Small-town school remains century and a half years strong
Harvard Public School turns 150 years old this year! The Alumni Association and the historical committee are organizing a celebration to reminisce on the past.
The celebration of the school will be held Memorial weekend. The annual Friday night barbecue and dance will take place as usual.
Saturday morning, town tours will be available for the public. Posters are being made to be displayed around town that will show past businesses in Harvard. The current art classes are creating posters to depict the school.
In the afternoon, there will be school tours provided by the student council.
At 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 27, the annual alumni banquet will be held. The incoming freshmen class will serve the meal, which will include the school’s original recipe for Yum-Yums, apple crisp, and cartons of milk. To add another touch, the meal will be served on school lunch trays.
Along with the celebration, there is a new graduate booklet being designed. It will include all the senior pictures of past graduates. These booklets will be available for purchase soon.
“I think it’s amazing to see how our small school has had so many knowledgeable professionals who came out of it,” said Ruby Adam. “We’ve had all kinds of successful people in just about every profession who got a quality start at Harvard to follow their dreams.”
Adam is the president of the alumni historical committee and the treasurer of the Alumni Association. Adam graduated from Harvard in 1970.
“I love seeing how the school continues to work with the community. Through the years, everyone has been so helpful,” said Adam.
The committees also hope to have souvenirs available to buy at the celebration. Possible ideas for these souvenirs include Christmas ornaments, metal tumblers, or shirts. They will have a cardinal image on them and say “Cardinal years, 150 years strong.”
The school in Harvard first came to be 150 years ago in 1873.
“The history of Harvard school parallels closely that of the town, for the frontier village was only more than a year old when the first school was opened,” according to the book "Harvard, NE 100 Years + 2."
Instead of the first school taking place in an established building, it began in Mrs. C.K. Morrill’s parlor of her home. The school consisted of only 39 students.
“By September 1873, a block of ground had been purchased and a building erected. During the ensuing 82 years, a school occupied that location continuously. The location was surrounded by Maple and Walnut Streets and Adams and Kearney Avenues,” according to the Harvard book.
Through the years, new spaces were added onto the building because it was so crowded.
In September 1955, a more modern school building was built, which is the current school.