High School (demolished) – Evanston WY


The former high school in Evanston, Wyoming was constructed as a federal Public Works Administration (PWA) project during the Great Depression. Construction was performed by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and completed in 1936. PWA Docket No. WY 1023-R.

According to the 1936-37 and 1949 high school yearbooks, the high school opened to students in 1937. “In May of 1936 the old Hallock building was torn down and a new high school building was begun under the direction of the Jacobson Construction Company of Salt Lake City, Utah, with employment furnished by the W. P. A. In January, 1937, some lucky students moved in for the first day in the new Evanston Senior High School building. The building was built to take care of the crowded conditions at that time.”

A new high school was built in 1968. It opened to students in January 1969. (Ottley 2019) The old PWA/WPA-built high school was repurposed as a junior high school. (Jim Davis interview)

After 1981, the PWA/WPA building changed use and housed school district offices. The 2007 photos in this entry show the building when used for school district offices.  The photos show some of the handsome architectural details of the original building, as well as the post-WPA addition of a white staircase to the entrance.
By 2010, the school building had been repurposed for a third time to serve as a school district storage facility. (Fraser et al. December 2010) The PWA/WPA building was demolished in 2011. As of 2019, site is a grassy area with a children’s play structure and benches open to the public. (Jim Davis interview)


Source notes

National Archives Record Group 135-SAR: Prints: Photographs rejected for use in the Photographic Report to the President: “Survey of the Architecture of Completed Projects of the PWA, 1939”; Box 23: Wyoming file; Folder 1: Schools.

National Archives: Record Group 135: Public Works Administration; Projects Control Division; Entry 52: Indices to Non-Federal Projects; Report No. 5: Status of All Completed Non-Federal Allotted Projects, page 157.


March 12, 2019 telephone interview with Jim Davis, retired City of Evanston employee, board member of the Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund, and a leader of preservation in Evanston. Served in different capacities such as city clerk and urban renewal director.

2007 photographs by Mary Humstone, member of the board of the Alliance for Historic Wyoming and retired University of Wyoming faculty member.

Dennis H. Ottley, Evanston, Wyoming: Boom-Bust-Politics 1967 to 1997, Izard Ink Publishing, January 28, 2019.

Clayton B. Fraser, Mary M. Humstone, and Rheba Massey. Places of Learning: Historical Context of Wyoming's Schools. Wyoming State Historic Preservation Office. December 2010, p. 328.

Project originally submitted by Evan Kalish on April 16, 2017.
Additional contributions by Linda Wing.

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Location Info

925 Summit Street
Evanston, WY

Coordinates: 41.2649833, -110.9679059

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