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City of Antigo, Langlade County, Wisconsin


History of the City of Antigo
Written by Mrs. Anna Morrissey, daughter of Francis Deleglise, founder of Antigo
Published in the Antigo Herald, July 1, 1920

The First Antigo School
first school

"The first school in Antigo was constructed of logs by a young man named Joseph Krause. He intended to reside at the place, but instead took up a homestead at or near Kempster. The school was located where the P.F. Kelly Implement Store is now, (NE) corner of Third Avenue and Superior Street and was opened in 1879. Miss Anna Sheriff, now Mrs. Peter O'Connor of White Lake, Elton township, proved capable and efficient as the first teacher.

Other early teachers in Antigo were: Miss Sophia Deleglise, now Mrs. Sophia Leslie, Miss Carrie Herman, Miss Nellie Williams, now Mrs. C.S. Leykom, Mrs. Maggie Hughes, Byron J. Oakley, the late F.J. Finucane, Elizabeth McGill, Virginia Pierson and Lizzie Borgman. By 1883 Antigo had a graded school with three departments.

The first Antigo school was typical of the pioneer. It had only two half windows in which to let in light. The floor was made of rough odds and ends boards. The seats were made of basswood trees, 'split in twain.' The round sides were perforated with holes to receive pegs. Back rests and book shelves were absent.

The little log school was warmed by a box stove that drove out the frost in the long dreary winters and smudged out the mosquito and fly in the spring and summer." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 38.

City of Antigo Ward Schools
first ward school
First Ward

Location: Corner of Graham Ave. & Fulton St.

"The contract for the erection of a two story brick school building in the 1st ward was awarded to Thomas Solar, September 18, 1905, at a cost of $10,247. The school was completed and accepted in October, 1906. J.D. Chubb was the architect. The 1st ward school was named the T.D. Kellogg school in honor of T.D. Kellogg, then President of the Board of Education. It is located in Daskam's 2nd sub-division." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

second ward school
Second Ward

Location: SE corner of Second Ave. & Clermont St.

"February 7, 1896, bids were received for erecting a four room two story school in the second ward. Thomas Wright was awarded the contract at $6,868. Conover & Porter, Madison, Wis., architects drafted plans and specifications for the building which was completed in August, 1896. The school is at the intersection of Clermont street and Second avenue." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40

third ward school
Third Ward

Location: NE corner of Second Ave. & Deleglise St.

"In 1899 the city authorized the issuance of $8000 in bonds to build a two story school in the third ward. A one room frame building was used before then. The present school was completed and accepted in 1900. It is located in block 1 of the Mary Deleglise addition. It cost about $8,000." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

fourth ward school
Fourth Ward

Location: North side of Seventh Ave. between Elm & Deleglise Sts.

"The fourth ward building contract was let to Thomas Solar at $11,630. (He was also given a contract to build an addition on the high school at the same time, June 15, 1904.) The fourth ward was completed and ready for school purposes by the fall of 1904. The old frame structure was moved away by R.M. Briggs. The fourth ward is located in block 1 of Daskam's addition." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

fifth ward school
Fifth Ward

Location: The first floor of the Junior High Building on Clermont St. between 7th & 8th Aves. which was erected in 1924. Before 1924, according to Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40: "all classes in the fifth ward are conducted in the high school building in block 63."

sixth ward school
Sixth Ward

Location: NE corner of Seventh Ave. & Virginia St.

"On June 5, 1896, the Board of Education adopted a resolution requesting the city council to submit to a referendum a proposition to borrow $7,000 from the state for a ten year term, $4,000 to be used to erect the sixth ward and $3,000 to meet a part of the contract price of the second ward. The resolution was rescinded June 19, 1896. March 1, 1897, the school board passed a resolution requesting the same loan. Meanwhile the Jaekel building (M. Krom Building) was used for school purposes. May 8, 1897, W.H. Nelson of Merrill was awarded the contract to build the sixth ward at $6,450. Conover & Porter were the architects. The building was completed October 1, 1897. It is located in block 59, 7th avenue and Virginia street." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

Antigo High Schools

City of Antigo High School Pictures and Lists of Graduates

"The First High School. The High School department was established in the Village of Antigo in October, 1883. C.O. Marsh, first Principal, arrived in Antigo Tuesday, September 25, 1883. 41 pupils were enrolled before the 1883 term closed. Miss Agnes Donohue, the first graduate, June 20, 1885, read an essay, 'Character' as one of the numbers of the first high school exercises. Others who participated were: Lizzie Caldwell, Sybil Cornish, George Porter, Edith Logan and Dr. H.V. Mills, leader of the Forest City Orchestra. High School was first conducted in a frame building on the site of the public library. Not long after a two store frame building was erected on the site of the Second Ward School from which Miss Agnes Donohue graduated. This frame building was used until the first brick structure was erected in block 63, present site of the Antigo High School. When it was proposed to erect a brick high school in that site it was covered with a thick growth of timber. It was owned by Hon. Francis A. Deleglise who presented it to the village for school purposes.

February 9, 1890, the city council approved plans for the erection of the school. The building originally cost $16,500, but improvements and additions were made after its construction to keep pace with the increase in enrollment from year to year. The school served the rising generations faithfully until that bitter cold morning, January 6, 1916, when fire turned it into a heap of smoldering ruins. The Philakean Debating Society held the last meeting in it, January 5, 1916. Valuable school records and trophies, most of which cannot be replaced, were burned.

The New High School. Time was not lost to provide facilities for school purposes after the burning of the high school. Citizens, business places, lodges, and churches unanimously came forth and offered rooms. Most of them were accepted. A special meeting of the Board of Education was called. President E.J. Goodrick appointed a committee consisting of N.R. Babcock, R.S. Healy, Sr., and Walter Below to assist Superintendent H.S. Simmons secure rooms.

The first building plans were discussed at once. E.J. Goodrick, W.B. McArthur, N.R. Babcock, Edgar Neff and George Palmiter were chosen as the Ways and Means Committee on construction. Robert Messmer, Milwaukee architect, was selected to prepare plans and specifications for a new school to cost not more that $100,000. This was in accordance with a resolution passed at a regular meeting of the city council, April 26, 1916. May 18, 1916, bids were opened and the contract for erecting the building was awarded to the Immel Construction Company of Fond du Lac for $96,000. Heating and ventilating apparatus was installed by the General Heating & Ventilating Company of Milwaukee. Louis Peters, Antigo plumber, was awarded the plumbing contract.

The corner stone of the high school was laid amid impressive and appropriate ceremonies in July, 1916. The high school, modern in every respect, was first used in the spring of 1917. It was officially accepted before the opening of the 1917-1918 school term. The building committee consisted of N.R. Babcock, R.S. Healy, Sr., Walter Below , and Dr. F.C. Kestly. The flag pole was donated by N.R. Babcock." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, pages 38-39.

Parochial Schools
All Saints Catholic School

st. john school


St. John's Parochial
Seventh Ave. & Fulton St.

"In 1890, under the regime of Rev. William Takken, the St. John's Parochial School was erected. The cost was approximately $8,000. The increase enrollment and growing demands necessitated additions and improvements that have been made during Rev. Conrad Saile's pastorship. These improvements have cost between $12,000 and $14,000. Enrollments at St. John's parochial school in 1922 was 487 - 255 boys and 232 girls. The school is in charge of Francisan Sisters, ten of whom teach the various grades. It is located at the corner of Fulton Street and Seventh Avenue, block 57." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

(Looking for picture)
St. Hyacinth Parochial
East side of Edison St. between Third & Fourth Aves.

"St. Hyacinth Parochial school was erected in 1908. It is in charge of two Sisters. The average attendance is 84 pupils in grades ranging from the first to the eighth. This school is located on Edison street in block 23, original plat of Antigo." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

Peace Lutheran School

peace school

Peace Evangelical Lutheran Parochial
Several buildings were used on the same site at Eighth Ave. & Lincoln St.

"The Antigo Evangelical Peace parochial school was established in 1897. Since 1902, the old church, north of the present edifice, has been used as the school. Two teachers are in charge. The old school was located west of the present church site. Grades range from first to eighth." From Dessureau's History of Langlade County, page 40.

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