April 21 “All Dayton School Reunion” marks the 100th anniversary of the old Dayton High School


When it opened in 1918, this Dayton High School building had four modern classrooms and a gymnasium that served as the town’s auditorium from community dances and Christmas celebrations through the 1960s. The new Dayton High School opened in 1982. Today, this building is the Dayton Valley Community Center. (Laura Tennant photo.)

Courtesy Laura Tennant

On April 21, the Dayton Preservation Committee and the Historical Society of Dayton Valley are sponsoring an “All Dayton School Reunion” (1865–2008) to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the completion of Dayton’s first high school in 1918. The Reunion site is at the “original” building at 170 Pike Street in Historic Old Town Dayton starting at 1 p.m. and spaghetti feed dinner will be served at 5 p.m. and drinks will be sold with funds used to continue preserving the stately elderly building.

Ancestors of students of the Old High School are asked to attend and bring memorabilia, including photographs. Display tables will be available.

Please pass the word to your friends and relatives who attended school in Dayton.


See copies of the 1919 first-ever Dayton high school annual, The Desert Canary, that reveals the history of where the high school students attended before and after 1918 and tours of the town’s 1865 Schoolhouse Museum, firehouse/jail and high school itself.

Highlights of the event include historic displays and exhibits of families whose pioneer relatives attended the first schools and historical photos and town history. The Dayton Grammar School opened in 1865; prior to that time, students were educated in private homes. After 1865, high school classes were held in the grammar school building.

Call Jannette Hoffert/Ruth Small, (775) 301-9567, Gloria Manning, (775) 461-3829, Laura Tennant, (775) 246-3256 for more detail.

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