall after their election determine by lot, at their first meeting, the length of time each shall serve. Two of the members shall serve for one year, two for two years and one for three years from the second Saturday of April next, preceding their election. At the expiration of the term of office of any member or members, a successor or successors shall be elected, each of whom shall serve for three years. The nominations of candidates for members of the board of education shall be made only by petition. All petitions shall be filed with the township treasurer at least ten days before the day of the election. All petitions shall be signed by at least fifty legal voters. The names of the candidates shall be printed on the ballot in the order in which they are filed. Within ten days after the election, the members of the township high school board of education shall meet and organize by electing one of their members president and by electing a secretary. The township high school board of education after organizing will take full charge of the high school situation and will no doubt submit in due time the question of site and bond issue, each of which must be determined by one or more elections, according to conditions. This board will take over the high school at the end of the present school year, employ teachers, make a levy, and have general control of the same thereafter.
Much Enthusiasm and Excitement Marked Election, Which Proved That McLeansboro Township Is For Progress and Better Educational Facilities.
April 14, 1927 - TOWNSHIP HIGH SCHOOL BOARD OF EDUCATIONThe notice of election for a township high school board of education on Saturday afternoon, April 23rd, having been duly posted and the time limit for filing nominating petitions having expired, there appears to be nine candidates in the field for the five positions on the board. These candidates are as follows: O. P. Harper, L. E. Lambert, H. W. Adams, Harry Ward, C. C. Wright, D. H. Knight, W. D. Sharpe, W. A. Tevis, A. L. Sloan and J. O. Kelley. All of the candidates are find fellows, but all cannot be elected. Therefore regardless of who may be elected from McLeansboro, it is earnestly hoped by all true friends of the high school that Harry Ward and L. E. Lambert will be elected in order to give the farmers of the township their just and fair representation on the board.
Apri. 28, 1927 - HIGH SCHOOL BOARD ELECTED SATURDAYAt the township high school election held here last Saturday, O. P. Harper 389, L. E. Lambert 495, Harry Ward 527, C. C. Wright 331, H. W. Adams 312, D. H. Knight 282, W. D. Sharpe 255, W. E. Tevis 200, A. L. Sloan 220, J. O. Kelley 191. The victorious candidates held their first meeting Tuesday night for the purpose of organizing. C. C. Wright was elected President and O. P. Harper Secretary of the Board. Lots were cast to determine the length of term to be served by each member of the Board and resulted as follows: 3-year term, Harry Ward; 2-year terms, L. E. Lambert and H. W. Adams; 1-year terms, C. C. Wright and O. P. Harper. The Board will meet again within the next few days to take up the matter of setting a date for a bond election for the building of a township high school, and conducting such other business that may come before it.
Township High School Board Elected and Organization Has Been Perfected
May 12, 1927 - HIGH SCHOOL BOND ELECTIONAt a meeting of the McLeansboro Township High School Board of Education held Tuesday night, Saturday, May 21, was set as the date for an election to be held for the purpose of voting "for" or "against" the proposition to issue bonds of Township High School District No. 53 in Township Number Five (5) South, Range Number Six (6) East of the 3rd P. M. in the County of Hamilton and State of Illinois, to the amount of $60,000, at a rate not to exceed 5 ½ % per annum from date, interest payable semi-annually, and for the purpose of voting "for" or "against" the proposition to build a new school house in said district. This action was taken by the Board of Education in pursuance of a petition filed, and upon which the signatures of approximately 400 votes of McLeansboro township were affixed. The bonds will be issued in three series of three, four and five thousand dollars, there being five of each. The first of these $3,000 bonds will mature on August 1, 1932, and each year thereafter until August 1, 1936, when the last of the $3,000 bonds will mature. The first of the $4,000 bonds will mature on August 1, 1927, and the last on August 1, 1941. The first of the $5,000 bonds will mature on Aug. 1, 1942, and the last on August 1, 1946.
The sum of $60,000 is the largest amount for which the township can be bonded for the erection of a high school building. Plans have been submitted by two well known architectural firms, N. S. Spencer of Chicago, and Gill & Jacksons of Murphysboro, Ill., and it is the opinion of these architects that a building that will meet the needs of the township for a number of years to come can be erected for the above sum.Don't fail to vote "for" the bond issue, and "for" the proposition to build a new school house, on Saturday, May 21st.
Township High School Board of Education Sets May 21 As Date of Bond Election
May 26, 1927 - TWP. HIGH SCHOOL PROPOSITIONS CARRY
At the special school election held here last Saturday afternoon by the McLeansboro Township High School Board of Education, the proposition to issue bonds in the sum of $60,000 carried by a majority of 107 votes, while the proposition to build a new school house was carried by a majority of 82. The following is the vote for and against the propositions. For the proposition to issue bonds, 310.
Next Step Will Be Selection of Site For New School Building
Against the proposition to issue bonds, 203.
For the proposition to build a school house, 286.
Against the proposition to build a school house, 204. The next step to be taken by the township high school board of education is to hold an election for the purpose of selecting a site for the new school building. Four sites which have been most prominent in public discussions are as follows: The Jas. R. Campbell and Legion property on South Pearl street, one block west of the public square; the F. R. Wilson property on West Randolph street, east of the fair grounds; the J. C. Hall property on South Jackson street, just south of the city limits; and the O. H. Hyatt property, northeast of the city limits. Of these four sites, only one has been officially submitted to the Board. This is the Campbell and American Legion property. Whether or not any of the other sites will be submitted has not been learned.
June 2, 1927 - PROPOSED HIGH SCHOOL SITESThe proposed sites for the new township high school building to be erected for McLeansboro Township have been officially submitted to the Board of Education and are as follows:
Three School Sites Will Be Submitted For a Vote At Special Election On June 11th.
The Campbell property on South Pearl street directly west of the public square, which includes the American Legion lot, all amounting to 2.56 acres for a consideration of $12,500.
The F. R. Wilson site just south of Route 14, and directly west of the Hard Road Service Station amounting to six acres for a consideration of $1500.
The J. C. Hall site south of town just outside of the city limits and on the east side of the Hoodville Road amounting to nine acres, the only consideration or stipulation being that Mr. J. C. Hall is to have the right to name the school building.Today was the last day for submitting sites as the election to decide same will be held on Saturday, June 11th.
June 9, 1927 - FIGHT FOR SCHOOL SITES WAXES HOT
The special school election to be held here next Saturday for the purpose of selecting a site on which to build the new township high school promises to be one of the most interesting elections of the year.
Three sites will be submitted to the citizens of McLeansboro township at this election, and according to their respective sponsors, each has many qualifications, which will no doubt make it very hard for the voters to determine which will be the best. As a result there has been much controversy in regard to the propositions and many arguments pro and con by the voters as the election draws near. The backers of each site are making determined stands to put over their respective propositions and the result will no doubt be that none of the three sites will receive a majority. This will necessitate the calling of a second election and the submitting of the two sites that receive the highest votes in Saturday's election. The three sites are as follows: The Campbell property, one block west of the public square; the Wilson property, located on the west hard road; and the Hall property, on South Jackson street.
Voters Are In Quandary As To Which Site Will Make Best Location For New School
June 16, 1927 - SCHOOL SITE REMAINS UNCHOSENThe Special school election held here last Saturday afternoon for the purpose of selecting a site for the McLeansboro township high school proved to be very unsatisfactory to the backers of the various site propositions in that no one of the three sites received a majority. Likewise the proposition to give the Board of Education the right to purchase a site failed to carry, in that it did not receive a majority of the votes polled. Despite the fact that none of the sites carried, the election was perhaps one of the most interesting and hotly contested of any held here in recent years. Many workers were in the field and as a result an exceptionally large vote was polled, practically the total vote of the township. The vote was as follows: Campbell site, 459; Hall site, 396; Wilson site, 264. For proposition to give the Board of Education the right to purchase a site, 445; against, 323. As a result of Saturday's election, it will not be necessary for the Board of Education to call another election at any time it sees fit, which will probably be within the next two weeks, submitting the two sites that received the highest vote. Of these two sites, the Hall site is proposed as a gift by Mr. John C. Hall, the only stipulation being that he be given the right to name the township high school. It consists of nine acres and is located at the end of South Jackson street, adjoining the city limits. The Campbell site, is the old homestead of the late Gen. James R. Campbell, consisting of two and one-half acres, and is located one block west of the public square, and is offered for a consideration of $12,500. Both of the above sites have many advantages, according to their sponsors, and in view of the vote in the recent election, it is probable that the next election will be even more closely contested.
Site Election Hotly Contested And Results In No Decision
June 23, 1927 - SCHOOL BOARD MARKING TIME
Contrary to the general belief that a second school site election would be held here within the next few weeks, no date has been set at this time. No meeting of the Board of Education has been called, and members thereof have expressed the belief that it would be better to let the matter rest for a time inasmuch as the Board would be in no position to build in the immediate future even if a site were selected. An important feature of the next election will be the proposition to give the Board the right to purchase a site. It has been pointed out that the Board could not lawfully accept a deed to any site, unless there was a monetary consideration.
August 25, 1927 - VOTERS SELECT SCHOOL SITEAt the special school election held here last Saturday afternoon, the Campbell and American Legion property, located on Pearl street one block west of the public square, was officially chosen as the site for the McLeansboro Township High School after a very spirited contest. A total vote of 1157 was case and the official vote was as follows: Campbell site, 669; Hall site, 488. The consideration for the Campbell property, which consists of two and one-half acres, will be $12,500. The Hall site, which is located at the end of South Jackson street and consists of nine acres, was to have been given free by Mr. John C. Hall, who reserved the right to name the high school. However, from the results of the election it was apparently the opinion of the majority of the voters that it would cost more to improve the Hall property than to buy the already improved Campbell property. As a result of Saturday's election the high school board met Monday night to complete their records and endorse the minutes of previous meetings. Other business of the evening consisted of an order by the Board for the purchase of twelve new typewriters for the commercial department of the high school, and the appointment of a committee to purchase needed school furniture. It is planned by the Board to equip two or three rooms of the old Campbell residence for the temporary use of the high school, provided the overflow this year makes such an act necessary. The remainder of the meeting was taken up by an interview with Architect N. S. Spencer of Chicago, who discussed at length with the Board the most feasible plans and building specifications. However, no agreement was reached with Mr. Spencer, nor was the matter of an agreement discussed. In fact no action of any kind was taken by the Board in regard to building plans or the issuing of bonds. It is not likely that these matters will receive the entire attention of the Board until the new township high school has been successfully launched upon the present school year.
Spirited Election Results In Selection Of The Campbell Property
January 12, 1928 - WORK ON HIGH SCHOOL TO START IN SPRINGAt a meeting of the Board of Education for District No. 58 held here last Wednesday night, January 4, a room plan for the new McLeansboro Township High School building was submitted by the Harry H. Boyle & Co., of Evansville, Ind., which firm of architects has been employed by the Board.
The plans were gone over and thoroughly discussed by the Board and members of the high school faculty, and were tentatively accepted, although several changes were suggested and will be made. The revisions are now being worked out by the architects and a complete set of plans will be presented for the approval of the Board in the near future. According to members of the Board, the building will have three floors, including the basement, and will be modern in every respect. The auditorium will be located on the third floor and will have a seating capacity of 325. The gymnasium, with a minimum seating capacity of about 750, will be located directly under the auditorium and will occupy two floors. The number of class rooms has not been definitely determined, however, they will be so arranged that agriculture, domestic science and manual training may be included in the curriculum of the school at any time. A rough estimate is said to place the cost of the building in the neighborhood of $60,000. According to C. C. Wright, president of the Board, work on the new school building will very likely be started early in the spring. The building will be located on the Campbell site, one block west of the public square. The site contains two and one-half acres of ground, and it is thought that the south part of this will be used for an athletic field.
Plans Being Prepared by Well Known Evansville Firm of Architects
February 9, 1928 - HIGH SCHOOL PLANS APPROVED
At a meeting of the McLeansboro Township High School Board here Saturday, the Harry H. Boyle & Co., of Evansville, Ind., submitted final plans for the new township high school building, and they were approved by the Board. The contract for the building will be let about March 1. According to the plans, the building will be of the T type, which is very popular throughout the country, due to the fact that it can be easily enlarged at any time. The estimated cost is approximately $60,000. It is understood that the plans call for sixteen class rooms, laboratory, gymnasium, auditorium and all modern conveniences, and are so arranged that agriculture, domestic science and manual training may be added to the curriculum of the school. The seating capacity of the auditorium will be about 350, while the gymnasium will seat between 700 and 800. The building will be located on the site of the residence of the late General James R. Campbell, which was purchased by the township, and will face east on Pearl street. The gymnasium will occupy two floors, while the auditorium will be located on the top floor of the base of the T. The class rooms will compose the wings. The work of razing the old Campbell residence to clear the site for the new school building was started this week.
Contracts Will Be Let About March 1. Campbell Residence Now Being Razed
February 16, 1928 - AN OLD LANDMARK DISAPPEARING by J. Wilson JonesWorkmen are now engaged in the task of wrecking about the last of the really old landmarks of this city, viz: The two-story brick dwelling house just west of Pearl street, known as the Rickord residence, and later as the Campbell home. The razing of this ancient structure is preparatory to building the elegant new township high school, voted some time ago. It is not known just the exact date, even the year, when Wm. Rickord built his fine residence out in the woods, as we may truthfully say, for all that part of McLeansboro west of Pearl street was then in various kinds of timber, mostly black oak, some hickory, ash, etc. But the older citizens say it was built before the war - that is the War of the Rebellion; so it may have been some time in the 50's. Mr. Rickord was an Englishman, but withal, a very nice, high toned gentleman. He married Miss Sophronia Lockhart, sister to T. L. And J. H. Lockhart. She was an exceptionally fine lady and was considered quite handsome. As for the building itself, there is not much to be said except that it was about the 3rd brick building erected in McLeansboro, excepting the old courthouse which was destroyed by fire 30 or 40 years ago. The front rooms of the Lindell Hotel composed what is perhaps the oldest dwelling in McLeansboro. Mr. Rickord started the first bank in McLeansboro, and issued a kind of private check or note, a kind of "promise to pay" with his name printed at the bottom. Of course, they were not legal tender, but that was long before the present banking laws were thought of. Mr. Rickord died in this building in about the year 1878, and it was sold at Master's sale, and bought by the late General James R. Campbell, who occupied it until his death.
General Campbell's father, John Campbell, died in the building, as did Dr. V. S. Benson, the father of Mrs. Campbell. The building was always well taken care of and some additions built after the original. It is said to be constructed of the very best material and is still in a fine state of preservation. It seems a pity to wreck so fine a dwelling as this, for it was considered to be almost a palace at first, and was the talk of the community everywhere.
May 3, 1928 - LET CONTRACT FOR HIGH SCHOOLAt a meeting of the High School Board for District No. 58, held here Wednesday afternoon in connection with the Harry E. Boyle & Co., of Evansville, Ind., the firm of architects who drew the plans, bids were received on the proposed construction of a township high school building in this city for McLeansboro township. The Board met at 1:30 p.m., and after inspection and deliberate consideration of the bids under the advisement of Mr. Boyle, adjourned at 5:30 p.m., announcing the following awards:
Brannon & Parker of Carmi, Low Bidders On Township H. S. Building
The general contract for the construction of the building was awarded to Branson & Parker of Carmi, Ill., their bid being $46,150.00.
The plumbing contract was awarded to E. F. Weilt of Mt. Vernon, Illinois, their bid being $2,494.95.
The heating contract was awarded to the Tri State Heating Co., of Evansville, Indiana, who submitted a bid of $5,070.00.
The wiring contract was awarded to E. F. Weilt of Mt. Vernon, Illinois Their bid was $1199.00.Prior to this meeting, the Board met and elected John Land of Enfield, to fill the vacancy in the high school faculty, as athletic director and teacher. Mr. Land has accepted the position.
May 17, 1928 - EXCAVATING FOR SCHOOL BUILDINGThe work of excavating for the basement and foundation of the new McLeansboro Township High School building was started last week, and is progressing rapidly. According to Terril Harper, who is supervising the work for the Harry H. Boyle & Co., architects of Evansville, Ind., the first concrete will be poured the first of next week, after which the work will be carried along in accordance with the official plans. The firm of Brannon & Prather of Carmi, have the contract for the building and both Mr. Brannon and Mr. Parker are on the job supervising the work, and are speeding it along as fast as possible. It is planned at this time to have the building ready for occupancy by next December.
Work Progressing Rapidly And First Concrete Will Be Poured Next Week
July 12, 1928 - TERRILL HARPER DIED SUDDENLY
Terrill Harper, aged 36, one of McLeansboro's most prominent and brilliant young men, died at his home in this city Tuesday at noon following a long illness. He suffered several hemorrhages Tuesday morning and his condition gradually grew weaker until the end came at about the noon hour. He is survived by his grief stricken wife and little daughter. Mr. Harper, who was an employee of the government, served as rural mail carrier on Route 10 out of the McLeansboro Post Office for several years. However, for the past two years, due to failing health, he was unable to carry on his work. He returned recently from the hospital at Evansville, Ind., where he spent the past several weeks, and was believed to be on the high road to recovery. In fact Mr. Harper told several of his friends that he would be able to return to his work within a few days, and his sudden death came as a distinct shock and is deeply felt by the entire community. During Mr. Harper's spare time he worked as a draftsman, and drew the plans for many of McLeansboro's modern homes. He assisted in drawing the plans for the new McLeansboro Township High School, and had been employed by the architect in charge to supervise the construction of the building.The fact that Mr. Harper possessed high ideals and a great ambition was well known by his many friends. His education as a draftsman was acquired solely by his own strenuous efforts. He never attended a trade school, and completed his course wholly by home study, and burned midnight oil on many occasion in mastering his subject. At the time of his death he was rated as a highly proficient architect by the building trades. Funeral services will be conducted at the home by Rev. Henry Kello of Carmi this afternoon (Thursday) at 3 o'clock.
Passing Of Prominent Young Man Grieves Entire Community
July 12, 1928 - PROGRESS ON THE HIGH SCHOOL BUILDINGAs we go to press, eight bricklayers are at work on the foundation walls of the new township high school building, and at the progress they are making the walls will soon be above the ground level, after which rains will not tend to delay the work of construction as they did during June.
July 19, 1928 - PROGRESS ON SCHOOL BUILDINGThe construction of the new high school building is going steadily forward, although work was suspended last week for a few days on account of the heavy rain. The basement walls will be completed within another week if the weather continues fair and favorable, after which the progress of construction will be more rapid.
August 16, 1928 - SCHOOL BUILDING GOING UP RAPIDLYThe construction of the new McLeansboro township high school building is rapidly reaching an imposing stage, or in other words has reached the point where the average person can gain a definite idea of what is being accomplished. The foundation or basement walls and most of the first story walls have been erected, and work on the second story walls will be started next week. The first story walls have reached the stage where they are now ready for the placing of the heavy supporting steel. This work will be completed this week. The supporting steel for the large 80-foot gymnasium will consist of three "I" beams, 48 feet long and 28 inches wide. There will be no supporting pillars in the gymnasium, which is located directly under the auditorium. The stone work for the front of the building is now being placed and will in all probability be completed this week. However, this work has been delayed owing to the fact that the material has not been here long enough to be cut. With the placing of this stone work, the walls of the building are assuming that beauty which lies in simplicity. In fact it is the opinion of many that when the new building is completed it will be one of the most beautiful in southern Illinois, and will be larger than the Carmi township high school building. Brannon & Parker, contractors for the building, are pushing the work forward as rapidly as possible, and hope to have their work completed by the first of December. Between twenty-five and thirty men are engaged daily in the construction work, including ten brick masons. The contractors are to be commended on the fact that they are employing all home labor as far as it is possible to do so. According to members of the School Board for District No. 58, and several of our citizens who are experienced in construction work, the district is getting a real bargain in the new building, inasmuch as the contractors are putting the very best of materials into the structure along with fine workmanship. The plans are being carried out to the letter, and it is the consensus of opinion that McLeansboro township will soon have a high school building of which it may justly be proud.
First Story Walls Have Been Erected And Work On Second Story Will Start Next Week
August 23, 1928 - SCHOOLS WILL OPEN SEPT. 3RDThe McLeansboro Township High School and the McLeansboro Grade Schools will open on Monday, September 3, 1928. Any child who is eligible to enter either the grades or the high school is expected to register on the first day. The pupils will be asked to fill out a registration card with the following data: Name in full, Address, Parent's name, Parent's address, Telephone number, Age, Date of birth, Name and number of home school district, Number of home township. Each pupil should be able to give this data. The enrollment of the high school is expected to be the largest it has ever been and the Board of Education is making every effort possible to have the new building completed by the second semester. This building will be one of the most up to date high schools in southern Illinois and will be large enough to accommodate at least 500 students. The faculty will have several new faces this year, but the Board has been successful in securing competent teachers, and all are specially prepared to teach their particular field of subjects. Every teacher has had experience. The following is a list of the faculty for the coming year:
All Eligible Children Are Expected To Register On The First Day
E. S. Stuteville, Superintendent and Principal.
John W. Epley, assistant principal, Mathematics and Science.
John Land, Coach, Science and History.
Marie Threlkeld, English and History.
Agnes Carney, Mathematics and English.
Irene Blades, History, English, etc.
Ralph Elliott, Economics, Commercial Law, etc.
Ora Rush, Latin, etc.
Hollie H. Bellinger, Science
Martha Wolverton, Bookkeeping, Shorthand and Typing.
All children who are sic years old or will be so by March 1, 1929, are eligible to register the first day. There will be no mid-year classes, so any child who is expecting to attend school this year should start on the first day. Parents are requested to have their children in regular attendance and are invited to visit the schools at all times.....
September 6, 1928 - McLEANSBORO SCHOOLS OPENED MONDAYOnce more the youth of McLeansboro have reluctantly put aside the carefree happiness of vacation days, and entered upon the yearly pursuit of knowledge, which is so necessary to their success in later life. The grade schools and the McLeansboro Township High School opened Monday with Professor E. S. Stuteville at the helm. Following registration and assignment of books and classes Monday morning, the schools were dismissed until Tuesday when the actual school work was started. The enrollment in the grades was practically the same as last year, according to Prof. Stuteville. However, the enrollment for the high school was approximately one hundred more than last year, with a total of 310. The following is the enrollment for the four high school classes: Freshman 110, Sophomore 70, Junior 79, Senior 70. With the increased enrollment in the high school this year, the over-crowded condition of the east side building has become very acute, and it has been a real problem to provide seats for all. With the completion of the new building, about December 1, the much needed relief will be forthcoming. For the present the Knight of Pythians Lodge hall has been acquired by the School Board for one of the grades to permit additional room for the high school in the east side building.
September 13, 1928 - ADDITIONAL TEACHERS FOR HIGH SCHOOLDue to the crowded condition of the McLeansboro Township High School, located in the east side school building, and the large number of classes necessary, the School Board has been compelled to employ two additional teachers to help relieve the situation. Mrs. George W. Hogan, Jr., was employed last week for the full term, while Stanley L. Wolfe of Walkertown, Ind., was elected recently for the first semester. However, he has not accepted as yet, but is expected to do so. With the addition of those two teachers the High School faculty will number eleven in addition to Supt. Stuteville.
To relieve the congestion in the high school rooms and auditorium. Supt. Stuteville has found it necessary to hold ten class periods each day, instead of the usual eight. Pupils who have completed their class schedule early in the day are permitted to retire. This method of procedure has made it unnecessary for the School Board to rent extra rooms for the grades, and will be carried out until the new building is completed.
September 20, 1928 - GOOD PROGRESS MADE ON SCHOOL BUILDING
Fine progress has been made on the new McLeansboro Township High School building during the past few weeks and as a result the brick work is rapidly nearing completion. The walls have been practically completed and are almost ready for the roof supports.
The rooms are all divided off and rough flooring has been laid on both second and third floors. However, it will be sometime before any finishing work is undertaken. The contractors, Brannon & Parker, are confident that the building will be ready for occupancy by the first of December.
November 8, 1928 - PLASTERERS AT WORK IN SCHOOL BUILDINGPlasterers are actively engaged at the new McLeansboro Township High School building, and the work of plastering the rooms is progressing rapidly. The work of plastering the large auditorium was completed this week.
November 29, 1928 - SCHOOL BUILDING MAY BE READY BY 1929Finishing work on the new McLeansboro Township High School building is in progress this week, and there are some prospects of the building being ready for occupancy by the first of the year.Concrete work on the interior of the building, which including the concreting of the corridors, basement rooms and gymnasium was complete the first of the week, and a number of carpenters were immediately put to work laying flooring, putting up ceiling, etc. This work will necessarily take some time. The plastering work is nearly done. According to Mr. Brannon, who is in charge of the work, the building is now ready for the installation of the heating plant and electric light fixtures, and this work will be started immediately. The plumbing work is all complete and needs only to be connected up. Seats and blackboards have been purchased by the School Board, and are now on hand ready for installation, as soon as the interior work is completed. Much to the consternation of the local devotees of basketball and other athletics, it is feared that the gymnasium will not be ready for use by the time of the opening of the basketball season. There is a great deal of work yet to be done on the auditorium and classrooms and this must necessarily be completed first.
Force Of Carpenters Started Interior Finishing Work This Week
December 20, 1928 - COMPLETION OF SCHOOL BUILDING DELAYEDThe completion of the new high school building is being delayed on account of the installation of the heating plant, and the formal opening will not take place as early as had been planned. It is now believed that the building will not be ready for school use before the opening of the second semester of the high school year, which according to the high school calendar will be January 21, 1929. At the present time carpenters are at work putting in the stairways and the furnace men are busy running steam pipes and placing the radiators. It will probably take until January 1, 1929, to complete the installation of the heating plant. All of the floors have been laid except the hard wood floor on the gymnasium which cannot be laid until the building can be thoroughly heated. The school yard has been partially graded and this work will be completed as soon as weather conditions will permit. New furniture for the building is arriving daily and will be ready to place just as soon as the rooms are sufficiently completed to receive it.
January 17, 1929 - NEW GYM OPENED SATURDAY NIGHTThe gymnasium of the new McLeansboro Township High School building was formally opened here last Saturday night with a game between the McLeansboro Foxes and the Griffin, Ind., high school team. As a result of the opening of the new gymnasium and by reason of the fact it was the first home appearance of the local high school team, a large crowd was present. Lively music was contributed by Gersbacher's "Hamiltonians." However, the McLeansboro five did not perform in keeping with the spirit of the occasion, and as a result lost their first game in the new gymnasium. This was a surprise inasmuch as the Green and White had previously defeated the Hoosiers on their own court. In the first half, the Foxes played as if bewildered by their surroundings. Consequently the Indiana boys enjoyed themselves by scoring almost at will, the half ending 15-3 in favor of Griffin. However, during the rest period, the local boys were the recipients of a hearty lecture from Coach John Land, which brought them out of their state of semi-consciousness. The last half was an entirely different story, the Foxes turning the tables on their opponents and almost beat them out. They were unable to overcome, however, the big lead they had spotted the visitors in the first half. The final score was 23-18. With nine field goals to his credit, Garrett caused McLeansboro the most grief, while Arthur Irvin and Roger Bowers played a nice game for the Foxes.
Foxes Lose First Game to Griffin, Indiana, But Defeated Ewing Monday Night.
January 24, 1929 - WILL OPEN NEW SCHOOL MONDAYFinishing work on the new McLeansboro Township High School is being pushed as rapidly as possible in an effort to have the building ready for occupancy by Monday, Jan. 28, at which time the second semester of the local school year will open. Plans to the effect are also being perfected by the McLeansboro Township High School Board and faculty, and unless there is some unforeseen slip-up in these plans the students will all be housed in the new building next Monday, and the arrangement of classes will get underway.
It is needless to say that the change to the new building will be a great relief to the high school faculty, who have been working all during the first semester at a great disadvantage. The crowded condition of the East Side School building made it impossible to arrange a satisfactory schedule of classes, and this has been the source of much annoyance to students, teachers and parents alike. Although there is still quite a bit of work to be done in the new building, the Board is confident that it will be ready for the opening of the second semester. The auditorium seats have arrived, and will no doubt be set up this week. The class room furniture is also being arranged. The lockers which will line the corridors have not arrived as yet, and it is doubtful if they will arrive in time for the opening of the school. The date for the dedicatory exercises, which will mark the formal opening of the new building, has not been definitely set, although the arrangement of the program for the dedication is in the hands of Messrs. Harry and Ward and Lawrence Lambert. The arrangements are not complete at this time, but will be published in next week's issue of The Times. It is understood, however, that a special effort is being made by the High School Board to secure Francis G. Blair, State Supt. of Public Instruction, to assist with the ceremonies. Consequently the date of the exercises depends much on his acceptance and his calendar.
McLEANSBORO Township High School Will Start Second Semester In New Building
January 31, 1929 - WILL DEDICATE NEW SCHOOL FEB. 8It was definitely announced Wednesday that the new McLeansboro Township High School building will be formally dedicated on Friday evening, Feb. 8. This announcement was made upon the receipt of a letter from Hon. Francis G. Blair, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, accepting the date to deliver an address here in connection with the dedicatory exercises. The complete program for the exercises have been arranged, and is as follows:
Hon. Francis G. Blair, State Supt. Of Public Instruction, Will Deliver An Address
Music by Orchestra.
Invocation by Rev. W. R. Evans, pastor of the First Baptist Church
Music - Duet by Miss Irene Blades and Mrs. Cordah Hogan
Presentation of the Building to the Community, by J. H. Ward, President of the High School Board
Acceptance of the Building on Behalf of the Children, Prof. E. S. Stuteville, Principal of The McLeansboro Township High School
Response on Behalf of the Community, by M. L. Hunt, County Superintendent of Schools
Music - Violin Solo, Ira Dietz
Reading, Miss Martha Lee Jeans
Address by Hon. F. G. Blair, State Superintendent of Public Instruction
Inspection of School BuildingFollowing the conclusion of the exercises the public will be given an opportunity to inspect the new building, which is said to be one of the finest in southern Illinois, and of which the community as a whole is justly proud.
The building was taken over by the high school last Monday, when the faculty and student body moved from their cramped quarters in the East Side school building. Although slight inconveniences were encountered due to incomplete details, Principal Stuteville soon had everything straightened out and in ship-shape order. The first of the week was mostly taken up with the arrangement of class schedules for the second semester of the school year. Approximately 300 pupils are enrolled.
NOTE: Many thanks to Doris Nelson for taking the time to compile all the interesting historic articles from the 1927-29 McLeansboro Times. - Posted November 14, 2000.