Augusta High School “Redskins”

Augusta High School – 1954
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Courtesy of Frank Hedrick

The History of Augusta High School

Augusta HIgh School Bldg – Damaged by Fire 2005
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Augusta (population 600) is located on Illinois Route 61 at the intersection of Illinois Route 101 in western Illinois.  The town sits in the far southeastern corner of Hancock County.  A larger town of note is Quincy, approximately 35 miles southwest of Augusta. A branch of the Williams Creek runs through the south side of town and the At & St Railroad has tracks running through the center of town.

Augusta’s residents enjoyed their own high school until a consolidation effort took place in 1970.  That year Augusta consolidated with nearby Bowen High School to form the Southeastern School District.  The Plymouth School District joined Southeastern later and now the three towns enjoy the success of their joint school district.  The High School is located in Augusta in the original high school building.

The following description of the Augusta High School campus is offered by Robert Stienbarger:

“The original Augusta High School is located on North Center Street in Augusta and opened in 1857.  This original school building is currently used by the Lions Club for meetings and activities. The grounds are a city park. In 1919 the school board voted to construct a new high school on what was then known as “Catlin Hill”.  Joel Catlin, the founder of Augusta, built his home atop this hill, and hence the name of Catlin Hill. The new school building opened in 1921.  The building and wooded hill make for a beautiful high school campus.  The school was known as Augusta High School until the 1970 consolidation with Bowen and later Plymouth to form the Southeastern School District.  Southeastern High has always been located at this former Augusta High School’s beautiful campus.  The Southeastern Grade School is located in Bowen and the lower grade school now in Plymouth.”

For a view of a photo of the original Augusta High School building check out the Roots Web address of – sent to us by Roberta Mc Kiski.

The Augusta High School building met a sad fate in March of 2006.  Check out this newspaper article supplied to us by Bev Chenault:

Augusta High School “Quick Facts”

Year school opened:  1921

Year school closed:   1970

Consolidated to:         Southeastern School District

School yearbook:       “The Hilltopper”

Team nickname:        the “Redskins”

School colors:           Red & White

School building:         Now home of Southeastern High School

School Fight Song:    “Augusta Loyalty”

(Words Provided by Carolyn van Horn Sill class of ’57)

We’re loyal to you A.H.S.

                                 Our hearts are all true, A.H.S.

                                 We know that you stand,

                                 For the best in the land

                                 And we’re at your right hand, A.H.S.!

                                 Rah!  Rah!!

                                 For the years that we’ve spent in your care,

                                 We’re proud of your colors to bear.

                                 And from your halls of learning,

                                 We’ll go with hearts still burning

                                 Loyal to A.H.S.! 

                                 RAH!  RAH!!


Augusta High School enjoyed some great success in basketball over the course of its history.  The basketball teams brought home 5 District titles and 3 Regional titles during its existence. Baseball and track were also offered to the boys. According to the Illinois High School Association web site ( Augusta won its last District title during the 1968-69 season.


The Augusta Redskins had several close calls and fairly deep advances into the state tournament.  They also won many Hancock County Tournament titles during their existence.  Below are the championships and coach’s names as we know them.

Augusta alum Fred Hedrick (Class of 1957) had this to say about Augusta High School’s great coach and 1934 graduate, Coach Eugene “Doc” Cooper:

Coach Cooper (ACHS Class of 1934) coached at Colusa High School before WWII.  After the war he came home to coach at Augusta.  He did not have a losing season while coaching basketball at Augusta.”

1921-22                Hancock County Champions

1923-24                Hancock County Champions

1925-26                Hancock County Champions

1927-28                Hancock County Champions

1929-30                Hancock County Champions

1933-34                District Champs

                            Hancock County Champions

1935-36                District Champs

1937-38                Hancock County Champions                        Coach Max Brady

                            Regional Champs

                            Lost 1st Round of Canton Sectional by 3 points

                            Won 3rd Place Sectional Game

1950-51                Hancock County Champions                        Coach Eugene “Doc” Cooper

1951-52                Regional Champs                                        Coach Eugene “Doc” Cooper

1952-53                Hancock County Champions                        Coach Eugene “Doc” Cooper

1954-55                District Champs                                            Coach Eugene “Doc” Cooper

                            Regional Champs

                            Made it to Championship of Sectional

                            Top 32 Teams in the STATE!

1960-61                Hancock County Champions                        Coach Jim Lewis

1966-67                District Champs

1968-69                District Champs

Augusta High School’s top finishes in the Macomb-Western Holiday Basketball Tournament:


3rd Place- Augusta 67 Macomb (Western) 53


3rd Place- Augusta 64 Carthage 57


3rd Place- Abingdon 68 Augusta 54


Champ- Havana 55 Augusta 54


Consolation Champ- Augusta 73 Chicago (Bowen) 63


3rd Place- Augusta 44 Chicago (Bowen) 25

Boys Baseball

The Redskins had a great reputation on the baseball diamond as well.  Under the leadership of Coach Eugene “Doc” Cooper the Augusta High School kids won the Wenois and Lamoine Valley Conference Championships in 8 of the 12 years Coach “Doc” was at the helm!

Notable Players

*Carroll “Woody” Woods – played on 1928 and 1930 County Champs.  Went on to star at Western Illinois University.

*Harold Chambers – guard on the 1928 County Champs.

*Jim Hiland – star of the 1951 County Champs and 1952 Regional Champs

*John Juett – star of the 1955 Regional Champs/Sectional Finalists.

*Larry Hiland – center and captain of the 1961 County Champs.

*Jim Lucie – star guard of the 1961 County Champs.

*Harry Elbe – Augusta’s “Iron Man”, long time coach of Central High School in Camp Point and a well-known personality in western Illinois.


Seeking More Information

If you have more information you would like to share regarding Augusta High School please complete a School Submission Form or write us a note on the Guest Commentary page.  We are especially interested in a photo of the school building as well as records and coaches of the sports teams. You can also e-mail us at or you can write to us at:

Illinois HS Glory Days

6439 N. Neva St.

Chicago, Il.    60631

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