Happy birthday, Cuyahoga Falls High School: CFHS turns 96

A (brief) history of Cuyahoga Falls High School to celebrate its 96th birthday!

Dalton Husbands, Senior Contributor

Cuyahoga Falls High School (CFHS) is one of many buildings in Cuyahoga Falls with rich history dating back way before most of us were even born. The building itself turned 96 on Oct. 26.

Cuyahoga Falls actually had several schools before the high school we know today was built. The first known of these buildings was Central School, also called The Lyceum, which was north of Second Street and Portage Trail and was erected in 1871.

In 1920 the population of the Falls began to boom, and there was a need for a new high school, The school began construction that same year, and the building was finished and dedicated on Oct. 26, 1922. Back then, the Falls had a population of around 7,000, and the new school had a library with 4,000 books. There were also only three clubs available to the student body in 1920: The Athenians, Delphian and Chestnut Burr, all of which were literary societies or rather book clubs. If we compare those numbers of the past to today, the Falls has a population of around 49,000 according to the United States Census Bureau. Our school library has around–and possibly even more than–18,000 books, and the range of clubs is very wide and expansive with 30 clubs, which is 10 times the amount we had back in 1920.

In 1927, the school realized it needed additions to accommodate for the rising population and number of students attending the school. In 1948 the school opened the industrial arts building, and in 1961 the school had a expensive $3.1 million addition that added a ton of new and updated things to the building. This update was massive for the school, and these specific renovations and additions shaped CFHS as we know it today by adding a new updated library, up-to-date science laboratories, new music classrooms, a new business department, a modern cafeteria and more efficient office areas. This renovation also added the auditorium, which seats 1,700 people, and it added our gymnasium, which can seat 3,500 people and comes fully equipped with wrestling and gymnastics rooms.

The next and final major addition to the school would be a 12-room expansion for the growing vocational educational program in 1969. After this, the next updates to the school were all minor renovations and maintenance to help the school stay up-to-date and intact. These updates happened in 1977 to the original building, in 1979 to the industrial arts annex, and lastly in 1999 when the 1961 additions were renovated and repaired.

It’s been a long journey of much work, consideration, and, of course, money for this building to become the school we know today. It’s crazy to think that in the 1950s this school looked completely different than how it does now. If the students from back then came and visited, they’d probably be shocked to see just how much has been added since that time. It just goes to show that in these hallways, these classrooms, in our gym and our auditorium, in our music rooms, in our lockers and on the very ground we walk here, there is a longstanding, rich history crafted by the many, many, many classes of students that came before us.

Happy birthday, CFHS; let’s make it a good one.