Ashland High School “Panthers”

Ashland High School Building – 2010
Photo Submitted by Courtney Dzierwa
Ashland High School INscription
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The History of Ashland High School

Ashland (population 1,361) is nestled in the southeast corner of Cass County on Il. Rt. 125 approximately 25 miles northwest of the state capital of Springfield.  The Panther Creek flows near town as well. Ashland was founded in 1857 as a stop along the Jacksonville, Petersburg & Tonica Railroad line. It was named in honor of one of the railroad line owner’s (Henry Clay) estates in Lexington, KY. named Ashland. (Place Names of Illinois, by Edward Callary)

Ashland has a rich tradition of education and competitive teams in high school athletics.  The origin of Ashland High School is not known at this time.  It is likely that Ashland High School was started in the late 1800s. Ashland High School continued to serve the community through the 1988-89 school year. In the summer of 1989 the high school districts of Ashland and Chandlerville consolidated in to form Ashland-Chandlerville Central High School.  The high school students attend classes in the Ashland High School building.

Ashland High School Quick Facts

Year opened:          late 1800s

Year deactivated:    1989

Consolidated to:      Ashland-Chandlerville Central High School (A-C Central)

School nickname:   the “Panthers”

School colors:        Purple & White

School Fight Song: “Cheer, Cheer for Old Ashland High”

                              Notre Damne University Fight Song Tune

                                        Thank you to Antje Hillen-Pippin








Ashland High School produced some excellent athletes over the years it was in existence.  The sport they faired best at according to the IHSA web site was Boys Basketball.

Boys Basketball

The AHS boys brought home seven District Championships! The best of the boys basketball seasons according to the IHSA web site ( are listed below.  Ashland is also said to be hosts of one of the longest running basketball tournaments in Illinois, a holiday tourney run over Christmas break.

1928-29    N.R.A.       IHSA District Champions          Coach’s name unavailable

District Scores Needed

                                   Jacksonville Sectional Runner-Up

                                   SWEET 16 Qualifier

                                   Semi-Final Beat Beardstown 26-16

                                   Title Game lost to Lincoln 30-15

LINCOLN (30): Lavalle 8, Gorens 7, Malerich 6, Keys 6, Froschauer 3.

ASHLAND (15): Douglas 8, Clower 3, Foreman 3, Moore 1.

Lincoln lost to Johnson City in Elite 8

Johnson City won IHSA State Title

1931-32    N.R.A.       Jacksonville District Champs  Coach’s name unavailable

                                   1st Rd Beat Meredosia 35-21

                                   2nd Rd Beat Chapin 31-7

                                   Semi-Final Beat Roodhouse 29-20

                                   Title Game Beat Jacksonville ISD 29-20

                                   Springfield Sectional Tourney

                                   1st Rd lost to Lincoln 48-8

Springfield beat Beardstown in title game

1933-34    N.R.A.       Jacksonville District Champs  Coach’s name unavailable

1st Rd Beat Jacksonville ISD 36-8

                                   Semi-Final Beat Murrayville 40-13

                                   Title Game Beat Jacksonville 30-14

                                   Springfield Sectional Tourney

                                   1st Rd lost to Hersman 24-22

Hersman lost to Clinton in semi-final.

1950-51    N.R.A.       Chapin District Champions      Coach’s name unavailable

1st Rd Beat Bluffs 58-41

                                   Semi-final Beat Meredosia 57-49

                                   Title Game Beat Chapin 48-44

                                   Jacksonville Regional Runner-Up

                                   1st Rd Beat New Berlin 53-44

                                   Semi-Final Beat Waverly 62-36

                                   Title Game lost to Jacksonville 55-49

JACKSONVILLE (55): Williams 17, Wright 12, Rhodes 8, Chapman 8, Kemp 8, Dillow 2.

ASHLAND (49): Bryant 18, Bergschneider 11, Owens 7, Wood 6, Willis 4, Jones 3.

1951-52    N.R.A.       Chapin District Champions      Coach’s name unavailable

                                   Semi-final Beat Bluffs 73-63

                                   Title Game Beat Chambersburg 59-55

                                   Jacksonville Regional Runner-Up

                                   1st Rd Beat Franklin 56-47

                                   Semi-Final lost to Jacksonville ISD 64-56

                                   Jacksonville beat ISD in title game

1955-56    21 – 4         Chandlerville District Tourney  Coach Ernest Hoff

                                   Semi-Final Beat Tallula 83-51

                                   Title Game lost to Easton

1956-57    28 – 2.       Easton District Champions        Coach Ernest Hoff

                                  1st Rd Beat Tallula 82-58

                                  Semi-Final Beat Bath Balyki 57-50

                                  Title Game Beat Easton 83-67

                                  Havana Regional Tourney

                                  1st Rd Beat Athens 76-63

                                  Semi-Final lost to Havana 46-42

Havana lost to Springfield Lanphier in title game

1956-57 Ashland High School basketball team members: 

 Jerry Conner, Gary Pearn, Jack Lynn, Denny Bast, Donnie Field, Wally Wheeler, Graham Rieken, Robert Savage, Glenn Savage, Edgar Birch


1966-67    16 – 9                                                              Coach Gary Tasker

1967-68    19 – 8                                                              Coach Gary Tasker


1968-69    22 – 7.       Easton District Champs             Coach Gary Tasker

                                  1st Rd Beat Astoria

                                  Semi-Final Beat Chandlerville 67-64

                                  Title Game Beat Easton 59-57

                                  Havana Regional Tourney

                                  1st Rd lost to Havana 65-56

                                  Manito Forman beat Pleasant Plains in title game

1969-70                                                                Coach Gary Tasker

1970-71    21 – 4                                                   Coach Gary Tasker

1971-72    18 – 7                                                   Coach Gary Tasker

1978-79    18 – 9                                                   Coach Richard Tillitt

*Coach Richard Tillitt was an outstanding fast pitch softball pitcher for the Wells

Fargo men’s team that was successful in the late 1970’s – early 1980’s.

Track and Field

Ashland HS had two individuals bring home medals from the IHSA State Track Meet.  In 1908 Ashland High School placed 8th overall at the State Meet.  Since there was only one class in those years this is a pretty incredible accomplishment.  Below are the state meet award winners from Ashland HS.

1907-08    Julius Timian            Hammer Throw       STATE CHAMPION!!

                 Ashland HS Boys Team finished 8th overall

1908-09    Julias Timian            Hammer Throw       2nd Place

1909-10    Julias Timian            Hammer Throw       3rd Place

1984-85    Dan Devlin                800 Meter Run         6th Place

Boys Baseball

1965-66     8 – 3                                                            Coach Gary Tasker

From Marcia Forman regarding the 1965-66 Panther baseball team:

After many years of defeat, the Panthers finally beat longtime rival Chandlerville, 1-0, but only after 10 innings of scoreless ball. In the District meet at Jacksonville, Ashland beat rival Pleasant Plains 6-1 to advance to finals of the District and then lost to Jacksonville 10-3. The players on the 1965-66 baseball team were-Ed Orne, Tom Johnson, Mike Hardy, J. Gardner, Cal Forman, Larry Lewis, Bill Mau, Gerald McLin, Randy Gutmann, Steve Meyers, Herman Mallicoat, Marc Durako, Rod Allen, Brian Adkins.

Other Sports   

Girls Athletics were also offered at Ashland HS however there is no information available on the IHSA web site.   The girls of Ashland High were introduced to a volleyball and softball program in the 1975-76 school year.  We are seeking information on girls athletics as well as any other sports offered by Ashland High School.  If you can provide this information please complete a School Submission form.


Ashland High School had their fair share of success in the activity spotlight in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

The Debate team qualified for the State Tournament in 1958-59.

The Individual Events teams won District Championships in back-to-back-to-back years: 1963-64, 1964-65 and 1965-66.

Seeking More Information

More information is being sought about Ashland High School; use the Guest Commentary Form or the School Submission Form to sumbit. Corrections are welcome as well. If you have more Information about Ashland High School, including photos of the original school building, win-loss records and other great teams you would like to share please e-mail this website at .

You may also write us at:

Illinois HS Glory Days
6439 N. Neva St.
Chicago,  IL  60631

Ashland-Chandlerville High School Sign
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Courtesy of Courtney Dzierwa

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