Foosland High School

Foosland High School Building & Gym
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Foosland High School Building
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Opened 1924, gym added in rear 1940
Foosland High School
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Building Used Until Fire in 1923

The History of Foosland High School

Foosland (population approximately 100) is located in east-central Illinois in the northwest corner of Champaign County. Foosland sits quietly in Brown Township.  County Highway 8 is the main roadway to and from Foosland, connecting it to Illinois Route 47 just two miles to the east. The Lone Tree Creek flows past the south side of town. The old Chicago and Paducah Railroad (later the Wabash Railroad) ran thru the west side of Foosland. According to the railroad line passing through Foosland today is known as the Norfolk Southern.

Foosland was named for William Foos, who came to eastern Illinois in the 1870’s and bought the land that from Civil War veterans, who were reportedly given the land for their service in that war. Foos hailed from Ohio and laid the town out in 1874. More information on the history of Foosland can be read at

The first school established in Foosland was erected in 1878. High school courses were probably officially recognized at the Foosland School in the late 19-teens to early 1920s. We are told that Foosland High School was originally a three-year high school. The curriculum was later reduced to a two-year course. Kids who wished to attain a four-year high school degree would go on to attend school in nearby Bellflower or Fisher.

We believe Foosland High School closed in 1947. An election was held in 1948 for establishing a new school district in Gibson City. Those in Foosland voted to go with the new district.

The orginal Foosland school building was located on the west side of town until a fire in 1923 destroyed it. A new facility was built on the east end of town,opening up in 1924 with a gym being added in 1940. The school was vacated in 1966 when the grade school students were brought to Gibson City. The school was later sold and used for teen dances. It was torn down several years ago after a tornado that had hit and damaged the school.

More historical information regarding the Foosland High School building was provided by Gerry Halpin:

“An interesting note about this building is that it was designed by the well-known architect Arthur L. Pillsbury of Bloomington.  He designed over 100 school buildings throughout downstate Illinois, including many which are pictured on your website.  My alma mater, Reddick High School, was also designed by Pillsbury; it was opened in 1921.  Pillsbury (1869-1925) was tragically killed at age 56 in an auto accident while returning home from a University of Illinois football game.  While most of Pillsbury’s schools are no longer in use, the Gardner-South Wilmington High School at Gardner (built around 1920) is still open as a high school.”

Foosland School Building Cornerstone
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Foosland High School Quick Facts

Year opened:                           late 19-teens/early 1920s?

Year closed:                            1947

Consolidated to:                      Gibson City School District

Foosland HS team nickname: unavailable

FHS team colors:                    Orange & Black

School Fight Song:                  unavailable

Athletics and Extra-Curriculars

Foosland High School likely competed in athletics and other extra-curricular activities. It is known that basketball and softball were offered and possibly baseball and track as well. Unfortunately, there is no mention of any sport at Foosland High School on the IHSA website We are hopeful an area alum or resident can provide some of this information for us.

Foosland HS Gym To Be Erected 1940 Article
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The Orange and Black provided some local winter-time action on the hardwood, in light of the fact that they opened a new gym in October 1940, according to information submitted to us by alumnus Richard Shields. Previously, the team played its home games on the second floor of the local Odd Fellows Hall above a general store in the downtown district.

In doing some research thru some microfilms of the Bloomington Pantagraph, it was discovered that Foosland had a team as early as the winter of 1928-29 when it played in the Champaign County Tournament. An amateur team, similar to one that played in Ellsworth in McLean County, also was in action when the high schoolers weren’t playing. IHSA postseason tournament scores involving Foosland High School found on a website titled “Illinois Postseason Basketball Scores” are listed below as well.

1934-35              Fisher District Tournament          Coach’s name & record needed

1st Rd lost to Philo 48-25

Urbana beat Fisher in title game

1939-40  5-15                                                         Coach C. A. Stickler

1940-41  6-21                                                         Coach C. A. Stickler

1942-43  1-  8                                                         Coach’s name needed

1945-46              Mansfield District Tournament    Coach’s name & record needed

1st Rd lost to Tolono 69-27

Bellflower beat Sidney in title game

1946-47              Sibley District Tournament          Coach’s name & record needed

**1st Rd lost to Loda 90-10

Sibley beat Saybrook  in title game

**Last time Foosland is listed on this site, school likely closed in the summer of 1947.


In lieu of football, Foosland offered softball one school year, taking on Seymour and Ludlow in the fall of 1942. This team wound up 2-2 in an abbreviated schedule before concluding their season.

Seeking Your Assistance

If you have any information regarding Foosland and its former high school please complete a School Submission Form or a Guest Commentary Form. You can e-mail items to us at As you can see, we are missing a lot of vital information in our attempts to keep the memories of Foosland High alive.  You may also write us at:

Illinois HS Glory Days

6439 N. Neva

Chicago, Il.    60631

Foosland Grade & High School Building Erected 1924
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Foosland School Building Cornerstone Erected 1924
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Foosland HS Building Prior to Being Razed – 1990
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Foosland Bank Building 2015
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“Bank of Foosland”
Foosland Park 2015
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