Grossmont High School Buildings – El Cajon CA


Though the high school was originally established in the 1920s, the WPA carried out several projects on the school grounds in the 30s:

"Built by the New Deals Works Progress Administration during the Great Depression years 1936-37, our Gym has literally seen millions of individuals from the school and community pass through its doors to watch and participate in plays and musicals, the communitys Christmas Pageant, sporting events, assemblies, committee and district meetings, conventions, speeches, and practices and rehearsals of every conceivable kind. The Gym was even noticed in the April 13, 1959 issue of Life Magazine, highlighting the schools nominating convention. Now, the building only hints at its 1930s Art Deco origins, due to a millennial refurbishment that removed all the windows and added stucco to the styles tell-tale columns and rounded edges.

Along with a gym, between 1935 and 1937, WPA project number 653 planted palm trees and grass; remodeled the old Auditorium with classrooms; pored concrete for tennis courts; constructed a mechanical arts building that housed wood, metal, and auto shops (the shop building now houses the Boys Locker Room, the Weight Room, and other facilities); realigned and seeded the football field parallel with old Murray Drive; lined the bank on the home-side of the same field with stone and cement; built the temporary wooden building on the canyon; added a cement and rock terrace to the canyon (now gone); and built a bridge over the railroad tracks in front of the school (since replaced by the current bridge)."

Though the mechanical arts building was recently demolished, most of the buildings and improvements are still standing.

Source notes

Project submitted by Aaron Landau

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

1100 Murray Drive
El Cajon, CA 92020

Location notes:

Coordinates: 32.780200, -116.985270

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