The following memories of MPHS were provided by Loretta Christensen of Maple Park. Loretta
is 92 years old and shared these memories with her niece, Sandy Busby. Truly fascinating if you
are a history buff like us at the IHSGD site!
"Memories of the Schools in Maple Park"
by Loretta Christensen
"I was born in October of 1915 and started school in September of 1921 in a two story, large
building on the southeast corner of Willow and Summer Street in Maple Park. I attended first and second grades there.
The eight grades were held on the first floorand a two-year high school was held on the second floor. On the second floor
of the school was a "spanking machine". When the boys misbehaved they were sent up to the principal's office and placed
in the spanking machine. Some of the high school classes were held in the Town Hall located on Main Street.
C.P. Falhirty was the principal from 1913 to 1923. Other principals included
James Benham (1922-1927), Ernest Heath (1927-1930), and Paul Stone (1930
through at least 1935).
A community high school was established in 1920 with a four year course of curriculum.
At that time a division of school boards brought about the planning of a new school building. Until this building
would be completed on September 01, 1922, high school classes were held in the Village Hall for one year while grade school
students continued in the old building until the new one was ready for occupancy. After completion of the new brick building
the grade school occupied the east half while the high school students occupied the west half. Until the gymnasium was
finished the graduation ceremonies for grade school and high school were held on the stage of the Town Hall on Main Street.
Later, kindergarten was held in a building on the location where the old school once stood.
A large gymnasium was added and opened on January 01, 1941. In 1942 two buses were
purchased for the transportation of high school students. In July of 1946 parts of 12 school districts were combined to
a consolidated school district and the high school district was enlarged. This brought about the closing of a number
of rural one-room grade schools.
On July 01, 1948, Maple Park high school and grade school districts were consolidated with the
schools of Elburn
, Sugar Grove
, and Big Rock
. The new organization was known as Kaneland Community Unit School District No. 302.
Teachers who taught at the grade school included Kathryn (Simon) Dwyer (1st
& 2nd grades), Vera (Lawson) Ohlin (3rd & 4th grades), Jesse Horn (5th & 6th
grades), and Mary (Keefe) Crosby (7th & 8th grades). High school teachers included Stella
Yates, Paul Stone (also the principal), Zara (Seybold) Brunton, Helen Bullington, A. W. Heath, Kathleen (Cline)
Butter Miss Brown, and Principal Orrell (McKenzie) Treadwell.
The last class to graduate from Maple Park High School was the Class of 1957. In 1920
Maple Park High School had 17 students enrolled. By 1932 there were 79 students in the high school. The basketball team
of 1933 won the Little 8 Conference Tournament. The team consisted of six seniors; Matthew Yagen, William
Powers, Frank Kuzan, William Strausburger, Forrest Weseman, and Norman Beck.
Lucille (Posson) Moore from the Class of 1933 wrote a song titled "Fight
for the Green and White" which became the school fight song. As I was looking through the book of all graduates from
Maple Park High School from 1921 through 1932 I realized that all students from those years are now deceased.
My class, the Class of 1933, still has 5 members living. We are all 92 years of age. The living members of my
class include Matthew Yagen of Maple Park, Frank Kuzan of Sycamore, William Strausburger
of Wisconsin, Helen (Messendorf) Strausburger of Sandwich, and myself, Loretta Christensen
of Maple Park. We had reunions for 45th, 50th, 55th, and 60th years. Since that time we have met each
year at Sorentos Restaurant for lunch."
*Class of 1955 graduate Dorothy Aikeley advises that the principal her senior year was Mrs Butler.
The enrollment was approximately 100 students . There were 21 students in Dorothy's graduating class.
If You Would Like To Share More Information...
...about the many accomplishments of Maple Park High School please write to us via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
. We are especially seeking a photo of the old school building or verification that the building pictured above is
of the old HS building. You can write to us via real mail at:
Illinois HS Glory Days
6439 N. Neva St.
Chicago, Il. 60631