Mill Shoals High School

The History of Mill Shoals High School


Mill Shoals (population 235) is located in northwestern Wayne County in the far southeastern portion of Illinois. Mt. Vernon is located about 25 miles northwest of Mill Shoals. U.S. Route 45 is the main roadway through town and connects it to Interstate Highway 64 just one mile to the north. The Prairie Trunk Railroad travels through town. A branch of the Skillet Fork creek flows to the west of town.

Mill Shoals was platted in the mid-1850s. Mill Shoals was first known for its barrell making industry. However the trees soon ran out. In the 1930s oil was discovered in the area. This helped Mill Shoals flourish for a few decades. The oil industry faltered (ran out) in the late 1960s and Mill Shoals returned to its agricultural roots.

The history of the Mill Shoals educational system has been difficult to research. Our guess is that a grade school was in place very early in the town’s existence. A high school likely followed in the late 1800s and was certainly in place by the early 1900s. We know that Mill Shoals High School served the community thorugh the late 1940s. It was approximately 1948 when Mill Shoals High School consolidated with nearby Burnt Prairie High School to form the Mills Prairie High School District.

The Mills Prairie High School District existed through 1977 when it, too, was closed. The kids of Mill Shoals today attend high school in nearby Fairfield.

Mill Shoals High School Quick Facts

Year opened:                      late 1800s / early 1900s

Year closed:                       1948 (?)

Consooidated to:                 Mills Prairie High School

Mill Shoals team nickname: ??

Mill Shoals team colors:      ??

Mill Shoals Fight Song:       ??


We are certain that the Mill Shoals High School boys competed in basketball. It is likely that baseball and track were offered as well. The best information we came across will be listed below. We are searching for more information such as team nickname, uniform colors, fight song, season records, and coaches names.


The boys basketball team competed in the annual IHSA State Tournament. We located scores from District tournaments on a website titled “Illinois Post Season Scores“. These scores will be listed below. Season records and coaches names as well as any other information regarding the Mill Shoals boys basketball program is welcome.

1934 Fairield District Tournament

1st Round – Enfield 52, Mill Shoals 22

Enfield lost in semi-final round

1936 Bellmont District Tournament

1st Round – Norris City 26, Mill Shoals 24 (O/T)

Norris City lost championship game..

This is the extent of scores listed for Mill Shoals High School on this site.


Mill Shoals High School was probably a well-rounded school. Plays, chorus, band, dances, student government, and other clubs and activities were a part of the MSHS experience.


…about the many successes accomplished at Mill Shoals High School.  The great teams and individual efforts of those who attended MSHS should forever be remembered.  If you would like to share information with us, especially a photo of the old high school building, please e-mail us at or write to us at:

Illinois HS Glory Days

6439 N. Neva St. 

Chicago,  Il.   60631

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