CUMBERLAND COUNTY, ILLINOIS
 NEOGA SCHOOL

Old Neoga School
Current School
Neoga High School
Photos contributed by James Winnett

     The first school started in Neoga was in a small one room frame building in the East end of town. There were eight pupils enrolled in this first six month term. This one-room school was in use until 1867 when a two story frame building was erected. In 1896 this structure was destroyed by fire and was replaced by an eight-room brick building.
    Due to increased enrollment and the demand for higher educational advantages the school was regraded in 1884 and a 3 year high school curriculum was added.  Six young ladies comprised the class of 1887 which was the first class to complete the high school course in Neoga as well as the first in Cumberland County. Due to the manner of grading, classes graduated bi-annually until 1901. The first graduating services were held at the M. E. Church, April 14, 1887.  
    The two story eight room grade school building housed both the high school and grade school from 1884 until 1909, when the increasing attendance of rural students made it necessary to organize the high school district and erect a suitable high school building. The site of the first building at the east edge of Neoga has not been changed throughout the years. This marked the beginning of the Neoga Township High School.
 
    On
October 28, 1922, the high school was destroyed by fire and to replace it a new and larger building was erected. 
    A change in School Code in 1947, permitting the formation of community school units, brought about a major change in our school system. In 1948 the rural one room schools were abandoned and the smaller districts were absorbed in a larger unit, marking the change from the
Township High School to the Neoga Community Unit No. 3. This school unit comprises territory in Cumberland, Coles and Shelby Counties. With the high school as the nucleus, attendance centers are located at Trowbridge, Etna, Pioneer and Neoga.
    With the forming of this new  school unit came increased enrollment and need for added classroom facilities. Four additional classrooms were constructed from the old study hall in the high school building to be used as a junior high school, but the junior high school students were later moved to the new Elementary school building which was built in 1960. The old gymnasium was changed to two stories to house the community room, cafeteria, music rooms, and farm shop.
 A modern physical education plant was added to the building and it was dedicated on
November 1, 1953.
    The school enrollment has continued to grow and classes added as the need arose. In 1973 there were 315 students in the high school with 15 full time faculty members, 5 part time, a principal, and secretary and library aide. Many of the students are brought to school in the fleet of 17 buses.
    The largest class to graduate from the high school was 65 in 1970.

(Part of this information was taken from the Centennial Book written in 1956)

Class of 1887 Class of 1889 Class of 1891 Class of 1893
Bradman, Alice
Hancock, Carrie
Hancock, Cora
Husband, Elsie
Wright, Ada
Smith, Minnie

Joseph, Lorette
Kelley, Leni
McKay, Oliver
Mitchell, Blanche
Ragan, Samuel
Black, Maude
Estes, Eva
Hancock, Gertrude
Ragan, Robert
Wallace, Minnie
White, Fairelandar
White, Mattie
Comstock, Charles
Ewing, Florence
Hancock, Maude
Jones, Alice
Mitchell, Maude
Ragan, Belle
Singer, Dollie
Class of  1895 Class of  1897 Class of 1899 Class of 1901
Dodge, George
Ewing, Charles
Fisher, Meville
Good, Minnie
Head, Mae
McKinney, James
Morrison, Ellen
Packer, Herbert
Clark, George
Cullum, Edna
DeVore, Thomas
Gibson, Walter
Good, Charles
Hancock, Charles
Holloway, Ulva
Jones, Lucy
Leffler, William
Lindley, Walter
Ragan, Carroll
Voris, Henry
Willson, Irene
Wright, Robert
Clark, Charles
Dryden, Duff
Fulstone, Emily
Keller, Lilly
Kenworthy, Lee
Lacy, Maude
Osborne, Clarence
Phelps, Anna
Phelps, Eva
Swengel, Fred B.
Bingaman, Bertha
Good, Verna
Kenworthy, Lulu
Leffler, Maurice
Neighbor, Clarence
Class of 1902 Class of 1903 Class of 1904 Class of 1905
Cullum, Mary
Good, Grace
Husband, Adolph
Lindley, Jennie
McCormick, Fairy
Roberts, Zella
Voris, Louis Kirkam
Votaw, Inez
Birch, Fausta
Fretts, Florence
Fancher, Irma
Head, Gertrude
McMunn, Stella
Short, Clifford
Carey, Ethel
Swengle, Clarence Edwin
Bassett, Ina
Good, Blanche
Hancock, Faye
McCartney, Nettie
Peters, Bertha
Reid, Ella
Votaw, Lilah
Wilson, Gertrude
Class 1906 Class 1907 Class of 1908 Class of 1909
Burton, Lulu
Capps, Beulah
Champion, Grace
Clay, Nellie
Dodds, Belva
Lindley, Maye
McMunn, Lockie
Short, Leon
Burton, Nellie
Brant, Edith
Cline, Menzo
Crookshank, Leota
Curry, Edith
Good, Nelson
Dougherty, George
Hardin, Irene
Neighbor, Floy
Ragan, Lucia
Roberts, Edna
Burton, Lucille
Baker, Grace
Capps, Cora
Hand, Grace
Lacy, Robert
Lawson, Fred
Voris, Katherine
Votaw, Howard
Wilson, Lola
Baker, Richard
Coen, Roscoe
Dougherty, Xenophen
Ewing, Portia
Fabcher, Eva
Garrett, Leslie
Kimery, Horace
Lacy, Florence
Wakefield, Verna
Class of 1910
First class to graduate
from M.E. Church
Class of 1911
First class to graduate from the
New High School Building



Bosley, Pearl
Caldwell, Lloyd
Curry, Elizabeth
McMannigel, Clara
McMannigel, William
Swengel, Blanche
Buchanan, Blanche
Buchanan, Lelia
Coen, Stanley
Dow, Julien
Everhart, Philip
Ewing, Dorothy
Ewing, Everett
McAllister, Mabel
Whitten, Leslie
Wilson, Jennie
Young,  Ferne
Young, Minnie



Class of 1940
Class Roll
Graduating
May 29, 1940
Class Officers
President- Majorie Young
Vice President- John Jacobson
Sec.-Treasure- Margaret Wente
Board Of Education
President- Dr. S.E. Bigler
Secretary- Mr.O.E. Young -  Mr. E. G. Brick
Mr. W.H. Bingham   - Mr. R.E. Strohm
Lloyd Zimmer
Aileen Burge
John Jacobson
Wandalee Taylor
Norman Peyton
Marjorie Young
Addison Hill
Elwanda Drennan
Joseph  Swinchart
Marcella Boldt
Dean McAllister
Dennis Young
Lewis Claybaugh
Mary Alice Brown
Thomas Buress
Margaret Norton
Thomas Holladay
Virginia Wagner
Harold Walk
Daisy Bell Greeson
Gene Barber
Harvey Watkins
Eugene Albin
Nelle Farris
margaret Anderson
Robert McKinney
Donald Miller
Helen Snodgrass
William Drennan
Chole White
Robert Swanson
Margaret Wente
Charles Albin
Mary Alice Ralston





NEOGA EDUCATION SINCE 1956

By Evelyn Alexander and Pat Williamson This is the first of three feature articles about Neoga schools and educators. during the last 50 years.
In 1948 voters in and around Neoga approved the formation of Neoga Community Unit #3. Numerous area one-room school houses were closed and busing of students to central locations began. Students were housed at Etna, Trowbridge, Pioneer School on Rt.121 and Neoga Elementary and High Schools. Eventually the schools at Etna and : Trowbridge were closed and grades one through eight were taught at Pioneer' School and Neoga Elementary. In the 1949-1950 school year, junior high school for grades 7-8 was formed in the high school building. In 1959, by a vote of 547 to 709, approval was given to sell $350,000 in bonds to build Neoga Elementary and Junior High School on West Sixth St. Junior high school student were then moved from the high school to the new building. The elementary students in Pioneer Elementary School and Neoga Elementary School were combined with the configuration of 'the grade levels in each building changing as needed. In 1954 a new gymnasium was built for Neoga High School, and the old gym was converted to a cafeteria, band room and farm shop, On March 12, 1977 ground was broken for Neoga Junior-Senior High School on East Seventh St. The building was built around] the existing gymnasium and the old high school building was demolished. Junior high: students were then moved to the new building. In 2003 Neoga Middle School, housing grades for four through six was opened in the new building behind the high school, and Pioneer Elementary School was closed.  Presently. grades preschool through three attend Neoga Elementary School, grades four through six attend Neoga Middle School and grades seven through twelve attend Neoga Junior-Senior High School.

VINTAGE BASEBALL ON SESQUICENTENNIAL SCHEDULE

"Vintage base ball is a gentleman's and gentle ladies'  game," said Lee Slider, a  semi-retired cultural in. interpreter with the Macon County Conservation District, in his 1860 persona as Joseph Trobaugh, "owner" of the Ground Squirrels. "The game is played for fun, friendship and education. While teams try their very best to win, the real purpose of the game is to  give spectators a glimpse , into our past and the origins l of our national pastime." Vintage base ball is on the schedule for Friday night during Neoga's Sesquicentennial in September.
Carol Walk and the Sesqui committee are looking for players. Anyone interested - in playing should contact her at 895-3286. "We would  like to have between 16 and  20 players of various ages, but if we have more than that, it would. be great, Walk said. No special equipment is required, though players might want to wear rubber cleats. Players do not need gloves. The only thing they are asking is that players purchase a Sesquicentennial t-shirt and come up with nicknames for themselves.
(contributed by Bob Young)

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