Each week, Destination Hudson will present a photograph of something in Hudson, and also an interesting fact about our town. Our hope is that you will enjoy the information about our hometown, and if you don't know where the photograph was taken, you'll go find out. The answers will be printed in the Hudson Hub-Times, and posted on Destination Hudson's Facebook page and at the Visitor Center.
Aha! I stumped a lot of you, even with clues. Next time you are on Oviatt Street, pause in front of the Hudson Middle School, 77 N. Oviatt and look up. This building opened as the High School in 1928. The main entrance was beneath and between the concrete urns featured in last week's picture, where the giant tree stands today. Until the 1964 opening of Hudson Junior High School (now known as East Woods Elementary) at 120 N. Hayden Parkway, grades seven through 12 took classes at this building. When the new high school opened in 1992, 77 N. Oviatt became the Middle School.
Speaking of schools - imagine Hudson schools back in the very early 1800s. Did you know… Hudson's first school was a log-cabin built in 1801 - there is an historical marker on the Green. In 1868 a "commodious" Union School with three rooms was built at the corner of Division and Oviatt Streets with three rooms! By 1875 it was already too crowded, additions were built, and the primary grades were moved to a building on Baldwin Street which remains a residence today. In 1886, the Union School was repaired and expanded, and all grades met there for a time.
Imagine the first formal high school graduation was in 1886 with a class of four students. The school district continued to grow and for a number of years Hudson high school students were able to attend the Academy as tuition students. This worked well until 1922, when the principal of the Academy announced that the Academy would only enroll boys (thus began the push to get a high school of our own). WRA was boys only until 1972, when girls were admitted again.
One final point - did you ever notice how until the new high school, all school buildings back up to a common area? In 1964, the School Board employed an architectural firm to develop a master 'campus site plan' for the district, which has proven to be one of the most important and far-sighted decisions in the history of Hudson schools. (Most facts taken from a booklet called "Hudson Local School District - A Tradition of Excellence 1801-1985").