|Old Belvidere North High School|
|The History of North and South High Schools, Belvidere, Ill.
Belvidere (population 24,593) is the county seat of Boone County, located in northern Illinois about ten miles east of Rockford and 40 miles northwest of the greater Chicago area. Belvidere is home to Belvidere Assembly, long time makers of the Dodge Neon, and is one of the fastest growing cities in Illinois. Today, Belvidere has two high schools; however for a long period of time there was just one – which was formed with the merging of two schools.
First settled in 1835 by John K. Towner, the town achieved ultimate survival with the passing of the State Road between Chicago and Galena one year later. The town was incorporated in 1857.
The town is separated by the Kishwaukee River, north and south. The north side of town was settled first, with the south side developing about twenty years after the town’s incorporation due to the coming of the railroad. The north side laid claim to the first school in Belvidere.
A schoolhouse was built in the north side of Belvidere in 1854. It is believed high school education began in the 1860s under the direction of Henry J. Sherrill, according to the 1877 History of Boone County.
In 1874, with the growth of the south part of Belvidere, a school was built already containing a high school curriculum.
These two high schools survived on their own until no later than 1912, when a single high school was organized. (The consolidation is similar to Batavia East and West high schools, also listed on this site.)
Belvidere North and South High Schools – Quick Facts:
Year North side school opened: 1854
Year South side school opened: 1874
Consolidated: Between 1909-1912
School Colors: Unknown for both
School Song: Unknown if existent for both
We have no current evidence, but we do believe that the high schools of North Belvidere and South Belvidere offered basketball or football for the boys. Each probably offered baseball as well. The two schools may have combined programs prior to merging as “Union” programs.
If you have any information on the activities offered at North and South Belvidere High Schools please do not hesitate to contact us.
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