Past, Present & Future
St. Mary High School
St. Mary High School
St. Mary High School 1918
St. Mary High School 1918

St. Mary High School

In 1887, Rev. Dr. Thomas F. Mahar, the Pastor of St. Vincent Church, was commissioned by Bishop Gilmore of the Cleveland Diocese to establish a Mission in south Akron to be known as St. Mary Church. The parish was formally established in 1896 and in the fall of 1897, the first Catholic high school opened its doors to students. The first class to graduate from St. Mary High School was in 1901. The first Pastor of
St. Mary Church, Father Francis T. Moran presented the diplomas. Members of this class included Mary Fitzgerald, Merle Schwalbach and John Gilhooly. Both of the men were later ordained priests. The first football team was formed in 1922. The basketball team won the State Class B championship in 1929 and was coached by Leo "Mox" Engler M28. In 75 years of operation, St. Mary High School graduated 4,351 students.

The STVM Alumni Office is proud to be the archive location for many of the memories, photographs and treasured scrapbooks of St. Mary High School. The following is one example as described in a "Graduation Diary" from one of the 13 graduates of St. Mary Class of 1922..........

"St. Mary's School is situated at Thornton and Coburn Streets, Akron, Ohio. It is built of gray brick and is set far back from the street. There are fifteen classrooms now in use and a well equipped library has been installed. The Auditorium for Entertainments and Dancing Parties has a seating capacity of fifteen hundred. It is also supplied with a Gymnasium and a Bowling Alley. The High School has both a Physical and Chemical Laboratory and a number of typewriters for those taking a Commercial Course. A Campaign is now being organized in the Parish to raise funds for completing the third floor of the School. The instructors are the Sister Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The Reverend Father Dines is in charge of the Latin classes and the Pastor and his assistants instruct the pupils in their religion."