J. Sterling Morton High School East

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This article is about the multi-campus school in suburban Chicago. For the high school in Central Illinois, see Morton High School (Morton, Illinois).
J. Sterling Morton High School East
Address
2423 S. Austin Blvd.
Cicero, Illinois, 60804
United States
Coordinates 41°50′47″N 87°46′18″W / 41.8463°N 87.7717°W / 41.8463; -87.7717
Information
School type public secondary
Opened 1894
Status Open
School district J. Sterling Morton HS Dist. 201
Superintendent Dr. Michael Kuzniewski[1]
Principal Jose Gamboa [2]
Faculty 183[3]
Grades 10–12
Gender coed
Enrollment 3,580[4]
Average class size 23.0[4]
Campus suburban
School colour(s) ‹See Tfm›     maroon
‹See Tfm›     green[5]
Athletics conference West Suburban Conference
Mascot Mustangs
Nickname Mustangs[5]
Average ACT scores 16.3[4]
Website

J. Sterling Morton High School East (often called Morton East) is a public secondary school located in Cicero, Illinois. Morton East is one of three schools in J. Sterling Morton High School District 201. Morton East is a sophomore through senior building, with future students attending the J. Sterling Morton Freshman Center for one year. Morton East's sister school, J. Sterling Morton High School West is a four year secondary school. Morton East serves students in the towns of Cicero, Forest View, Lyons, and Stickney.

From 1920—59, the school operated as Morton High School, changing its name when Morton West opened.

History[edit]

In 1892, there were reports that the town of Cicero was beginning to work to consolidate a school district that would include the current Morton Park and Hawthorne district with one consisting of the towns of Clyde and LaVergne, for means of adding what was called a "High School Department".[6]

Though only seven miles from downtown Chicago, the school, in its early history was situated on prairie and farmland. In 1915, the Chicago Tribune reported that Professor H.V. Church, then the principal of J. S. Morton, was forced to walk his cow nine miles from Berwyn to the docks at Rush Street so that he and his family might have nourishment at their summer farm in Michigan, where they stayed the summer. The article noted that the principal was "following the example of the mayor".[7]

More than 20 students were expelled in June 1916, after a lemon throwing incident which started in the evening of a school play, escalated into fighting in the school cafeteria the next day.[8] That 1916 graduating class was reported to consist of 29 students graduating from "academic courses", 24 in "shorthand", and 8 in "bookkeeping".[9]

By 1917, the events of World War I were having an effect on the school. Students began raising vegetables on a six acre plot of land adjacent to the school in order to supply produce for the school lunch room in the autumn. The six acre garden was so consuming that the school withdrew their baseball team from the league they had been playing in to "devote (their) energies to the garden".[10]

At some point in the 1920s, the school began moving to a split schedule, with freshmen attending in the morning, and upperclassmen attending in the afternoon. This practice would continue until the opening of Morton West in 1958.[11]

In 1924, during a basketball game in the school's gym, a major fire erupted which caused US$900,000 in damage. The auditorium, girls' gymnasium, a library, and several classrooms and offices were lost.[12] The fire forced the school to temporarily move to a split schedule, with the 1,200 freshmen attending classes from 8—12:30 during the day, and the upperclassmen to attend classes from 12:30—5.[13]

Cicero's more infamous claim to fame is its association with former resident Al Capone. In at least one instance in 1930, Capone was known to attend a football game at the school "still surrounded by his bodyguard of six".[14]

Rather than receiving standard diplomas, the 1,045 graduates of the class of 1938 were each given pocket sized diplomas so that they may be "conveniently displayed to prospective employers".[15]

In 1950, a major reconstruction began at the school. The five old frame structures were demolished to make way for brick structures, including two gymnasiums, an auto shop, a greenhouse, two libraries, a band room, a typesetting room, and over 100 other rooms.[16] The expansion was not only in response to the increase in student population, which had already prompted preparations for building a second school, but that the older buildings were considered a safety hazard.[16] The addition was completed in April 1952.[17]

By the spring of 1956, construction had begun on what was to become Morton West High School. The school would open in 1958 reducing the population congestion in the school.[18] The graduation of the class of 1956 included a commencement address by the visiting mayor of Kansas City, Missouri, Harold Roe Bartle.[19]

In 1963, a US$400,000 upgrade to the main library was completed, including new data processing equipment, including equipment that would create and read punch cards.[20]

In 1966, Morton East's student government sponsored a performance by the Chad Mitchell Trio, which at the time included a relatively unknown John Denver.[21]

Architecture[edit]

The school's Chodl Auditorium was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983. It is one of the largest non-commercial proscenium style theaters in the Chicago metropolitan area.[22]

Academics[edit]

Morton East's class of 2008 had an average composite ACT score of 16.8.[23] 70.3% of the senior class graduated.[23] Morton East did not make Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) on the Prairie State Achievements Examination, which with the ACT comprises the state assessments used to fulfill the federal No Child Left Behind Act. Neither the school overall, nor any of its three student subgroups met expectations in reading or mathematics. In addition, the school overall, and one of its student subgroups failed to meet minimum expectations in terms of graduation rate.[23] The school is listed as being in its fifth year of academic watch.[23]

Athletics[edit]

Since 1985, the schools have operated a unified athletics program under the name Berwyn-Cicero (Morton).[5] Prior to this, Morton East competed as a separate school. Prior to the 1960—61 school year, the school was the only school in the district, and competed as Morton High School. Morton competes in the West Suburban Conference. Morton is also a member of the Illinois High School Association (IHSA) which governs most sports and competitive activities in the state. Teams are stylized as the Mustangs. When Morton East (and prior to that, Morton High School) competed independently, the school's teams were stylized as the Mustangs, but used school colors of maroon and white.[24]

The school sponsors interscholastic teams for young men and women in: basketball, cross country, golf, gymnastics, soccer, swimming & diving, tennis, track & field, volleyball, and water polo. Young men may compete in baseball, football, wrestling, while young women may compete in badminton, bowling, Poms, cheerleading, and softball.[25]

The following teams have finished in the top four of their respective IHSA sponsored state championship tournaments or meets:[26]

  • Baseball: State Champions (1942—43, 51—52, 60—61, 69—70
  • Basketball (boys): 4th place (1941—42); State Champions (1931—32, 40—41)
  • Gymnastics (girls): 4th place (1981—82); 3rd place (1979—80, 80—81)
  • Soccer (boys): State Champions (2011–12); 4th place (2006—07); 2nd place (1973—74)
  • Softball: State Champions (1985—86)
  • Tennis (boys): 4th place (1947—48)
  • Track & Field (boys): 3rd place (1938—39)

In 1927, Morton's boys' basketball team won the "Interscholastic Championship of the United States". The meet had been organized at the University of Chicago by Amos Alonzo Stagg.[27]

In 1941, the school hosted an amateur boxing night which featured Barney Ross, Johnny Coulon, and Battling Nelson (all former world champions) as referees.[28]

In November 1968, the school was to host exhibition matches with the Poland men's national volleyball team and Poland women's national volleyball team, however the teams were denied entry into the United States because of Poland's involvement in the Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia.[29]

Between 1983 and 1985, the Chicago Bears intermittently used Morton East for an indoor training facility, including their Super Bowl XX championship season.[30][31][32][33]

Notable alumni[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ District 201 Administration; accessed 19 May 2012
  2. ^ "J STERLING Morton East High school: Administration". JS Morton HS District,. Retrieved 10 October 2014. 
  3. ^ Staff e-mail directory; search for "east" staff; accessed 26 July 2009
  4. ^ a b c 2011 Illinois School Report Card; accessed 19 May 2012
  5. ^ a b c Morton HSs information; ihsa.org; accessed 26 July 2009
  6. ^ Cicero's Women Are Barred: They cannot vote for school trustees or school directors; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 8 April 1892; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  7. ^ SCHOOL CHIEF DRIVES COW 9 MILES THROUGH CHICAGO: Prof. H. V. Church Takes "Bossie" Along with Him for Summer Vacation on Michigan Farm; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963) 19 June 1915; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  8. ^ 20 HIGH SCHOOL PUPILS FIRED FOR ROUGHHOUSE: Lemons Thrown at Players in Morton High School Class Production Start Trouble; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963) 8 June 1916; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  9. ^ Commencement Days; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 17 June 1916;ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  10. ^ MOBILIZE BOYS FOR FARMS; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963) 4 May 1917; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  11. ^ RIDGELAND AV. IS MORTON HIGH DIVIDING LINE; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 30 March 1958; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 28 July 2009
  12. ^ 300 AT GAME IN SCHOOL NEAR PANIC AT FIRE: Loss Is $900,000 on Cicero Buildings; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 30 December 1924; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  13. ^ CICERO'S SCHOOL WORK UNHURT BY BIG BLAZE; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 31 December 1924; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  14. ^ CAPONE BECOMES A FOOTBALL FAN (WITH 6 GUARDS); Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 5 October 1930; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  15. ^ 1,045 WILL END THEIR STUDIES AT MORTON HIGH: Pocket Size Diplomas Will Be Given; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 5 June 1938; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  16. ^ a b 1.28 MILLION BUILDING BEGINS AT MORTON HIGH: Three Story Structure to Have 111 Rooms; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 18 June 1950; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  17. ^ School Groups to Tour Addition at Morton High; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 6 April 1952; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  18. ^ Hutchinson, Louise; Schools to Empty--But Principals Will Toil On: SUMMER BRINGS NEW PROBLEMS FOR PRINCIPALS Many Face Building, Convention Chores; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 3 Jun 1956; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  19. ^ Morton Grads to Hear Mayor of Kansas City; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 10 June 1956; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  20. ^ Morton East Has New Addition: Data Processing Taught Now; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file); 1 December 1963; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  21. ^ Mitchell Trio Will Perform in Morton East; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file); 20 February 1966; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  22. ^ Fun Facts about the Western Suburbs - Cicero; website for documentary Chicago's Western Suburbs: From Prairie Soil to Prairie Style; wttw.com; accessed 27 July 2009
  23. ^ a b c d Class of 2008 Illinois School Report Card; accessed 26 July 2009
  24. ^ Morton East High School "Mustangs" ; accessed 27 July 2009
  25. ^ Athletic Department for Morton High Schools; accessed 26 July 2009
  26. ^ Season summaries for Morton High Schools and Morton East High School; ihsa.org; accessed 26 July 2009
  27. ^ MORTON MARCHES TO U. S. CAGE TITLE; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 3 April 1927; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 26 July 2009
  28. ^ Barlund Will Testify Against His Manager (advertisement below article); Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 9 April 1941; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  29. ^ Teams Refused Visas; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file); 1 November 1968; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  30. ^ Jauss, Bill; Football :Bears left out in the cold by NU; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file) 9 December 1983; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 28 July 2009
  31. ^ Pierson, Don; Bears have a foothold: Finzer's punting an offense in itself Bears; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file) 29 December 1984; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; When the Bears practiced indoors at Morton East High School for two weeks, Finzer did no punting.; accessed 28 July 2009
  32. ^ Sherman, Ed; Flu may block Payton's path; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file); 5 December 1985; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; The Bears were anxious to hit the practice field after the loss to Miami. They practiced indoors at Morton East High School in Cicero.; accessed 28 July 2009
  33. ^ Sherman, Ed; Hampton overcomes in 'hardest year ever' ; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file) 8 January 1986; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; This season presented Hampton with more obstacles then he ever faced ... He had to forego practice when the Bears went indoors on the hard Morton East High School surface - it put too much strain on his knees.; accessed 28 July 2009
  34. ^ Harold R. Côllier biographical entry; Biographical Directory of the United States Congress; congress.gov; accessed 28 July 2009
  35. ^ LOU GAMBINO OF CICERO SIGNS TO PLAY FOR BEARS; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 23 July 1946; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; accessed 27 July 2009
  36. ^ "IHSA Boys All-State Players". Illinois High School Association. Retrieved 26 June 2010. 
  37. ^ "Phillip, Kerr and Fletcher Next on List of Honored Jerseys". University of Illinois. 9 September 2008. Retrieved 26 June 2010. 
  38. ^ Dave Kocourek stats & bio; databasefootball.com; accessed 28 July 2009
  39. ^ DANCED AT 5 AND NOW HE'S IN FAMOUS BALLET: John Kriza to Appear with Chicago Opera; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 27 October 1940; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; Kriza, now 21, attended Morton High School and Morton Junior College in Cicero.; accessed 27 July 2009
  40. ^ DeVries, Hilary; The Guy From Chicago Arrives - Joe Mantegna Is Having a Hollywood Dream Season; 9 December 1990; Los Angeles Times Magazine; p. 6; Mantegna attended Morton East High School, a sprawling place full of the children of second-generation Czechs, Poles and Italians ...; accessed 27 July 2009
  41. ^ Cromie, Robert; UNIQUE ROOKIE PLACES MONEY SECOND TO CUBS; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963) 28 December 1948; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; "There's no game lie it," says 22 year old Mauro, a graduate of Morton High School ...; accessed 27 July 2009
  42. ^ Bob Miller stats & bio; thebaseballcube.com; accessed 7 December 2010
  43. ^ Hampson, Philip; The Road to Success: Sketch of Arthur C. Nielsen, President of A. C. Nielsen Company; Chicago Daily Tribune (1872-1963); 13 Jun 1953; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; He was graduated from grammar school when he was 12, then went to Morton High school.; accessed 27 July 2009
  44. ^ Rookie paces Sting to victory; Chicago Tribune (1963-Current file); 5 April 1976; ProQuest Historical Newspapers Chicago Tribune (1849 - 1986), ProQuest. Web; Miro Rys, a rookie fresh out of Morton East High School scored a goal ...; accessed 27 July 2009
  45. ^ Clarence Self stats & bio; databasefootball.com; accessed 28 July 2009
  46. ^ Bob Will stats & bio; thebaseballcube.com; accessed 27 July 2009