The History of Jewett High School
Jewett (population 232) is located in the lower-eastern portion of Illinois in the south-central part of Cumberland County. U.S. Route 40 is the main roadway to and from Jewett. County Highways #5 and #6 also bring you to the small village. Interstate Highway 70 passes by town to the north. The Conrail Railroad also passes through town. Jewett sits about 4 miles due south of Toledo. According to the web address of http://genealogytrails.com/ill/cumberland/villages.html
, Jewett was platted in 1870.
An excellent history of Cumberland County was located “on-line” in the form of a book titled “Cumberland County Illinois 1843 – 1993“. The book can be read in its entirety at the web address of
A nice history of the Jewett school district was found on page 63 of the book. The history is copied below.
“Jewett School started with a small school, located two blocks west of the last one. The last school was built in 1881 with the help of Alfred Williams, grandfather of Bess Laughter. It was a red brick building, later a basement and furnace were added.
In 1920 the inside burned out and was rebuilt. A one, then two years of high school work was added.
A front hall was added to the entrance in 1926. A frame room was added to the north side and three year high school work was made available.
In 1928 an outside stairway was added to the basement to meet state fire codes. Later a small two story gymnasium was built of brick.”
After the third year of high school courses was added in 1926, the graduates would attend either Greenup or Toledo high schools for the fourth year of study.
It was in the late 1940s that consolidation talks arose for the many small schools in Cumberland County. It was soon determined that the schools in Jewett, Greenup, and Toledo would consolidate to form the Cumberland School District. This consolidation effort took place in the late 1940s and likely was completed in 1948 or 1949. The new high school was located in the county seat of Toledo.
Jewett continued to host grade school classes in the school building through the 1966-67 school year. The final school classes in Jewett concluded in May of 1967. The school building was then used as a community center for several years, and may still be so utilized today.
Jewett High School Quick Facts
Year GS opened: 1881
Year HS opened: 1920
Year HS closed: 1949
Year GS closed: 1967
Consolidated to: Cumberland School District (Toledo)
Jewett HS nickname: “Redskins”
Jewett HS colors: unavailable
School Fight Song: unavailable