Trenton High School

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The History of Trenton High School
 
Trenton (population 2,610) is located in southwestern Illinois about 25 miles east of East St. Louis.  Trenton sits in the west-central portion of Clinton County on the Illinios Routes of 50 and 160 as well as U.S. Route 150.  The Baltimore & Ohio Railroad travels through Trenton as well.  A branch of the Sugar Creek flows through the north side of town.
 
The town's long and storied history can be read about on their official website page of http://trenton-il.com/Trenton's%20History.htm .  Trenton was a town whose early residents were of German descent.  It was officially incorporated as a city in 1855.  Trenton is one of the cities in southeastern Illinois whose population seems to be growing. The proximity of Trenton to the St. Louis metro area has given great hope to the town's future.
 
The history of the school system in Trenton is in need of research.  We believe Trenton residents began a school system shortly after the town's incorporation, possibly even earlier.  A high school was certainly established by the late 1800s.  Trenton supported its own school system through the mid-1950s.  The year was 1957 when the towns of Trenton, New Baden, and New Memphis agreed to consolidate their educational resources into one school district. The result was the formation of the Wesclin School District.
 
The high school for the Wesclin District is located about midway between the towns of Trenton and New Baden.  Dan Chamness provided the following information on the former Trenton High School building:
 
"The old high school building, that orginally housed Trenton High School was torn down. However, some of the building is still standing. The orginal part, which was built in 1886, was torn down. As an elementary school student in the late 1970's, I ate in the cafeteria which was in the basement of the old building. The part that remains, which was built in the 40's or 50's, houses some classrooms and the old high school gymnasium. The elementary school team still plays in the gym as far as I know. The old high school was converted into Trenton Elementary School.

As an elementary student in 1980, I witnessed the wrecking ball reduce the old portion of the school to rubble. They saved the main sign and the bell that was used to ring children to school.
 
The address of Wesclin High School is tecnically Trenton, but the truth is the high school, which was built in 1972, sits right between the towns of Trenton and New Baden. There is five miles between the two towns, and Wesclin sits halfway between the towns. The high school is located in the Western end of Clinton County, hence the name."
 
Thanks Dan, great job! 
 
Trenton High School Quick Facts
 
Year opened:                             late 1800s?
Year closed:                              1957
Consolidated to:                         Wesclin School District
Trenton HS team nickname:        unavailable
Trenton HS team colors:             unavailable
School Fight Song:                     unavailable
Athletics
 
The IHSA website (www.ihsa.org) lists only boys basketball for Trenton High School.  We believe that baseball and track were offered as well.  Football may have also been offered.  Trenton High School team nickname, team colors, school fight song, team records, and coach's names are all items we would like to share on this site.
 
Boys Basketball
 
The boys basketball team at Trenton High School had a run to the Sweet 16 in the early 1920s, an incredible accomplishment for a small school in a one-class system.  Trenton HS won a total of five District titles.  Team records and coach's names are being sought. District tournament scores were provided below by Mark Jurenga.     
 
1920-21               Team Qualified for State Tournament       Coach Herman Eisenmayer
                           District Champions
                           1st Rd. Trenton 28 St. Elmo 17
                           2nd Rd. Trenton 22 Effingham 16
                           Semifinal Trenton 18 Carlyle 14
                           Championship: Trenton 14 Salem 9
                           Sweet Sixteen Finalist
                           Lost to Streator HS
 
1922-23               District Semi-Finalist
                          Greenville District Tourney
                          1st Game- Trenton 15 Donnellson 5
                          Quarterfinal- Trenton 14 Fillmore 6
                          Semifinal- Greenville 13 Trenton 12
Account from the 1923 Greenfille High School yearbook:
"The Trenton game proved to be Greenville's hardest contest and the most exciting game of the tournament. Both teams fought neck and neck through the entire game. It was anybody's game until the final whistle and only Nevinger's free throw in the last half minute saved the day."
NOTE: Greenville would go on to place 4th at the state tournament in Champaign.

1923-24                District Champions
                            Semifinal: Trenton 17 Greenville 10
                            Championship:  Trenton defeated St. Elmo
 
1925-26                2nd Place in District Tourney
                           Greenville District Tourney
                           1st Game- Trenton 51 Marine 3
                           Quarterfinal- Trenton 25 Fillmore10
                           Semifinal- Trenton 17 Effingham 12
                           Championship- Greenville 31 Trenton 15
District Tournament All-Star Team
First Team
Kurz
Faitz
Ranz 
 
1926-27                2nd Place in District Tourney
                           Greenville District Tourney
                           1st Game- Trenton 22 Brownstown 18
                           Semifinal- Trenton 20 Carlyle 15
                           Championship- Greenville 21 Trenton 20 (3 overtimes!)
The account from the 1927 Greenville yearbook:
"Again we battled Trenton in the finals and beat them by a 20-21 score, but this game was not quite as decisive as before. O! Boy! What a game with three over time periods. It will undoubtedly never be forgotten. Both teams played 'wide open' with Trenton tying the score just before the final gun. Two over-time periods were played, with neither side scoring, then in the third, G. H. S. made a field goal. Trenton raised her score one point by a free throw. The pistol banged defeat to the Trentonians while the Greenville rooters went wild."
 
District Tourney All-Star team members:
First Team
T. Ranz
Arthur Becker
C. Herstein
 
1930-31              3rd Place District Tourney
                         Carlyle District Tournament
                         1st Game- Trenton 36 New Baden 5
                         Quarterfinal- Trenton 33 Okawville 13
                         Semifinal- Centralia 20 Trenton 12
                         3rd Place- Trenton 28 Highland 16
 
1931-32              2nd Place in District Tourney
                         Carlyle District Tourney 
                         Quarterfinals-Trenton 17 Aviston 13
                         Semifinals-Trenton 24 Greenville 17
                         Championship-Centralia 26 Trenton 13
 
1935-36                District Champions
1936-37                District Champions
1950-51                                                  Coach Bill Redden      
1955-56                District Champions
 
Need Your Assistance 
 
We are in need of a lot of information to make the Trenton High School page more complete.  If you have any information you wish to share, especially a photo of the original Trenton HS building, please contact us via e-mail at ihsgdwebsite@comcast.net .  You can also write to us at:
 
Illinois HS Glory Days
6439 N. Neva St.
Chicago,  Il.  60631