Fall City Brick School
When the Brown School (below) was completed in 1900, it was by far the largest school ever built in Fall City. Yet within 10 years it was no longer able to handle the increased number of students, and overflow to the Lyceum Hall and Falls City Masonic Hall was again needed.
In August of 1914, plans were laid for a much larger and more modern school, following the consolidation of Fall City District 20, Fall City District 48 (Patterson Creek) and Redmond District 128. Seven acres were acquired from Jerry Borst, bordering the Redmond-Fall City Road, and a large three-story brick building was constructed to house grades one through twelve. The cornerstone was laid on July 24, 1915 and the faculty and students moved in during January of the following year.
From kerosene lamps to electric lights and from outhouses to flush toilets in one giant leap! The new school was much larger and more fully equipped, allowing the faculty to offer a more extensive curriculum. Manual training, home economics, sciences and commercial subjects were added. On the third floor, there was an auditorium where assemblies were held and plays enjoyed.
Shortly after the Brick School was operational, a gymnasium was built next door. Then in 1931, a larger brick gymnasium featuring a generous stage replaced that building. Subsequently, the third floor auditorium of the Brick School was made into a study hall and classrooms. In the mid-1920s, a house was built on the school grounds for the principal and a play shed erected as an outside place for the smaller students to play during inclement weather. When electricity and running water finally came to town in the mid-1920s, the gasoline generator and the water well in the school basement were abandoned in favor of more dependable commercial services.
The photo below shows the gymnasium shortly after it was built in 1931. It is still in use today.
Below is a photo showing the overall layout in 1948, with play shed, gymnasium and principal's house.
By the time World War II was in full swing, it was becoming increasingly difficult to give students the best education, due to rising costs and dwindling student population. The voters approved the consolidation of Cedar Falls, North Bend, Snoqualmie and Fall City School Districts into Snoqualmie Valley School District 410. High school students from Fall City then attended Mt Si High School in Snoqualmie. The final days of school in 1944 were pretty tough for those looking forward to attending high school in Fall City. That year the last Senior class graduated from Fall City High School. The last graduating class had ten students (nine boys and one girl) with five boys receiving diplomas: Melvin Cernich, Bob Tallman, Don Mulanax, Bob Heatherington and Lonnie Ewing.
The photo below shows the Class of 1944, taken in their Junior year. No Senior photos exist, to our knowledge.
Starting in the fall of 1944, Fall City eighth graders and high school students would attend Mount Si High School in Snoqualmie. It was the end of an era. Following consolidation, the Brick School continued in use as the Fall City Grade School until 1962, when a new facility was built next to the gymnasium. The Brick School that had heard the sound of children's laughter for more than 55 years was demolished in 1970.
Below is the Brick School shortly before demolition.
Demolition occurred in 1970, as shown in photo below. Fall City folks were told that they were welcome to salvage bricks during the process, and many a patio around town was built with pieces of the now historic school.
This diagram (above) of the Brick School, showing how various areas were used, was put together by Jack Kelley as part of Jack's History of Fall City, 2006. A long section (pages 110-118) on Memories of the Brick School is included in the book, and may be accessed also through our website as part of the Brick School Sign report links. The Education chapter (pages 5-34) in Preserving the Stories of Fall City, 2010 offers many school photos and memories of folks growing up in Fall City. It may also be accessed through our website with the Brick School Sign report.
The Fall City High School sports mascot was the SHARK...shown below in a 1941 graphic. For the story of how the shark became mascot in about 1935, see page 22 of Preserving the Stories of Fall City.
The Brick School in the Fall City Archives
Thanks to Jack and Judy Kelley and many other generous donors, we have a wealth of materials about the Brick School in our collection. Below is a partial list:
A searchable list of all Fall City High School graduates, both by last name and by year of graduation.
Graduation programs for most classes from 1904 through 1944
School newspapers, many issues from 1919 to 1940s.
Programs for school plays over a wide span of years
Large numbers of school photos, from kindergarten to senior photos
Note: if you are searching for a specific person, go to our online collection through the website, and search for "Class of YYYY" under PEOPLE. If you don't know the graduation date, use the index mentioned above to find it.
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if you have specific questions.
**Much of the materials used for this report is excerpted from Jack's History of Fall City. We all owe a debt of gratitude to Jack and Judy Kelley for their work on this gift of local history.
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