Chicago Near North High School “Huskies”

The History of Chicago Near North High School

Chicago Near North High School
courtesy of Info USA

Chicago (population: 2.8 million) is located along the shores of Lake Michigan in northeastern Illinois. From its early days as a Potawatomie settlement, then as the site of Fort Dearborn in 1803, which led up to the formation of the city and its incorporation in 1833 and 1837, respectively, the “City of Big Shoulders” became a major location in the US for various reasons. Railroads and water transportation were two reasons why Chicago was one of the fastest growing cities in the country during the 19th Century.

Today, numerous railroads and highways of interstate, US, state, and local designations bring people together in the city on a daily basis, as does air traffic at O’Hare and Midway Airports. Chicago is a melting pot of people from many nationalities, making it ethnically diverse, and thus, is referred to as “the cultural, economic, and financial capital of the Midwest” (according to Wikipedia).

It is our understanding in researching Near North High School that it replaced the former Cooley High School around the late 1970’s, being located at 1450 North Larrabee. Near North educated students from the “near north” side of Chicago, and continued to do so until closing after the 2000-01 school year as 2001 graduate Jay Ferguson tells us.

The building that housed Near North still stands today. As Garrett Klunk let us know, it is still utilized as a training facility for the Chicago Fire Department. A nice website for Near North High School alumni to visit is:


Year opened:         about 1979

Year closed:          2001

School colors:       Maroon & Gold

School nickname:  the “Huskies”

School song:         “It’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday”


Near North did offer football and basketball to its male athletes, and possibly others. We are uncertain as to whether girls’ sports were offered at the school, although the possibility is likely. If you know any details about the school’s athletic history, please contact at the addresses below.

An directory from the IHSA regarding member schools published in 1991 listed the following sports information regarding Near North High School as researched by Dave Haberkorn:

“As of July 1991 sports offered (with coaches) include football (Lowell Bouck), basketball (Jimmy Johnson), baseball (Gene House) for boys and basketball (Kenneth Couch), bowling (Patricia Lewis), softball (Jan Ramirez) and volleyball (Penny Padley) for girls.”


Near North had some successes on the gridiron while its doors were open. The school qualified for one state playoff berth under coach Lowell Bouck and had four winning seasons out of five in the late 1980’s. Here’s a look at their records:

1985    5-  4                                                     Coach Lowell Bouck

1986    5-  4                                                     Coach Lowell Bouck

1987    5-  3                                                     Coach Lowell Bouck

1988    5-  5                                                     Coach Lowell Bouck

1989    8-  2     Class 4A qualifier                     Coach Lowell Bouck

Lost to Oak Forest in first round, 27-18

1990    3-  6                                                     coach unknown

1991    4-  4                                                     coach unknown

1992    4-  5                                                     coach unknown

1993    2-  6                                                     coach unknown

1994    1-  7                                                     coach unknown

1995    1-  7                                                     coach unknown

1996    0-10                                                     coach unknown

1997    0-  7                                                     coach unknown

1998    1-  3     Last season                              coach unknown


The school did offer the hoops action to the boys, and they engaged in some high-scoring battles with another former Chicago high school that is featured on this site, Creiger. More about those battles can be found by clicking on the link to the Creiger page.

1997-98                        Coach Marvin Williams

1998-99                        Coach Marvin Williams

1999-00                        Coach Marvin Williams

2000-01                        Coach Marvin Williams


Claudia Enamorado tells us this much about the Near North High School volleyball program:

“I went to Near North from 1996-2000 and I was in the Volleball team that Mrs. Marie Chaparro coached all these years. There was also track, girls basketball, cheerleading and softball. I miss the HS years!”

1996-97                Coach Marie Chaparro

1997-98                Coach Marie Chaparro

1998-99                Coach Marie Chaparro

1999-2000             Coach Marie Chaparro


From Malena Norman:

“I attended Near North from 1992 to 1994, then I transferred to Austin for my Jr. year. I have a yearbook that might have the name of the school’s song. I do have a teacher that I loved. She made school fun for me, her name is Ms. Weiss. I still, to this day, take my kids by the old building and tell them about the sock hops and the school dances and how the Lincoln Park school kids would try to beat up the kids from Near North while standing at the North Ave. bus stop. For lunch, I enjoyed going to Terry’s for french fries because we had open campus, those were the days!”

From Coach Marvin Williams:

“Well what a joy this is to find such a web page for all the great Near North students to reach back to! This one of our schools’ old coaches. (Marvin Williams). I was there, from 1991 – 2001 when the last day the doors close on one of the greatest high schools on the northside of Chicago! I miss all of my co-workers so! Even with the blessing of having some contacts with just a few. Yes, we put together the best group of staff there to handle the brightest kids and loving students you could work with! I hope the best of life for all of you who get to vist this website! I’m doing fine! Yes, your finest is still coaching boys basketball for CPS high school. After I left Near North high school. I went on to coach grade school ball for five years. At the 7th & 8th grade level at Robert Emmet grade school. While there I was able to take them to a 189-6 record. Winning two city champoinships when there! Wow, what a blast it was coaching younger kids! But I hurt so bad to go back into the high school hoopworld. So I left to get back in the game. I’m now working and coaching at Von Steuben high school, up north. Where, for the pass two years, I’m coaching the sophomore boys basketball team. Its been rewarding, working and coaching at such a fine school! There the past two seasons I have coached two winning teams. Going (44-6) as one of the best sophomore teams in the city! But as I think back to my Near North teams. I miss those days so bad! Boy, how I wish those doors were still open now! Some of the best ball for all sports was played on ground in greatest school in the city! So to everyone. I give my love and heart to you all!  And wish you God’s blessing ! We’ll stay in touch, for now on!”


Chicago Near North High School, then by all means contact us. We’d like to hear from you if you have information about the words to the school song, win-loss records of sports teams, names of outstanding educators at the school, famous alumni, and even photos of the school are some of the things we’re looking for.

Please contact us by clicking on this CONTACT US link, sending an email to, or by paying the postage to send it via the USPS. Our address is:

IHSGD Website

6439 North Neva

Chicago, IL  60631

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