Topeka High School
800 SW 10th Street
Topeka, Shawnee County, Kansas, 66612
Topeka High School was established in 1871, and moved to its current location in 1931. The school offers a variety of sports and extracurricular activities, and notable alumni include Charles Curtis, 31st Vice President of the United States.
The Topeka Board of Education established Topeka High School in 1871, and the first classes were held on the 3rd floor of Lincoln College (now Washburn University). Over the next 10 years, the school was moved to various locations, including the Washburn Building at 10th and Jackson, and a room situated above the Topeka YMCA and Daily Capital newspaper.
in 1894 a new school was completed on the northwest corner of 8th and Harrison. A decision was made to construct a Manual Training High School across the street on the southwest corner of 8th and Harrison by 1903.
In 1915, an auditorium and cafeteria were added to the north school, and the old auditorium was converted to classes. Soon after, a portable frame building was constructed to serve as a study hall and library, and in 1923, an administration building known as 'The Annex' was added to the west side of the south building.
Overcrowding persisted at the new facility, made worse in 1924 when Topeka's Fire Marshall closed the school's 4th floor, calling it "the biggest fire trap in the city". A committee planning the construction of a new high school recommended that one large school be built, and that it occupy an entire city block. Construction of the new school took 18 months, and the total cost was $1.8 million. The school opened in September 1931, and there were 2000 students enrolled by the following year.
In 2005, the 20-yard swimming pool located underneath the gym was closed and converted into Laney Gym (after former swim coach Chet Laney). It is used for P.E. classes and wrestling.
The school building contains 4 fireplaces, and a greenhouse built in the late 1970s.
In 2000, the school installed air conditioning.
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