Warrensburg High School

Warrensburg High School Building 1922 – 1950
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Submitted by Sally Hursh

The History of Warrensburg High School

Warrensburg (population 1,289) is located in central Illinois about six miles northwest of Decatur.  Illinois Route 121 is the main roadway taking you to and from this near-northwestern Macon County town.  The Illinois Central Gulf Railroad also makes its way through Warrensburg.

The town was first discussed being platted in 1841.  It was in 1861 that the Illinois Central Railroad was established through the area where Warrensburg was eventually inhabited.  The town was officially incorporated in 1882.  More on the history of Warrensburg can be read at the town’s official  website address of  http://www.warrensburgillinois.info/.

The following history of the educational system in Warrensburg was provided by Sally Hursh as reprinted from a book titled “Warrensburg 1882-1982 – Warrensburg, Illinois.”

**From pp. 33-34:

“By 1879 a two-room school was built and later became the grade school.

In 1890 enrollment had increased to fifty-six students which included thirty-seven males and nineteen females. The enrollment was larger than what the building could accommodate so part of the advanced students were taught in the Church of God chapel.”

“Warrensburg was just a plain district school until sometime in the 1890s when it became a grade school and the first Commencement exercises were held on May 12, 1899 in the Methodist Church (first built in 1875) .  .  .

Warrensburg School Building 1877 – 1917
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Warrensburg School Grade School 1893-1917
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In 1917 the old wooden building was replaced with a fine new building. It opened with J. E. Hursh, Miss Goodwin, Julie Faith and Millie Vaught as teachers.

Since that day, however, the fine brick building has become the village grade school  when the Community High School was erected on the northeast corner of the town of Warrensburg in 1925.”

Warrensburg Grade School – Built 1917
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**p. 35:

“Prior to 1920 high school age students who wanted to go to high school were required to pay tuition to attend schools outside the area. Most attended Stephen Decatur.”

“Residents of Illini Township passed a referendum in 1920, establishing the right to tax for funds to operate and build a new high school in Warrensburg. Following the passing of the referendum, little time was lost in establishing a high school. The ninth and tenth grades began their class room studies that fall in the old grade school building. The new building was completed in 1922 in time for the 1922-1923 school year to open. Dedication of the new building followed in the spring of 1923.”

**On p. 37 is a picture identified as:

“Student body of Warrensburg High School in its first year of operation, 1920-1921.”

In the 1950 the towns of Warrensburg and Latham  agreed to pool their educational resources.  it was after the 1949-50 school year that the Warrensburg-Latham School District was established. The high school for the newly established district was, and remains today, located in Warrensburg.

Ralph Whitsitt provided the following information on Warrensburg High School and the fate of the original high school building:

“My father graduated from Warrensburg-Latham High School in 1951. This was the first year for the consolidated schools in Warrensburg and Latham. The old Warrensburg H.S. building was used as Warrensburg-Latham High for several years until a newer facility was built on the other side of Warrensburg in (I’m guessing here…) the late 1950’s. The old building survived until the 1980’s when it was finally torn down. I’m not sure what the building was used for (if anything)between the time the newer high school was built and when it was razed, but the old ag shop building which was next to the old high school was still standing as of a few years ago and appeared to be used for storage.”

Warrensburg High School Quick Facts

Year opened:                                late 1800s (1877?)

Year closed:                                 1950

Consolidated to:                            Warrensburg-Latham School District

Warrensburg HS team nickname: the “Cardinals”

WHS team colors:                        Red & Gold

School Fight Song:                       unavailable


The Warrensburg boys competed in basketball and track for sure, according to the IHSA website (www.ihsa.org).  It is is quite probable that baseball and possibly football were offered as well.  School team nickname, team colors, fight song, and other items of interst are being sought regarding the WHS athletic program.

Boys Basketball 

A total of FIVE District titles were earned by the Warrensburg High School boys basketball teams.  The best records and coach’s names of the Warrensburg HS basketball teams as found on the IHSA website are listed below. Several scores involving Warrensburg High School in the IHSA State Tourney were located on a website titled “Illinois Postseason Basketball Scores” and are listed below as well.

1921-22     3 – 13   Postseason scores needed                 Coach H.S. Nichols

1922-23     2 – 6     Postseason scores needed                  Coach George Orr

1923-24     5 – 3     Postseason scores needed                  Coach George Orr

1924-25   12 – 8     Postseason scores needed                  Coach George Orr

1925-26   11 – 8     Postseason scores needed                  Coach L.M. Handlin

1926-27   12 – 10   Postseason scores needed                  Coach Glen Asbury

1927-28   11 – 9     Postseason scores needed                  Coach Glen Asbury

1929-30   12 – 14   Postseason scores needed                  Coach George Harper

1930-31   29 – 14   Postseason scores needed                  Coach Carl Mitchell


1931-32   17 – 11   IHSA District Champions                   Coach Carl Mitchell

                              District Scores Needed

                              Matoon Sectional Tournament

1st Rd lost to Hillsboro 30-21

Hillsboro beat Monticello in title game

Hillsboro lost to Berwyn in Elite 8 Rd.

Berwyn won state title


1932-33   16 – 10   Postseason scores needed                  Coach Carl Mitchell


1933-34   12 – 14   Decatur District Tournament                 Coach Carl Mitchell

                              Season Record Needed

                              1st Rd Beat Mt. Auburn 28-10

                              Lost in 2nd Rd (score unavailable)

1934-35     3 – 17  Decatur District Tournament                  Coach Frank Henry

                             1st Rd lost to Mt. Zion 43-12

Mt. Zion lost to Clinton in semi-final

Clinton beat Decatur in title game


1935-36     5 – 15  Maroa District Tournament                    Coach Frank Henry

                             1st Rd lost to Naintic 24-16

1936-37     5 – 16  Postseason Scores Needed                  Coach Scrkes

1937-38   15 – 9    Postseason Scores Needed                  Coach  J.J. Evers

1938-39     9 – 15  Postseason Scores Needed                  Coach J.J. Evers


1939-40      4 – 14 IHSA District Champions                    Coach Irl Schuyler

                             District Scores Needed

                             IHSA Regional Qualifier

                             Regional Scores Needed

1940-41      8 – 12 IHSA District Champions                    Coach Irl Schuyler

                             District Scores Needed

                             IHSA Regional Qualifier

                             Regional Scores Needed


1941-42    12 – 14 Decatur Regional Tournament              Coach Irl Schuyler

1st Rd lost to Moweaqua 27-24

Moweaqua lost to Tri-City in semi-final

Tri-City lost to Decatur in title game

1942-43    16 – 10  Postseason Scores Needed                  Coach Newton Drummond

1943-44    15 – 9    Postseason Scores Needed                  Coach Newton Drummond

1944-45    12 – 14  Postseason Scores Needed                  Coach Newton Drummond


1945-46    16 – 11  Decatur Regional Tournament              Coach Newton Drummond

1st Rd Beat Moweaqua 55-23

                              Semi-final lost to Decatur 77-34

Decatur beat Cerro Gordo in title game

Decatur lost in Elite 8 Rd.

1946-47    19 – 9    Decatur Regional Tournament              Coach Newton Drummond

1st Rd Beat Moweaqua 41-40 (O/T)

                              Semi-final lost to Decatur 81-37

Decatur beat Cerro Gordo in title game

Decatur lost in Sectional.

1947-48    19 – 7    IHSA District Champions                    Coach Newton Drummond

                              District Scores Needed

                              Decatur Regional Runner-Up

                              1st Rd Beat Mt. Zion 51-47

                              Semi-final Beat Decatur St. Theresa 45-44

                              Title Game lost to Decatur 60-33

Decatur lost in Sectional

1948-49    20 – 8    Niantic District Champions                Coach Newton Drummond

1st Rd Beat Stonington 60-29

                              Semi-final Beat Macon 79-52

                              Title Game Beat Niantic 46-35

                              Decatur Regional Runner-Up

                              1st Rd Beat Mt. Zion 48-39

                              Semi-final Beat Moweaqua 50-34

Title Game lost to Decatur 28-26

Decatur lost in Elite 8 Round

1949-50    17 – 7    Buffalo District Runner-Up                 Coach Newton Drummond

                              1st Rd Beat Latham 46-36

                              Semi-final Beat Macon 38-34

                              **Title Game lost to Riverton 45-42

**Final game for Warrensburg High School, consolidated with Latham in the summer of 1950.

Boys Track & Field

One male athlete made the town and school proud when he won a medal at the IHSA State Track Meet.

1937-38             John Major             Shot Put            2ND Place



**From Sally Hursh:


“The Warrensburg High School building was used as apartments for many years and has been torn down a long time ago. I remember one time many years ago when it just sat idle, I walked in and all around. On the walls of the narrow locker room upstairs were still the framed pictures of all the graduating classes in the 1930s as I recall.

In 1959, my senior year, we moved into the new high school which is still being used.

I do have another photo I will send you of this same school of which I took the 1970 picture

only it is dated dated about 1924. It was in some old things of my grandfather.”

Need Your Assistance

If you have any more information you can provide regarding Warrensburg High School please submit a Guest Commentary Form.  We like to share photos of the old school buildings and great teams and coaches if possible.  You can also e-mail us at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net or write us at:

Illinois HS Glory Days

6439 N. Neva St.

Chicago, Il.     60631

Warrensburg Grade School Track Event
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Warrensburg Grade School Building & Students
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Warrensburg GS Track Meet in Front of School
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Warrensburg-Latham High School Class of 1959
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