History of Columbia City High School
Columbia City High School is 124 years old in 2005 and every year has been
alive with education, people and change. Before today's blue jeans and t-shirts, CCHS
saw long skirts and bustles; crinolines, pony tails, and saddle shoes;
and mini-skirts and go-go boots. It has taught readin' and writin' as well as
computer science and driver training. Discipline began with the willow stick and
evolved to psychology and suspensions.
Organized in 1877 by W. C. Barnhart,
CCHS first held school in 1880 in the first West Ward building, erected in 1869
one-half block north of West Van Buren Street between Elm and Walnut streets. Mr.
Barnhart was superintendent and J. E. McDonald was its principal. The two students in
this class were awarded diplomas in 1881, those being Miss Nathalie (Mason) Mullon and David S. Linvill, who became one of the town's leading physicians.
This building was demolished and in 1905 a new high school was erected on the
Until 1909 the faculty consisted of a principal and five assistants.
In the beginning CCHS taught the studies required for a four year course but
later introduced new ones. By 1909 the school had 225 students enrolled and
subjects included Latin (elementary Latin, Caesar, Cicero and Virgil),
history (Ancient, Modern, English and U.S.), English (rhetoric, literature,
word-study, grammar and composition), mathematics (algebra, plane & solid
geometry and arithmetic), science (botany, physics, zoology, commercial &
physical geography), music, physiology and civics.