Howard E. Claggett

Howard E. Claggett had been born on November 27th, 1898, in Newton Ohio. He moved to Medina in 1928, ten years after his discharge from World War One. Mr. Claggett had been a math and science teacher and an assistant principal before his job as principal. He also coached football, track, and basketball. In the year 1928, Calvin Coolidge held the presidential office, the Kellogg-Briand Pact had been made, and the country began to cut itself off from the rest of the world. Cars became the new thing in the twenties, causing transportation to move to normal households. Next came household conveniences bought on credit. Businesses became Laissez-Faire and everyone could invest. However, this leniency caused many problems with the economy. The Roaring Twenties reached its final year. From the New York City, to the small town of Medina, to San Francisco. America had been heading straight towards the Great Depression and could not hit the brakes. The country had been like a freshly cut flower - beautiful and in full bloom, but slowly decaying away.
The 1950’s had been a time of mistrust and fear. The Cold War had just started and communism brought terror to the American citizens. Senator McCarthy caused fear and the rise of McCarthyism. People had began to lose trust in one another; whether it be friends, family, or neighbors. President Truman had engaged the States in a war against Korea, further amplifying the citizens’ fear. Three years later, when the war ended, the stress on the people lessened. Individual rights and dissent continued to grow, segregation having been declared unconstitutional with the Brown V. Board court case. Spending greatly increased, and suburbs grew with the white population, bringing to life the creation of the picture perfect family. Citizens of America, especially whites living in suburban areas, lived by the ideals of Enrichment, seeking easier, better lives. Medina was one of these suburbs, filled with farmers and illusions of the ideal families. When the suburbs grew, so did the need for more schools to house the ever increasing amount of students. Claggett had been the first principal at the Medina Senior High School in 1956. At the time, there had been 393 students attending the school. Eventually, Claggett would hold a position on the Medina School Board and would become the treasurer of the Medina County Fair Board. He died on October 12, 1986.

Images

The Newly Completed Claggett

The Newly Completed Claggett

An aerial view of the newly completed Medina Senior High School building, taken before the beginning of the first school year in 1956. The high school housed grades tenth through twelfth, as grades seven through nine had been taught at the present Administration Building back when Claggett Middle School, located on 420 East Union Street. Caption states: "You are looking down on a school plant that will make us all 'look up' toward a better education beginning September, 1956. The good people of Medina have provided us with facilities that offer a real challenge to all of us in the development of our future citizens." Image Courtesy of the Medina High School Yearbook 1956. View File Details Page

The Construction of the Claggett Building

The Construction of the Claggett Building

A collection of photos of the initial construction of the first Medina Senior High School building - Now being used as Claggett Middle School - before its first opening in 1956. These photos are a collection from the beginning to the end of the construction of the high school. The school started out as a grassy field. The lot had been used for baseball games and as a parking lot. In June of 1955, building a new school on the grassy lot had started. On November 4th of the next year, the school had been ready to be filled with students ready to be taught. Image Courtesy of the Medina High School Yearbook 1956. View File Details Page

The Medina High School Marching Band

The Medina High School Marching Band

A yearbook photo of former Medina Senior High School marching band members on the school football field. The formation of the "M" by the band members shows the camaraderie within the Medina Senior High School at the time, as well as the pride of the students in their school. The high school, due to the administrators' encouragement, dedicated an entire section of the building to musical education. As a result, the marching band, though somewhat lacking in members, showed great spirit. Participating in school activities not only brought students joy, but brought it to their families and friends as well. Image Courtesy of the Medina High School Yearbook 1956. View File Details Page

Claggett's Parking Lot

Claggett's Parking Lot

Image of a parking lot at Medina Senior High School, taken soon after the school's opening in 1956. This parking lot faced the south wall of a segment of the school building. The area in which the cars are parked in the image above has since been moved further south, to make room for a newer wing for the building. Because Claggett had been changed to a middle school, parking is no longer a problem for the students. Instead, teachers use the parking lot for their cars, and parents use the lot to pick up and drop of their children. Caption states: "Expect us to Walkz" Image Courtesy of the Medina High School Yearbook 1956. View File Details Page

The Opening of the Medina Senior High School

The Opening of the Medina Senior High School

A photo of Mr. Sidney Fenn, the superintendent at the time, standing in front of the newly finished Medina Senior High School at its opening. At the time, today's Administration Building served as the Junior High School. In the year of 1973 this former Medina Senior High School became Howard E. Claggett Junior High School with the completion of the current Medina Senior High School. Claggett still stands today, and still holds its position as one of the two middle schools in the Medina school district. Sidney Fenn, like Howard Claggett, also has had a school named in his honor, Sidney Fenn Elementary School, which opened in 1968. Image Courtesy of the Medina Gazette. View File Details Page

Mr. Howard E Claggett

Mr. Howard E Claggett

A yearbook excerpt from Mr. Claggett, the first principal of Medina Senior High School, which as of 1973, switched over to being for grades sixth through eighth. The principal of the school had been a serious and soft spoken man, who took his job very seriously. Image Courtesy of the Medina High School Year Book 1956. View File Details Page

Audio

Quote From Mr. Howard E. Claggett

Mr. Claggett's input on the new high school. Read by Nick. Quote Courtesy of the Medina High School 1956 Yearbook View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Olivia
Cassidy
Shannon, “Howard E. Claggett,” Discover Medina, accessed June 23, 2017, http://discovermedina.org/items/show/218.

Share this Story