Published 6:02 pm Thursday, November 12, 2009
In 1931 the state took control instead of the local districts and county having to bear all the running expenses, which made all school districts in the state on an equal basis. A gymnasium and a rock wall enclosing school grounds were erected through the WPA project.
In 1941 Mill Spring took their students and made their own high school, also Green Creek erected one in their township. Sunny View soon followed, which left Columbus Township with just their own students in high school. This made it hard to maintain a standard high school with a small enrollment, so that when twelfth grade was added in 1946 there was no graduating class that year.
In 1947 our high school students went to Mill Spring and Tryon High School, ending the career of Stearns High School.
According to our records from 1911 through 1947 there have been 858 students graduated from here. The small number was one (1914 and 1915) and the largest number twenty-four (in 1930).
Although Mr. Steams has gone on to the great beyond, his daughter, Miss Nellie (Helen) Stearns has helped us to carry on his work and there are many students who are still bearing testimony to his endeavors to give us a great school of which we will always be proud.
From his small beginning greater things have been made possible to us in the field of education in order that we may be able to solve the problems of life.
Columbus High School: Principal: E. W. S. Cobb
Class of 1911: Yates Arledge, Lafayette Cunningham.
Class of 1912: No class.
Class of 1913: Roone Arledge, Willie Cunningham, Alice Tallant
Class of 1914: Alpha Tallant
Class of 1915: Cora Edwards
Class of 1916: John R. Burgess, Heber H. Carson, Myrtle Hampton, J. T. Gilbert, Lucian Hicks, H. W. Hill, Austin Newman, Marion Mills.
Class of 1917: G. Marie Burgess, Roland Gilbert, Bertie C. Jackson, Johnnie Mae Jackson, Vadah McMurray, Odessa Mills, John T. Smith.
Class of 1918: Nellie Constance, Esther Gibbs, Clara Feagan, Coline Rippy, Gladys Smith.
Stearns High School: (1919, after the death of Mr. Frank Stearns)
Class of 1919: Arkansas Arledge, Sue Gibbs, Bessie Hamilton, Gordon Johnson, Sue Johnson, Ernest L. McMurray, Thelma L. Mills, Ada Tallant.
Class of 1920: Oma R. Elliott, Archie Feagan, Eula Jackson.
Class of 1921: Mami Jackson, Mattie Tallant. Principal: Clarkson and W. D. Loy
Class of 1922: Hildah Burgess, Aylene Edwards, Leona Feagan, Mary Young Hemphill, Elma Newman, Estelle Pace, Eva Pace, Gertrude West, Robert K. Landis, Mamie Morgan. Principal: J.W. McIntosh
Class of 1923: Edna Blackwood, Ruth Byars, Annie Dav