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.

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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
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