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Local History Resources: Timeline - Freeport Public Schools

1820 circa

  • Freeport's first public school started in a one room school house located at the north end of the triangle formed by the intersection of Main and Church Streets

1821

  • 37 students attended school six days a week. On Sundays, the Presbyterian Church held religious services in the school building

1843 circa

  • Professor McGee introduced grammar, geography, natural philosophy and an advancement in mathematics. He also introduced the blackboard

1850 circa

  • A new one-story school building was constructed on Main Street's west side, slightly north of Merrick Road

1852

  • After repeated and unsuccessful attempts to get a bigger school built, a few local residents took matters into their own hands and demolished the old building. While the new school was being constructed, the district rented space from Andy Rhodes' wagon shop for three months. Rhodes was paid $8. The original building was sold to Mr. Daniel Ellison for $50.

1853

  • 203 students enrolled. Total expenses for the year: $414.63

1875

  • New building on Pine Street is constructed for $3,858.75. Old structure is sold for $750

1877 circa

  • Uniform system of textbooks introduced

1885

  • Caroline G. Atkinson hired as Freeport's fourth teacher (in addition to L. M. Burdick, Phebe Tice, and Louise J. Carpenter). Ms. Atkinson was a graduate of Albany Normal School (University at Albany)

1890 circa

1890

  • (October 7) A motion was passed changing the District School to a Union Free School

1892

  • Enrollment reached 528. Charles W. Oley became principal

1893

  • (January 10) Wooden school house destroyed by fire
  • (July 2) A cornerstone laid to kick off the construction of a $30,000 brick school building 

Source:

"Freeport's Public Schools." The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. July 23.1893, 20. Accessed August 9, 2018. https://bklyn.newspapers.com/image/50389760/?terms=freeport%2Bpublic%2Bschool.

1894

  • (March 9) Formal opening of the new school located on the corner of Pine and Grove Streets

1895

  • Enrollment reached 445

1899

  • (October 11) High school grade formally began

1901

  • First high school class graduated

1903 circa

  • Large addition added to school building costing approximately $30,000

1905

  • Class of 1905 chose red and white as the school colors

Source:

Deterling, William. "An Old Diary." The Student. April 1935, 12.

1907

  • New school building constructed at the corner of Ocean and Seaman Avenues

1908

  • The Tattler, a  weekly newspaper, was founded in 1908 by Freeport High School student James E. Stiles.  The newspaper focused on school news and events but was not an official publication of Freeport High School

Source:

Uhlan,Edward. Dynamo Jim Stiles: Pioneer of Progress. New York: Exposition Press, 1959.

1909

1910

  • The Girls' Athletic Association with the Help of the Board of Education were able to get a tennis court constructed on school grounds

Source:

"School Notes." Nassau County Review. June 17, 1910, 1.  Accessed October 29, 2018. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071433/1910-06-17/ed-1/seq-1/.

1912

  • Due to school overcrowding, many students placed on part-time schedules. Rooms rented in the Village to provide classroom space

1913

  • Moxey Rigby became the first African American to graduate Freeport High School

Click here for more information about Moxey Rigby.

1915

  • Columbus Avenue School constructed

1916

  • (June 30) - Former President William Howard Taft addressed graduates at the Freeport High School commencement exercises in the American Theatre

Source: 

"Ex-President Taft to the Graduates." Nassau County Review. June 30, 1916, 1. Accessed August 29, 2019. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071433/1916-06-30/ed-1/seq-1/.

1917

  • The Fire Council of the Freeport Fire Department agreed to use the fire whistle to alert students when th school would be closed due to "stormy weather"

Source:

"Fire Whistle to Aid School Children." The Nassau Review. January 19, 1917, 1.  Accessed July 2, 2018. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071433/1917-01-19/ed-1/seq-1/.

1918

  • Agnes Earon becomes first women elected to the school board

Source:

"Announces Candidacy for School Trustee of Freeport." The Nassau Post. April 12, 1918, 5. Accessed August 7, 2017. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071434/1918-04-12/ed-1/seq-5/.

1920 circa

  • Flashings, the Freeport High School newspaper, began

1921

  • Continuation classes started by the Board of Education for minors 14 and 15 years old who went to work before graduating.  Class took place on Saturdays between 8 a.m. and noon

1922

  • Freeport Cemetery chosen as the site for a new school building

1923 circa

  • Grove Street School overcrowding made it necessary for the district to use space in the neighboring Engine Company No. 1 firehouse, the Presbyterian Church, the Library, and YMCA

1925

  • Junior-Senior high school enrollment reaches 887
  • New school building completed on site of the Freeport Cemetery accommodates the 7th and 8th grades from all elementary schools

1925-1961

Source:

Dodd Retiring as Freeport School Head. Newsday. December 14, 1960, 30.

1933

  • First known published usage of "Red Devils" to describe an athletic team from Freeport High School

Source:

Huley, Frank. "Freeport Beats Hempstead Hempstead with Final Spurt 18-15." Nassau Daily Review. December 18, 1933, 12.  Accessed August 7, 2018. fultonhistory.com

1931

  • Cleveland Avenue School opened
  • Columbus Avenue School enlarged

1932

  • Roy Leon Smith, former principal of Freeport High School, died at his home in North Adams, MA.  He was 51 years old

1937

1941

  • Junior-Senior high school enrollment skyrocketed to 1,779. Grove Street Elementary School begins housing the 7th grade
  • School District publishes a 45 page booklet entitled The School Building Needs of Freeport, Long Island
  • Dr. Dodd re-elected president of the New York State Teachers Association
  • Willard W. Jones, principal of Archer Street School, entered the Army as a chaplain.  Dana H. Smith succeeded Jones
  • Bertha Hull, principal of Seaman Avenue School retired.  Lawrence C. Lobaugh succeed Hull
  • Helen E. Ross promoted principal of Columbus Avenue School after the retirement of Augusta M. Lovenguth

1941 circa

1948

1949

  • Long Island Park Commission gives nine acres of land north of the Cleveland Avenue School to be used as athletic fields for Freeport High School
  • Atkinson School constructed. This school was named for Caroline G. Atkinson, a teacher with over 50 years of service in the school district

1950-1952

  • Seaman Avenue School used as temporary school housing for over-flow classes

1950

  • Freeport High School teachers K. Alice Hoerner and C. Sheard Parker died in a plane crash.  They were returning from summer vacation in upstate New York were they both had homes

1953

  • Buffalo Avenue Field House was constructed for the athletic field north of the Cleveland Avenue School

1960

  • Freeport High School constructed on the marshy land between the Village of Freeport and Baldwin

1962

  • Giblyn School at South Ocean Avenue and Cedar Street, named for Leo F. Giblyn who headed the Board of Education for 21 years, opened

1963

  • Cleveland Avenue School was closed
  • Undefeated Freeport High School Football team wins the Rutgers Cup.  Bill Ashley retires as football coach after the winning season

Click here for more information about Bill Ashley

1965

  • Freeport leased classroom space from the First Presbyterian Church for 209 first and second graders while $60,000 in renovations were made to Archer Street School

Source:

"Church Leases Space to Archer School Students." The Leader. October 14, 1965, 13. Accessed June 1, 2018. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071064/1965-10-14/ed-1/seq-15/.

"Jewish Group Objects to Church-School Ties." Newsday. November 5, 1965, 15.

1964

  • Seaman Avenue School was converted to an administration building

1966

  • (October 7) Fire burned the Grove Street School

1969

  • Addition added to Freeport High School

1972

  • Freeport acquired the title "Math Capital of the United States"

Source:

"Freeport is Proud of its Mathlets." Newsday. Oct 13, 1972, 2A

 

  • George Emma was named athletic director of the Freeport School District

Source:

"George Emma Dies; Students and Adults Mourn." The Leader. May 19, 1983, 3. Accessed October 26, 2018. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071064/1983-05-19/ed-1/seq-3/.

1978

  • Freeport High School's men's basketball team won the Nassau Class A title

Source:

"George Emma Dies; Students and Adults Mourn." The Leader. May 19, 1983, 3. Accessed October 26, 2018. http://nyshistoricnewspapers.org/lccn/sn95071064/1983-05-19/ed-1/seq-3/.

1988

  • Athletic field at Freeport High School was named in honor of George Emma

Source:

Benza, A. J. "Keening a Coach's Memory Alive." Newsday. January 3, 1988, 27.

1990

  • District celebrated its centennial

1999

  • Flashings, Freeport High School's newspaper, fought censorship over an article it wanted to publish about the arrest of the track coach

2003

  • New Visions School of Exploration & Discovery, Freeport's first magnet school, opened

2007

  • The William "Bill" Ashley Memorial Sports Complex was dedicated at the Cleveland Avenue Field in Freeport

Source:

Freeport Report, November 2007.

2009

  • Archer Street celebrated 100th anniversary

2010

  • (October 6) Elinor Smith was awarded a Freeport High School Diploma posthumously

2015

  • Columbus Avenue School and Archer Street School are given historic roadside markers by the Freeport Landmarks Preservation Commission

2018

  • Freeport High School football team won the Long Island Conference One championship