Wolf Lake High School

Wolf Lake High School Building – 2010
A picture containing sky, outdoor, building, house

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Courtesy of James Horaz

The History of Wolf Lake High School

Wolf Lake (population approximately 400) is nestled in far southern Illinois about 20 miles southwest of Carbondale (as the crow flies) and 3 miles east of the Mississippi River in western Union County.  Scenic Illinois Route 3 runs directly though Wolf Lake.  The Missouri Pacific Railroad line lays parrallel to Route 3.  The town is named after the long and slender body of water known as Wolf Lake which lays to the northeast of the town of Wolf Lake.

A bit of information on the town’s history can be read at http://www.shawneeheartland.com/towns.html.  Wolf Lake probably started an educational process for its children in the late 1800s, possibly the early 1900s. The town’s high school served its children well and by itself through quite likely the late 1940s to mid-1950s.  At some point in this time period Wolf Lake joined forces with its neighbors McClure, Grand Tower, Ware, and East Cape to form what is to this day known as the Shawnee School District.

The high school for the new District was located just south of Wolf Lake and keeps a Wolf Lake address. The fate of the original Wolf Lake high school building is not known. The grade school building (possibly the old HS building) is now used as a private business which utilizes heavy machinery.

Wolf Lake High School Quick Facts

Year opened:                         late 1800s / early 1900s

Year closed:                          late 1940s / mid 1950s

Consolidated to:                     Shawnee School District

Wolf Lake HS nickname:        Gotta be the “Wolves”

Wolf Lake school colors:         unavailable

School Fight Song:                 unavailable


Wolf Lake High School offered the boys sports of basketball and baseball.  This is evidenced by their Distric titles won in each sport. Football ws also thought to be offered as late as the late 1950s, possibly even later. It is also possible that track & field was also offered.  We are in need of the team nickname, school colors, school fight song, and conference affiliation of Wolf Lake High School.

Boys Basketball

As with nearly all small towns of its day, Wolf Lake High School loved its basketball program.  The team’s had a real nice run in the late 1930s winning three District Championships.  The program followed this with its only Regional Championship in 1941. Before their District Championship run, according to an area newspaper account, Wolf Lake didn’t have a gymnasium prior to the mid-1930s. Unfortunately the team records and coaches names of these and other great Wolf Lake HS roundball teams are not available at this time.

1935-36                District Champions

1937-38                District Champions

1938-39                District Champions

1940-41                Regional Champions

Boys Baseball

The boys of 1941 proved to be a talented group of athletes.  The only District title for baseball was won during the 1940-41 school year. This group doubled their winnings from the basketball season listed above.  Again, the coach’s name and team record are not available.

1940-41                 District Champions

Need Your In-Put

If you have any information regarding Wolf Lake High School, especially a photo to share, please write to us at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net.  You can reach via real mail at:

Illinois HS Glory Days

6439 N. Neva St.

Chicago, Il.  60631


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