Orrington Elementary School

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Orrington Elementary School
2636 Orrington Avenue
Evanston, Illinois, Cook, 60201
United States
School type Public School
Opened 1912
School district Community Consolidated District 65
Superintendent Hardy Murphy
Principal Renaud Beaudoin
Grades K-5
Age range 5-11
Enrollment 310
Classes offered ESL
Hours in school day 7
Color(s) Red and White
Song "Orrington, We Hail You"
Mascot Eagle

Orrington Elementary School is a public school in Evanston, Illinois that is part of Evanston/Skokie School District 65. It is located at 2636 Orrington Avenue, about a quarter mile from Lake Michigan.

The school received national attention in the late 1950s when its longtime janitor, Hjalmar Andersson, refused to sign an anticommunist declaration and subsequently was forced out of the school.[1][2][3]


  1. ^ "Education: The Man Who Played George". Time. 1958-01-13. Retrieved 2009-12-14. For 23 years as janitor, he kept the building clean and in good repair: no matter how much there was to do, he always had time to joke or chat with the pupils and listen to their troubles. But for all his good humor, Janitor Andersson is a stubborn man. Last week he was barred from the school he loves because of a rather odd and lonely crusade. [...] 'I pledged my allegiance to the United States and to God when I took my citizenship oath in 1932,' said he. 
  2. ^ "The Loyalty Oath". Education in America, 1960-1969: the educational supplement of the Saturday Review 2. Arno Press. 1971. ISBN 978-0-405-01236-5. In 1957, Hjalmar Andersson, an Evanston, Illinois school janitor, resigned from his job after working two years without pay because Chicago School District 65 couldn't pay him until he signed a loyalty oath. Mr. Andersson said he felt the law encroached on individual freedom. When he resigned December 1, 1957, District 65 owed him $7557 in back pay, but he still refused to sign the oath. Shortly after that, a statute of limitations permanently returned Mr. Andersson's uncollected checks to the school board. Today, at fifty-eight, Mr. Andersson is still jobless and living with his uncle in Evanston. 
  3. ^ "LOYALTY: One Man's War". Newsweek. For Hjalmar Natanael Andersson. there was no job as important as being a grade-school janitor. Andersson, a quiet giant of a man with blond hair going on grey (at 55) and frosty blue eyes, had swept the floor and furnace for twenty soul-satisfying years at Orrington School in Evanston, Ill. 

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