The "Original" Clearfield High School - Downtown
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This building, identified on the post card as "High School, Clearfield, Pa" was located where the current
Clearfield Borough Police Station now stands. Before that on this site had once stood the "Clearfield Academy".
We're going to borrow liberally from a booklet published in 1976 titled "100 Years of CHS"
Read the whole
"100 Years of CHS"
That booklet states ~
"The building known as the "Old Academy", which stood where
the present abandoned Middle School East building now (1976)
stands was completed in the fall of 1829" . . .
. . . and later the caption for the below (left) picture says ~
"the first Clearfield High School was built on the site of the "Old
Academy", on South Front Streeet between St. Andrew's Episcopal
Church* and the present (1976) Shaw Public Library in 1902. This is
the same building that was known as the Junior High School for
nearly forty years; and later for sixteen years was called the Junior
High East. It was abandoned in the fall of 1975 and sold to Clearfield Borough in 1976" . . * except that the church wasn't there yet in 1902
To interpret a little more clearly ~
The "Old Academy" (1) was apparently constructed in 1829 ( on the present Police Station site ) and in 1902 on that same lot was
constructed the "Clearfield High School" (2&3) which then served as "High School" until 1917 when it became "Junior High."
The "100 Years" booklet doesn't include a picture of the Academy but shows instead an illustration (2) of the 1902 school,
explaining it's on the "same lot" but not making particularly clear that they were two distinctly different buildings.
The above picture (1) of the Academy is from PA Gen Webs Archives as is the color photo (3).
When the school on Mill Road opened in 1956 both the Junior High and the most recent Senior High began serving as Junior
Highs; Junior High West (along the river) and Junior High East (the one featured on this page.) They were later referred to as
Middle School West and East. The classes were divided between the East & West, 7th & 8th grade homerooms in East and
Freshmen in West. The only cafeteria was in the West building so it was necessary for kids to cross Front Street a couple times
a day regardless of the weather. There were gyms in both buildings but the only Auditorium was in East since the West Audi-
torium had been converted into the above mentioned Cafeteria so that meant even more street crossings. The sidewalks leading
to the crosswalk had a makeshift covering and there were buttons you could push to activate a stoplight for the vehicle traffic
and a "walk" sign for the kids. Remember too that back then Front Street was not one-way as it is now. What a nightmare;
to the best of my knowledge nobody ever got run over.
I'll add more information to this page as I get to it and also plan to get some pictures and information on other school buildings
in the Clearfield system. With the entire physical presence of the C.A.S.D. now consisting entirely of the Junior/Senior High
Campus and Clearfield Elementary, it's easy to forget that until fairly recently there were Centre, Bigler and Girard Elementaries
too and before that 3rd Ward, 4th Ward, Hyde, Glen Richey and Leonard Grade Elementaries. We'll cover all of those eventually.
Click to enlarge