Centennial celebration set in Merryville for October

The Merryville High School Alumni Association will celebrate the centennial birthday of their high school this October.

In 1906, the residents of Merryville approved a special tax to build and maintain a public school building. That school was designated as an agricultural high school, with help from Imperial Calcasieu School Board Superintendent John McNeese. The two-story wooden building was completed for the 1907 school session. There were 400 pupils, five teachers, and Lloyd L. Squires as principal. Enrollment continued to grow because of the saw mills and consolidation. Beauregard Parish was officially separated from Imperial Calcasieu Parish in 1913. Rice Lumber Company donated 160 acres inside the Merryville city limits to the Beauregard Parish School Board to be used only as an agricultural high school.

The new two story brick school was opened in October 1919, housing first through eleventh grades. A separate facility was built for Home Economics and the agricultural classes were held in the barn. More facilities were built through the years as the school’s needs changed. The school was accredited by the Southern Association of Elementary and Secondary Education in 1954 and has been accredited since. In the late 1970s, the two story brick school was demolished and the site is a now parking lot.

The 100th anniversary of the 1919 school will be held Friday and Saturday, Oct. 18-19, in conjunction with Homecoming. The Homecoming Parade will be held Friday, Oct. 18, at 2 p.m. and the Homecoming football game begins at 7 p.m. The Alumni Association will hold several activities throughout Saturday, Oct. 19, at both the new and the old gyms.

Anyone having pictures relating to Merryville High School are requested to email them to: merryvillealumni@gmail.com

More information will be available on the alumni’s website: www.merryvillhighschoolalumni.com or on Facebook: Merryville High School Alumni Association.