David Gipson scholarship established
David Gipson
David Gipson

Initial money to fund the scholarship came from David’s classmates after Gipson’s family requested that flowers not be sent. Gipson, a U-High senior, died when he accidently discharged a gun that he was cleaning. Criteria for the scholarship of $50 included good citizenship, scholarship and leadership.

Dr. Harry Lovelass, Principal, guided U-High from 1949-1970
Thespian Troupe 1156 is organized
’50’s academics

During the 50’s, students were able to take a wide array of courses in agriculture, mechanical trades, business education and speech.

Students learn how to hold metal in a vice.
students look at a recorder
Teacher Bradford Barber shows students how to use a recording machine.
3 men
Teacher Ralph
Benton shows students how to examine corn.
In 1955, the Rostrum debaters tackled the question of whether there was more nourishment in the fragrance of limburger than the hole of a doughnut.
girls playing
Teacher Miriam Gray demonstrates volleyball technique during this 1950 p.e. class.
“The business department offers excellent preparation for future stenographers, typists, secretaries and businessmen.” -1952
Glenn Adams, winner of 11 “U’s”, enlists
Glenn Adams

A popular student, Adams won 4 letters in baseball, 2 in track, 2 in basketball and 3 in football. “Country”, as his teammates labelled him, enrolled in the armed services upon graduation.

Teacher Blanche McAvoy retires after 33 years
Blanche McAvoy
Blanche McAvoy

Ms. McAvoy taught biology from 1922-1955; in 1963 an award was created in her honor.

U-High students choose Eisenhower in mock election

The president and his running mate, Richard Nixon, received 251 votes; the democratic candidate, Adlai Stevenson, received just 48 votes.

Student body exceeds 400 students
Students debate Elvis Presley’s shaking hips in the Clarionette
October, 1956
Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley

“Are we becoming juvenile delinquents because we listen to Hound Dog and Don’t Be Cruel? Elvis’ records would be nothing without his movements.”

“…I have come to the conclusion that teenagers are under a hypnotic spell which paralyzes their minds and keeps them from thinking straight.”

Dorothy Anderson
Students, like Dorothy Anderson, ’56, cranked up the radio to songs by Fabian, Paul Anka and Bobby Rydell
Guidelines for written work

U-High provided guidelines for student work including manuscripts, commas, apostrophes, and capital letters.

For the first time in school history, U-High gets its own building
Metcalf Building
Thomas Metcalf Building, 1957
The Thomas Metcalf Building (now Moulton Hall) today.

During its first 100 years, U-High always shared a building with either college and/or grade school students. In 1957, The Thomas Metcalf Building was renamed to University High School. At the same time, Old Main, where many of U-High’s classes had been held, was torn down.

Remodeling took place throughout the year. The old playroom was converted to a student lounge. The old, cramped office was put on the main floor, and several glass cases and a trophy case were added.

girl entering doorway
Entering the Thomas Metcalf Building

During that year student lockers seemed to be moved on a daily basis; the dance room, the lunch room and even on the bridge between Old Main and U-High

homecoming program
Homecoming 1957
ISSCS student Harry Menton begins his high school career
Fall, 1957

Menton won 11 varsity letters during his high school careeer and in 1961 was named the outstanding high school graduate in Illinois. Menton, who had attended ISSCS since age 7, scored a touchdown for the varsity football team prior to his first day of school..

The school buses dropped Menton and the students from ISSCS off at the front door of U-High every morning. It “was always a humbling experience,” said Menton. “You were still a ‘home kid’ and that never really changed. Most of the kids from the home had a really hard time fitting in at U-High.”

-Elaine Graybill, The Pioneer, Spring 2000

ISSCS student Bernie Latta recalls being ostracized as a “homer”

Latta, whose mother died soon after he was born, lived at ISSCS from 1955-59, and attended U-High during that time. He recalls that it could be “tough” at times.

“Some of the other kids wouldn’t have anything to do with us,” he said. “The high school girls who didn’t live at ISSCS wouldn’t talk to me”.

Read more…

(from the McLean County Historical Museum) Those in the bus windows are (left to right): Leroy Rogers, Richard “Dick” Yeager, Ronald “Eli” Whitney (leaning out of the window), unidentified (the boy below Whitney), Richard “Dick” (aka “Ice”) Icenogle, and Harold Stoneking. The first two guys standing in the bus door are unidentified, but the third one (looking over his shoulder) is Ed Walsch. Judy Green (wearing scarf) is walking beside the bus, and the tall boy at the far right is Edward “Eddie” Miller.

ISSCS students recall highs, lows of attending U-High

For students of the Illinois Soldiers and Sailors Children’s School, attending U-High afforded many opportunities, but also many challenges. Author Elaine Graybill documents those in this story for the 2000 Pioneer newsletter.

1958 ISSCS graduates from U-High
ISSCS students
Seen here are, front row (left to right), Dixie Chambers. Jack Cummings, Judy Harvey, Dick Peifer, and Betty Jo Naseef; back row (left to right), Bill Marrs, Leroy Witte, Joe Menton, Don Peterson, Richard Yeager, and Ronald Whitney. Menton was the U-High homecoming king.
The 1958 Class Night featured a Wild West theme, popular on television at the time. At left, the Senior Sweetheart Dancers looked out on stage as they prepared to perform.
students prep for prom
Prepping for prom, 1958
Clarionette votes on name change

1959: Students vote on changing the Clarionette name to one of the following: The Pathfinder, The Pioneer, Frontiersman, The Log. According to Clarionette staff, “The Clarionette has no real meaning. It’s only value is sentimental…the only reason it hasn’t been changed is for lack of a new name.”

students look at paper
Jim Ringel and Sue Trail get material ready for the last Clarionette issue of the 1958-59 school year.
Items from homecoming, 1959
students in car
Clarion ad, 1959