Posted in Faculty, Historical Marker on Dodds Avenue, Preservation of History

Surviving Faculty Members of Central on Dodds Avenue

One of our goals is to invite all surviving members of the faculty to Dedication of the Historical Marker on August 4th.

We would appreciate any contact information you have on the following:

– James (Jim) Rogers.   Science and Chemistry teacher at both old and new Central.

– Edwin Grant.   Probably taught at both Central until 1968, and then J B Brown thereafter.

– Wayne Huling.

Posted in Graduating Class

Class of 1916

Class of 1916

On June 2 , 1916,  105 Central seniors were awarded diplomas by  L W Bates, Chair of the High School Board, Hamilton County, at the City Auditorium. This was reported by the Times as the largest graduating high school class ever in East Tennessee:

Iva Akin

Ruth Allison

Harry Anderson

Houston Barker         Valedictorian

Emma Shannon Barnett

Marian Beers

Winona Blacker

Harry Blackwell

Alan Blisplinghoff

Emma Boehm

Carl Breitwelser

Cloman Brown

Gladys Brown

Hazel Brown

Willie Brown

Jessie Carmack

Ralph Carpenter

George Castings

Elaine Chaffee

Helen Colby

Ora Collins

Alford Cooper

Frank H Cooper

Francis Cope

John B Criswell

Walter Creswell

Albert Crumley

Lawrence Daniels

Paul Deakins

Embry Dearing

Nellie Dodds

Benjamin DuPre

May Duggan

Gertrude Easterly

Mildred Faidley

Robert Garner

Odessa Gattis

Lillis Gill

Ernest Grigsby

Emma Guthrie

Warren Hale

Ruby Harris

Bertha Harwood

Alice Hilton

Alvis Holland

Clara Huntington

Mary Igou

Annie Ingram

Bessie Jenkins

George Jones

Rucker Jones

Maud Keen

James Killian

Leslie Kling

Katherine Land

Nadine Lyle

Esther Mackie

Eugenia Madden

Annie Marler

Clyde Masoner

James Massey

Ethel McCulley

 Jessie May McDonald

Willie McKinney

Kenneth McLemore

Stewart McPherson

Charles E Meredith

Albert Miller

Mary Milligan

Artie Moore

Lovell Morris

Forrest Morris

Thomas Moulton

Annie Lee Mowery

Jake Nicholson

Johnnie Nicholson

Mary Christine Noble

William Padgett

Margaret Peak

Katherine Pirtie

Alford Poe

Louise Pope

J B Ragon, Jr

George V Richmond   Salutatorian

Anna Grace Roberts

Joe Roberts#

Margaret Sauls

Edith Shehee

Myrtle Short

Mary Shugart

Franklin Steffner

Hattie Joe Sutton

Bryan Talley

Roy Terry

Lewis P Thatcher

Charlie Thompson

Katie Tinker

Lucille Trewhitt

Harvey Underwood

Anna Watson

Georgia Webb

Homer Weber

Bonnie  Willbanks

Luke Williams

Margaret Wilson

Sidney Wood

Posted in Graduating Class

Class of 1915

Class of 1915


 The following 84 Central seniors received diplomas from D H Bloom, President of the High School Board, Hamilton County, Tennessee on June 4, 1915 at the city auditorium. 

Viola Adams  

Harriet Aiken  

Ruby Allen     

Aline Anderson 

Maude Alverson  

Louise Barringer 

Otis Beck      

Bernard Bender   

Clementine Brown  

Herschell Broyles  

Marshall E Broyles  

Preston Bryant   

Read Card  

Mildred Carr   

Donald Chaddick  

George Mercer Clementson  

Lurline Cole  

Susie Combs     

Jesse Payne Conner  

Emmett Cook

Doris Mary Cuneo  

Ruth Vernon Daniel  

Willetta Denton  

Robert F Dickson    

Edith Alma Ealy  

Inez Estell   

William Dean Farris  

Maurice Joseph Fenton 

Dorothy Fitzgerald   

Inez Gray 

Jesse Gross  

Metta Guthrie  

Jesse Hargraves 

Sylvester Harris   

Luther Lee Hartman  

Otto Heard  

Myrtle Hengstler    

Gertrude Lufkin Henshaw    Salutatorian

Henry Hobday 

Mary Lou Hudson  

Wiley Hudson   

R. Swan Hunter  

Richard Johnson  

Bernice Jones 

Rubye Julian   

Willie Melva Lauderbach 

Lillian Grace Lewis 

Clyde H Mansfield    Valedictorian

Otto J Mattil   

Buist McAlister   

Elnora Stella McDonald 

Jane McElhaney 

Alfred McIsaac  

William Hobert Merriam  

Lucy Rae Milburn   

Sam A Morris     

Paul Leo Murphy      

James Newman  

Clair O’Brien  

Joyce Osborne   

Lee Parks 

Adeline Pickering 

Maude Price  

Alice May Prince  

Carleton Randall  

George Revington 

Mary Richards  

Arlington Cornelius Robinson  

Margaret Anne Seagle   

Edna Mae Smith 

Irvin Clarence Smith  

Lenore Stark   

Leafie Street   

Jessie Taylor  

Carrie Tinker   

Linwood Wade   

Avis Warrenfels 

Earnest Patrick West         

Nathaniel Winfield Westbrook   

Mildred Wilbanks   

Huger N Willard  

Doyal P Wilson   

Leroy Clark Wilson  

Amos Woodhead  

Posted in Early History

Early History of Central by Charlie Sedman

The following are articles by Charlie Sedman are extracted from The Central Connection:

On Friday September 6, 1907, Central High School opened for registration at the old Ridgedale School on the corner of Peachtree St. and Bennett Ave.   Central thus became the first high school in Hamilton County to offer a four-year curriculum (City didn’t adopt a four-year program until 1912) and the second county high school (Tyner opened the following Monday).   By September 19, registered students totaled 156, and this number would grow to 230 by mid-year, and then to 306 by the end of the year, aided by the promotion of 76 area eighth graders to the ninth grade at mid-term, as the new building opened.   [Central would not move into the new building, designed to accommodate 500 students, until January 6, 1908.]

The new Hamilton County Plan (1906) was to have one four-year high school offering a full college prep diploma with peripheral high schools offering three-year certificates, requiring all students seeking a diploma to complete their fourth year at the new central high school, thus the name Central High School.  Of course this was very difficult for students living in the Soddy and Sale Creek areas, so in short order their schools, along with Hixson and Tyner, were expanded to a full four-year program.  But the original central school retained the name Central High School.  So now you know.

The majority of Central students in the early days were mostly nearby, i.e, within walking distance or a streetcar ride from school, meaning that students from areas north of the river or well east of the ridge had some logistical problems getting to Central.   Teachers and students mostly lived in the Glenwood-Ridgedale-Highland Park-Eastside-East Chattanooga area. A very few of the notable early grads like Creed Bates (1911) commuted all the way from St Elmo. Very little indication that the farm kids came into town to go to school. Also Soddy, Tyner, Sale Creek, and Hixson then were very small schools by comparison to Central and City; graduating classes in the 1910-20 era were single digits compared to Central and City being near 100 each. In the 1920s more students from Eastdale-Brainerd-East Ridge and Hill City (North Chattanooga) flowed in as those areas transitioned from rural to suburbs.   The Hoodenpyl (Signal Mtn) and Olinger (moved from Soddy to Riverview) clans are examples of large rural famililes sending their kids to Central in the 20s as transportation improved. This necessitated the big expansions of the building in 1923 (auditorium and south wing) and 1927 (Science or north wing), and again in 1937 (west extensions off the north and south wings). In summary, early Central students were mostly urban kids and did not have to choose between school and farm chores. This is also the reason the rural high schools did not field competitive athletic teams for decades – fewer students and limited time for after school activities, e.g. gym was athletic team practice.

Posted in Central Athletics, Early History, Football

Central’s First Football Team by Charlie Sedman

On Tuesday, September 10, 1907, the Chattanooga Times reported on page 3, “The Central high school is now figuring on a football team.  Among the members of the county high school faculty is Coach (Curtis) Green, formerly of the Battle Ground Academy, Franklin, Tenn….it is believed he will put out a fast team at Central high school, providing money can be secured to start the movement.”

This answers the question, “Which came first, Central or the football team? And the answer is the school, but only by a few days.  The football team did precede classes in the new building by nearly three months.

I’ll have a few followup notes under the 101 Years ago heading, leading to Central’s first two football games in October 1907 against Baylor and City.