Modesto High School

Modesto High School Building – 2010
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Photo Taken by Dennis Downey
Sign Above Front Door of School Building
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Courtesy of Dennis Downey

The History of Modesto High School

Modesto (population 252) is located in the lower porton of west-central Illinois.  The town is about 20 miles southwest of Springfield and 20 miles southeast of Jacksonville.  Modesto was established in the northwestern portion of Macoupin County. Illinois Route 111 is the main roadway to and from Modesto connecting it to Palmyra just four miles to the south.  A railroad line had a major influence on Modesto’s early growth and development.

The history of Modesto can be viewed at .   Basicaly Modesto was established along the Chicago, Peoria, & St. Louis Railroad line in 1882. It was officially incorporated as an Illinois town in 1896.  It was named by an early settler of the area after the town of Modesto, California.

Front Entrance of Modesto HS Building
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Submitted by Dennis Downey

The history of the school system is in need of research. It is probable that Modesto had a school for its children in place by the early 1900s. A high school curriculum was likely established in the early 19-teens.  We know that Modesto High School served the town and surrounding farm children for about 40 years.  It was in the late 1940s that consolidation talks between the northwestern Macoupin County towns of Modesto, PalmyraScottville, and Hettick began.  The towns agreed to the effort and created the Northwestern School District in 1948.

The fate of the Modesto school building is being sought.  The high school for the Northwestern School District landed in or near Palmyra.  In fact all grades for the Northwestern District are located in a building in Palmyra.  If you have this information please contact us at

Modesto High School Quick Facts

Year opened:                        early 1900s

Year closed:                         1948

Consolidated to:                    Northwestern School District (Palmyra)

Modesto HS team nickname: unavailable

Modesto HS team colors:       unavailable

School Fight Song:                unavailable

Athletics and MORE!

We are certain that Modesto High School was a great place to gain an education.  The school likely offered the sprots of basketball, baseball, and track for its boys as well.  We currently, however, do not have any information that we can post regarding the MHS athletic program.  We are searching for team records, coach’s names, school team nickname, colors, school fight song, and any other items you may wish to share about Modesto High.

We are also certain that other activities were offered to make the Modesto HS experience a good one for all of Modesto’s students.  If you have any stories or information about Modesto High School’s other activities please contact us so we can share it with others.

To Provide More Information Regarding Modesto High School 

Contact us via e-mail at . Pictures of the HS building are especially welcome.  You can also mail items to us at:

Illinois HS Glory Days

6439 N. Neva St.

Chicago, Il.   60631

Modesto High School Building
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Photo by Dennis Downey

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