Filed Under Helena

Central School (Demolished)

Helena Historic District

Construction of Helena’s first permanent schoolhouse began in 1875 after relocation of the old mining camp cemetery that originally occupied these grounds. Opening its doors in January, 1876, it was the first public school in Montana Territory with graded classrooms, a high school curriculum, and kindergarten. By 1889, Central was considered the “most prized” of Helena’s seven public schools. A high school and public library (neither of which remain standing) were added to the block in the 1890s, followed by the school gymnasium in 1908. As Helena grew, Central’s seven rooms became inadequate. The present building, designed by George H. Carsley, was constructed behind the older school in 1915. Two symmetrical wings were added in 1921 and the older landmark was demolished. Still in service today, Central School maintains a place of honor as a historic cornerstone of Montana’s public school system.

Images

Central School
Central School Central School. Front/side view of the school building, facing north to northwest on Warren Street near the employee/teacher parking lot. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Side view of the school building, facing north from the school blacktop playground near the employee/faculty parking lot. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Rear/side view of the school building, facing east to northeast from the school playground near the hill leading to Cruse Avenue and the Seventh Avenue Gymnasium. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Rear/side view of the school building, facing south to southeast from the school playground near the hill leading to the corner of Cruse Avenue and Lawrence Street. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Side view of the school building, facing east to southeast from the north end of the school near the playground area. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Side view of the school building, facing southwest from the entry to the building off of Warren Street (location of drop-off and pick-up of students). Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Front/side view of the school building, facing southwest from the paved entry to the building off of Warren Street for student/faculty/parent greeting area. Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Kate Hampton Date: May 2013
Central School
Central School Central School. Front/side view of the school building, facing north to northwest on Warren Street to show Central School and the old Helena High School to the north (right of the photograph). Source: Montana State Historic Preservation Office Creator: Photographer unidentified Date: Date unknown

Location

402 North Warren Street, Helena, Montana | Public

Metadata

The Montana National Register Sign Program, “Central School (Demolished),” Historic Montana, accessed April 14, 2024, https://historicmt.org/items/show/694.