Archive ID: 2018-074-042

Bowen High School

Date Created: 1911-01-05

Created By: S.H. Knox & Co.

Donor: Raymond Mulac

Media Type: Postcard

Language: English


James H. Bowen High School 2710 E. 89th Street Chicago. The original Bowen School, an elementary school, was built in 1876 at 93rd and Houston Avenue. In 1882, a high school program began in the same building and a few years later it was named South Chicago High School. As the population in the community grew, the need for a new high school became apparent. An article in the Hyde Park Herald on May 15, 1906 announced plans for the new school and referred to it as a “Model High School.” The new school was named after James H. Bowen, a businessman referred to at the time as “The Father of South Chicago.” Bowen and other investors founded the Calumet and Chicago Canal and Dock Company in 1869 and began to purchase and develop land in the Calumet region for industrial and commercial development. The architect was the well-known Dwight Perkins. Plans included a lunchroom on the top floor, a 1200 seat auditorium, a 2 story gymnasium and a bowling alley in the basement. The bowling alley was never built. The new high school opened in January 1910 with the transfer of 600 pupils from the old South Chicago High School. The formal dedication of the building took place on June 7, 1911.

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