Sue A. Nulf Strobel
School year 1956-1957, Beaver Local School District opened the doors of its brand new high school to, an estimated, four hundred (400) students. That first year was made up of 8th, 9th and 10th grade students, the 8th and 9th graders transitioned from Elkton, Rogers, West Point and Calcutta grade schools. 10th graders were district students who had attended their freshman year at area high schools of Lisbon, East Palestine, East Liverpool and possibly Wellsville, East Fairfield and New Waterford.
George M. VanHorne was the District Superintendent and Lee Kirkland, Principal. There were approximately 24 teachers.
We as students started out with all the typical sports of the time period, football, basketball, baseball and wrestling. There was also a choir and band. Social clubs consisted of Hi-Y, F.F.A., F.H.A., Latin Club, Industrial Arts, Masquers, Math, Future Nurses and Y-teens.
Band consisted of around 30 members plus four (4) majorettes and four (4) flag/banner carriers. Jack Campbell was the Band Director and he had quite a task facing him since there were only a handful of students who had ever marched in formation let alone performed programs. What a learning experience we all had! Mr. Campbell asked if anyone in band would volunteer to pen words for an Alma Mater and Anita Nulf and her Mother, Norma Nulf composed the words as follows:
It’s the red and white we cherish
Make loyalty the rule
To the emblem of our honor
The banner of our school.
So we’ll boast our Alma Mater
And so proudly cheer her name
As each of us endeavors
To brighten Beaver’s fame.
It’s the red and white we cherish
May our standards never fail
Raise our voices all together,
To Beaver Local Hail!
Mr. Campbell composed the music to flow with the written words and Beaver Local’s Alma Mater came in to being. Another note of interest, we didn’t have a designated music room, so band practiced in a regular classroom. Can you imagine the teachers in the adjoining classrooms trying to teach with all that noise? Then we had the little brick building south of the gym and parking lot for a band room. It wasn’t particularly ideal either.
School colors of red and white were chosen by the Board of Education.
Each school year another grade was added to the high school building; i.e., 1957-1958, 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th grades, then in 1958-1959, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th grades. In 1959 Beaver Local High School graduated its first class of seniors of 70 students.
Soon, it became apparent that the building was bursting at the seams and what began as two hallways centered by a cafeteria, offices, industrial department and gymnasium required expansion. Another hallway, and music room were added to the mix although you can imagine our surprise when, upon attending open house for the new addition, we found the music room split in two in order to house the wrestlers. The folks that had worked so tirelessly to pass the levy for a large music room were not impressed.
Still, the extra hallway wasn’t enough to contain the burgeoning student population therefore; the middle school idea was presented to the district and came to fruition in the early ‘1960‘s.
Our athletic teams and band struggled those early years but we held our heads high even though we knew that neighboring school districts called us the Beaver Local Yokels. We went out there and did our very best because all those years ago, Red Pride was born. Maybe not in so words, but in our hearts. That pride and those memories remain strong today even though the school building no longer stands. After all - “It’s the Red and White we cherish”! The pride and the memories will remain forever.