The History of the Plymouth High School "Blackhawks"
The town of Plymouth is situated on the eastern border of Hancock County in western Illinois. The town
and its 562 residents are located on Il. Rt. 61 approximately 17 miles southwest of Macomb.
An excellent account of the educational history of Plymouth was provided to us by Danielle
(Smith) Marinelli (Class of 1992). The booklet, titled "History of Plymouth School, Graduates 1883 through 1992,
Collectors Edition," gives an in-depth account of the history of the Plymouth school system from its roots in 1836 until its
consolidation to the Southeastern School District in 1992. I will attempt to summarize the highlights of this account
The first Plymouth School building was a one-room log cabin school house that was erected in 1836. This
building was replaced by a wooden structure in 1851. This structure, in turn, was replaced by a brick structure
An association called the "Plymouth Education Society" was formed in late 1855 to early 1856. After
some dissention and bad luck in attempting to erect the brick building, it was finally finished in 1862. The building
was named the Academy of Plymouth School. It was 40' X 50', two stories high, had four class rooms, a recitation room, and
could accomodate 200 students comfortably.
An addition was added to this building in 1915 and a four-year high school was established. From 1883 until
1915 the school was a three-year high school. The first graduating class of 1883 consisted of four girls. The first
graduating class from the four-year Plymouth High was made up of 14 students. A gymnasium was added to the school in 1920.
Plymouth High School was recognized and given approval by the State of Illinois in 1947 to proceed as a
Community High School District. This meant that several of the surrounding country school districts would consolidate
to the Plymouth School District. In all, fourteen separate country school districts would consolidate to the Plymouth
Community High School District.
In 1949 a three-room school building was added to the Plymouth school complex for grades 3-6. In 1950
an agricultural building was added. Also in 1950 the Plymouth School District secured funding for a new gymnasium. In
1955 the final addition was put in place as part of the Plymouth school complex. This addition would have 15 classrooms.
The largest class to graduate from Plymouth High School was the class of 1936 with 40 members. The smallest
class to graduate from PHS was the class of 1905 with only one graduate. The final graduating class of 1992 had a total of
Student enrollment and financial concerns took their toll on the Plymouth High School future. In
the late 1980's and early 1990's, consolidation talks arose between the neighboring towns of Plymouth, Augusta, and Bowen. This effort was realized in the spring of 1992 with the creation of the Southeastern School District. The
high school for the new school district landed in Augusta.
Plymouth school buildings now host the Pre K-4th grade classes for the Southeastern School District.
Plymouth HS Blackhawks Quick Facts
Year opened as 3-year HS: 1883
Year 4-year HS started: 1915
Consolidated to: Southeastern
School District (Augusta)
Black & Orange
School Fight Song: "Our
Lyrics submitted by GARY R. MILLER (Class of 1974)
Click on button to hear music and/or sing along
I RAH for Plymouth High School,
Loyal and true.
fight for victory
And stand back of you.