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Chester High School: Class of 1914

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Class History  |  Class Officers  |  Class Members

Thanks to Dennis Bartow bartoden@comcast.net, for passing along this page of information about CHS Class of 1914,
Source: Class of 1914 Annual: Chester High School Vol. I. [This is the first Yearbook for Chester High School, Chester, Pennsylvania.]

History of the
Class of 1914
September, 1910, marked a great epoch in the history of the Chester High School, for then this great institution of learning received beneath its stately portals the great and glorious class of Nineteen Fourteen. What a splendid assemblange of boys and girls, especially girls, that nearer, clearer, dearer heaven of stars. But I must not dwell too long upon this gentle theme; for it is a subject where, like a babbling brook, I could "run on forever."

This was only practice to our boys, however, who repeated the process of a runaway victory on Nineteen Twelve. Feeling that the rules of etiquette pleaded for a slight recognition in seniority of age, we spared the senior class the humiliation of defeat.

Soon basket ball season came, and Nineteen Thirteen was anxious to avenge her defeat in this new line of athletics; but the contest that ensued was not a game; it was a tragedy. To our rivals it was a case of non veni, non vidi, non vici, or the Latin equivalent of hard luck. The game finished with the score 21-11 in our favor. Ye gods, what martyrdom! Besides completing our baseball season creditably, we also enjoyed the distinction of being the only freshman class with members that had earned positions on the first baseball, basket ball and football teams.

Our next achievement lay in the conducting of the Flag Day exercises. The program was splendidly arranged, and the selections delivered in that eloquent manner which characterizes the oratorical abilities of the Class of Nineteen Fourteen.

But summer was destined to end the first year of our high school career. It brought vacation, and lo! All that remains of the freshman year is memory.

September, 1911, saw Fourteen back strong in number and in spirit. Our strength was shown by ur unusually large representation on the football team. No man on the team played any better game than the Fourteen boys.

For several months the class quietly continued its work, although numerous individuals persisted in trying to wear out the carpet in the Principal’s office. But it is a true saying that the devil finds mischief for idle hands to do. A class cannot be expected to do nothing by study and attend games. Those on the teams work off the superfluous energy, but the others! There will be an outburst somewhere; so when Nineteen Twelve erected and trimmed a Christmas tree, the boys of ’14 noticed that the customary numerals were conspicuous by their absence. By clever manipulation-the details of which are not even yet understood by some-a gloriously impressive "14" was placed on the topmost branch. What a scene the next morning! The president of the senior class and the members of the committee who had trimmed the tree became colorless or flaming with anger, according to their respective natures. They banged at the numerals, but they stuck to the top. They searched for a ladder-in vain. By the greates imaginable effort on the part of these dignified seniors, the numerals fell.

A few saw the funny side of this prank, for, after all, it was not performed by the sophs in the spirit that the seniors thought. However, many lost their dignity in a most surprising manner. Who ever saw the good seniors of a respectable high school engaged in hazing? It must be confessed that one does not do this in polite society, yet the seniors swooped down stairs in a body, seized those whom they thought were ring-leaders, and placed one ‘14 lad under the shower bath. It may be said in passing that this lad and many others of ’14 have made better use of this shower in athletic activities than Twelve or any other class has done.

When all the rest of the school failed to assume the responsibility of supplying Chester with entertainments of literary value, 1914 took upon itself the task of bringing Mr. Marshall Darrach to this city. On the evenings of March 7, 14, 21, 1912, Mr. Darrach read "Twelfth Night," "Macbeth" and "Merchant of Venice" before large audiences. We cleared over three hundred and sixty dollars on this series of recitals and placed statuary and pictures in the building among the latter being the copy of "The Bargello," "Penn’s Vision" and "Ronen Cathedral."

The ’14 girls took an active interest in all the activities of the Girls’ A.A., which was organized that year.

The finest Peace Day program ever presented before the school was rendered by this class. No wonder the faculty said "There is good material in that class," and 1912 looked on with amazement and even respect. The term ended with good feeling on all sides.

Our first act upon our return to the High School in the fall of 1912 was to hold a meeting for the election of class officers for the ensuing year. Clinton Stewart was elected president; Marjorie Black, vice president; Ralph Pennington, treasurer; and Elizabeth Reinhard, secretary. The next step was to gain a monopoly of positions on the football team, and with such ’14 men as Birtwell, Cochran, Cramp, Hewes, Robinson and Sweney, the Chester High School enjoyed a very successful season.

The Public Debate now made its inevitable appearance, but a little if " stood between us and victory. Of Course! We really won, but by some ingenious method of reversing the order of things, the judges rendered the decision in favor of our opponents.

But we more than retrieved this defeat in basket ball. The contest could hardly be called a game; it was more like a tragedy; for when 1914 wiped the floor with the poor seniors, the latter demonstrated their efficiency as mops, brooms, dust brushes and vacuum cleaners. The game ended with the score 26-17.

In March the class once more presented Mr. Darrach to the Chester public. The audiences were completely swayed by his interpretations of "A Midsummer Night’s Dream," "Julius Caesar" and "The Tempest."

Spring brought baseball with all its glory, and Nineteen Fourteen won an undisputed inter-class championship. The junior middles were the only one able to put up a somewhat animated game, and they would have had splendid prospects of success if an express wagon had been used to assist their bush league pitcher in putting the ball over the plate.

The recital, however, was the crowning glory of our senior middle year; the grand finale to three long years of splendid work. It ushered in the close of the school term, which ended in a joyous class picnic, which will always be remembered; for the recollection of those happy days that are no more will earn from us "the passing tribute of a sigh."

The autumn of 1913 found the largest senior class in the history of the school back from its summer activities and energetic to assume the duties of the senior year.

We started unusually well. We elected a student council and Ralph Pennington, president of the class. The council was something entirely new to this school and at first it worked splendidly, and we were pronounced by our principal to have the true spirit and the right attitude toward discipline, but we have slowly degenerated, although we are much better than classes which have been considered "average." We expect 1915 to improve on our example and help bring this already excellent school a little nearer its ideals.

Our class has had the privilege of helping to bring about one of the most needed reforms in the school - the proper amount of school spirit. Certainly, we have shown our ability to work together for the benefit of the school. The support the football, baseball and basket ball teams have received this year has been far better than ever before, and the teams have responded by playing sportsman-like games.

A reception was tendered to the juniors on November 21, and every freshie will avow it was "right there." The program was varied and so interesting that it will not be soon forgotten by those who heard it.

The 1914 men on the football team did themselves credit as well s the class. The spirit of the team is shown in the case of the Wilmington Banquet and the reception to Easton, as well as the fact that all but one touchdown was scored by a "14 man.

On Thursday, January 15, 1914, Mr. Darrach made his first appearance of the season in our auditorium before a large audience. His reading of Shakespeare’s "Romeo and Juliet" was greatly appreciated. In the two following recitals, he read "Hamlet" and "A Comedy of Errors." Before "14 made these recitals a financial success, it was thought that the Chester public would not care for such entertainment or at least would grow tired of it after two years, but this was not the case.

The interclass debate was the closest and consequently the finest debate ever given from our platform. The 1915 team won by a very few points.

The girls’ oratorical contest was held on May 7, Miss Elizabeth Oliver, assistant in the English Department of Swarthmore College, declared the orations equal to those of college grade. Helen Rhodes won first prize, and Esther Nichols, second.

The boys’ contest was so close that technicalities alone could determine the prizes. The first was won by Joseph Koury and the second by Lawrence Ridington, with Arthur Billstein a close third.

This class also placed a representative in the Swarthmore Interscholastic Oratorical Contest. With the exception of 1911, this is the only class which has qualified for this honor.

And as this class of loyal students - mathematicians, orators, authors, poets, and athletes - leaves this school, some for higher institutions and some for the broader school of life, we heartily wish that succeeding classes may rise even higher the standards set by old 1914.



Class Officers

Junior Year

President – Clinton Stewart

Vice President – Marjorie Black

Secretary – Elizabeth Reinhard

Treasurer – Ralph Pennington


Senior Year

President – Ralph Pennington

Vice President – Elizabeth Reinhard

Secretary – Sara Riley

Treasurer – Ferdinand Nyemetz

Class Members


Armstrong, Kate 21 1908 From Dewey Grammar School

Baldt, George Clark 18 1910 From Dewwy Grammar School

Bates, Catherine 20 1909 Fram Larkin Grammar School

Bates, Charles 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Billstein, Arthur B. 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Birdeschevsky, Pincus 19 1913 From Cherkassi Male Gymnasium, Russia

Birtwell, Henry Taylor 20 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Black, Marjorie Chambers 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Clough, Marian Kinder 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Cochran, Donald Robb 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Cochran, Samuel Johnson 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Coppock, Marietta 18 1910 From Village Green

Cosgrove, Clarence Taylor 19 1910 From Trainer Grammar School

Dalton, Raymond 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Delaney, Nellie 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Dieffenbach, Ethel Mae 18 1910 From Norwood Grammar School, Norwood, Pa.

Dutton, Walter Twadell 17 1910 From Boothwyn Grammar School

Eby, Edna Mae 17 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Enion, Ivy Myrtle 18 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Fagan, Edward Joseph 21 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Federman, Albert Gellis 17 1912 From Central High School, Philadelphia

Federman, Esther G. 20 1910 From William Penn High School, Philadelphia

Fisher, Samuel Greenwood 17 1910 From Leiperville Grammar School, Woodlyn Pa.

Hanby, Francis [sic] 18 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Harrison, Marian Elton 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Hayes, Margaret 18 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Heacock, John Gelston 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Heffron, Warren Forrest 18 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Helms, Martha Darlington 19 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Hewes, Walter Elisha 19 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Hines, Lillian Agnes 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Hoopes, Sara Edna 18 1910 From Boothwyn Grammar School, Boothwyn, Pa.

Howard, Bessie Dunn 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

1942: International News Commentator, Station KYW

Ickes, Henry Adams 17 1910 From Norwood Grammar School

Koury, Joseph 17 1910 From Roman Catholic High School, Philadelphia

Larkin, Albert David 19 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Lentz, Mary Ethel 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Logan, George 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Long, Carolyn Hinkson 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Maison, Elizabeth Milne 20 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Miller, Helen E. 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Montgomery, Virginia L. 18 1913 From Avondale High School, The Model City

Moore, Isabel Clara 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Myers, Harold 18 1913 From Prospect Park High School [res. Moore, Pa.]

Newton, Miriam Esther 19 1909 From Larkin Grammar School

Nichols, Esther O. 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Nyemetz, Ferdinand William 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Orr, Anna Virginia 18 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Padget, Daisey Virginia 20 1909 From John Watts Grammar School

Paxon, Edith 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Pennington, Ralph B. 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Perry, Ruth M. 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Reinhard, Elizabeth L. 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Rhoads, Greta Manning 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Rhoads, Mildred Fulton 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Rhodes, Helen Shaw 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Ridington, Lawrence C.K. 18 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Riley, Benjamin Franklin 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Riley, Sara Smith 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Rively, Helen Adaline 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Rounds, Anna Louise 19 1913 From Prospect Park High School

Shaw, T. Edward 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Smedley, Alice McCay 16 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Snow, Harold E. 18 1913 From Prospect Park High School

Spencer, Anne Elizabeth 16 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Stein, Theodore W. 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Stelle, Katherine B. 17 1911 From Clarksburg High School, West Virginia

Sweney, Robson Beatty 17 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Taylor, Sara M. 17 1910 From Boothwyn Grammar School

Taylor, William 17 1913 From Prospect Park High School [res. Norwood]

Torian, Benjamin 20 1913 Media High School

Warwick, Samuel 20 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Welsh, Marguerite E. 17 1910 From Dewey Grammar School

Wilder, Helen Louise 17 1911 From Highland Park High School, Richmond, VA

Williams, May F. 18 1910 From Larkin Grammar School

Wood, Hellen Adeline 19 1910 From Larkin Grammar School


Cramp, Edmund
Crook, George
Eyre, Weston
Farson, Enoch
Freeman, Roy
Fulton, George
Harper, Josephine
Hayes, Milton
Logan, Lewis
Long, Lewis
Long, Farwell
McClurg, John
McCormick, Ruth
Morlock, Anna
Shusman, Nathan
Stevenson, Richard
Stewart, Clinton
Thomas, James
Thorpe, William
Wright, Joseph

Deceased: Clarence MacIntyre

* As of the publication of the 1914 Annual

If you have any information and or pictures that you would like to contribute about the history of Chester High, please forward it to john@oldchesterpa.com

2000 John A. Bullock III.

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This page last updated 10/18/05