The Gilson -Haw Creek Township High School was quite innovative for a small town school district.
Gilson School District was the first to use buses for transportation to and from school in Knox County. They
also utilized field trips and other forward-thinking ideas to enhance the learning experience for their children.
The consolidation effort of the State of Illinois caught up to many small schools in the late 1940s.
Haw Creek Township High School in Gilson was one of those caught in this effort. Gilson - Haw Creek Township High
School closed in 1948, keeping only a grade school for kids in K - 6 open. All other kids in grades 7
- 12 attended school as part of the Knoxville School District after the closure. The grade school closed in
1977 with all classes now held in Knoxville. The original Gilson - Haw Creek Township High School building we believe
is still standing proudly in town. A very rare feat for an older wooden school building of its size. A good fan of the
area, Denis Shenaut, tells us he and others played basketball in the gym through the early 1980s.
An excellent book which reviews and documents the history of Gilson and several other schools in the Know County area
has been published by Marie Olinger of Galesburg. As Marie describes her book and how to order
"Rural Schools Out of the Past has over 200 pages of pictures and stories from students or teachers
of rural schools. Pictues of 50 schools in Knox County and close by. The cost is $25 plus
postage of $4 or make arrangements to pick up. To order the book please write to
743 IL RT 41
Galesburg, IL 61401
You may also phone me at 309-462-2293 I will be at Gilson School Ice Cream Social July 16, 2006 from
2p to 5p with my book and visiting with guests."
Gilson - Haw Creek Township High School Quick Facts
Year HS building built: 1903
First graduating class:
1905 (five students)
Gymnasium built: 1928
Year closed: 1948
Consolidated to: Knoxville
Year grade school closed: 1977
School team nickname: the
School team colors: unavailable
School Fight Song: unavailable