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History of East Fairmont High School

In the summer of 1917, George Colebank, principal of Fairmont High School, suggested to Superintendent William Hustead that East Side (Palatine District) start their own high school due to overcrowding at the current Fairmont High School.  In September of 1917, students from East Side started attending Fairmont High School - East Side, which was located at Central School (which is now the Op Shop in Fairmont).  At the insistence of East Side residents, funds were secured in 1919 for a new East Fairmont High School located on Morgantown Avenue.  In 1921, this new East Fairmont High School was opened and 1921 is considered the year of the official founding of East Fairmont as we know it.


East Fairmont High School - Winter 1946

The first East Side - West Side football game was first played in 1921.  Originally, the team was known as the "Yellow Jackets" but by 1944, the East Fairmont Bees moniker was fully adopted.  In 1929 the East Fairmont High School Gymnasium was built adjacent to the high school.  And due to increasing enrollment, more buildings were erected on the campus to house additional classes beginning in 1963.  In 1966, the East Fairmont High School Bell Tower was removed after being struck by lightning over the summer.


East Fairmont Gymnasium - Winter 1946


East Fairmont bell from the bell tower in 1943

In 1989, Marion County residents passed a school bond to build a new East Fairmont High School.  The area selected was in Kingmont, near I-79.  In April of 1990, clearing of the site was begun but discontinued several months later when boulders, tree stumps and limbs were found in previously compacted dirt.  Construction resumed in August 1991 and progress was easily visible, prompting weekly tours on Sunday afternoon.  The new school was finally opened in the Summer of 1993 to much fanfare.  The old East Fairmont High School was converted into the East Fairmont Junior High School until East Fairmont Middle School was built and the old high school was tore down in 2014.

Opening of East Fairmont High School on August 14, 1993

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