The History of West Brooklyn High School
West Brooklyn (population 174) is located in far north-central Illinois in the southeastern portion of Lee
County. The town was platted in 1872, but not incorporated until 1894. A short write-up on the early history of
West Brooklyn can be found at http://www.leecountyhistory.com/lee_county/brooklyn.htm. It is located about 10 miles due north of Mendota on West Brooklyn Road about two miles west of Illinois Route 251. A
branch of the Green River flows through town.
The history of the town's school system is a long one. According to the Illinois Trails website (http://www.iltrails.org/lee/leecitywbrook.html), the first school in the West Brooklyn area was built in 1874. A better, more modern building was built in 1900. West
Brooklyn originally offered a two-year course of study for high school students. It is believed around 1931 or 1932
that a third year of high school courses was established. If a student wanted to continue their education, they had their
choice between Amboy, Mendota, and Lee Center to gain a four-year diploma. Enrollment was said to
be about 10-12 students for all three classes of high school students.
We believe West Brooklyn High School fell victim to the large consolidation effort which swept the
state of Illinois in the late 1940's. The high school was closed in 1947 with students sent over to Compton High School
and a year later, that school was absorbed into the Mendota school district. The grade school may have stayed active for a
few more years; however it, too, is now closed.
The kids of West Brooklyn today attend school in Mendota. The fate of the West Brooklyn School building
is sad, having been torn down many years ago.
West Brooklyn High School Quick Facts
Year first school building built: 1874
Year "newer" building built: 1900
Third year of education added: 1931
Year School closed: 1947
Consolidated to: Compton,
& later Mendota
West Brooklyn HS team nickname: unavailable
WBHS team colors: Purple
School Fight Song: "We're
Loyal to You, Brooklyn High"
to the tune of the University of Illinois fight song)
We're loyal to you, Brooklyn High,
purple and gold, Brooklyn High,
We know that you stand
For the best in the land
we know that you'll win, Brooklyn High,
So dribble that ball, Brooklyn High,
And pass on that ball, Brooklyn High,
For you are our vain protectors,
On boys, for we expect a
from you, Brooklyn High
(thanks to John & Betty Gehant for submitting the words, which were listed in the 1945-46
school yearbook, The Brooklynite)