Created By: Wichita History Walk
Originally built in 1923, Wichita High School was built on the same campus as the Roosevelt Intermediate School. The first day of school was October 8, 1923, and the initial enrollment was 1,654 students. It was known as the "million dollar high school," a notable sum during that time period!
Roosevelt Intermediate School was built using the cornerstones of the original Washington Elementary School, further tying the history of Wichita's schools together. It has been variously known as Roosevelt Intermediate, Roosevelt Junior High, and Roosevelt Middle School through the years. When Wichita North High was finished in 1929, this building became Wichita East High. While it was not the first location of a high school in Wichita, it has been the most enduring.
The architect, Lorentz Schmidt, employed the Collegiate Gothic style, with elements drawn from English Tudor and Gothic buildings which were quite popular in the 1920s. In 1976, a library media center and cafeteria was built for the two schools to share, and in 1990 East High took over the Roosevelt building.
Swipe to see pictures of 1920s-30s era student life, including a giant ball game for field day and a jalopy that clearly belonged to an East High Ace. Those sassy sayings written all over the car are the predecessor to our modern bumper stickers, proving the lasting power of teen trends through many generations. Common sayings included "chicken – here’s your roost" and "four wheels, no brakes."
This point of interest is part of the tour: East Douglas Heritage