The History of Emden High School
Emden (population 515) is located in south-central Illinois. Emden was platted in 1871 in northwestern
Logan County, about 12 miles northwest of Lincoln. The town was named after a town in Germany by its founders Teis
Smid and William Smith. Emden is located just south of U.S. Route 136 and just west of Interstate Highway 155. The
Illinois Central Gulf Railroad runs at a northwestern angle through town. The Prairie Creek surrounds the town on
It is thought that Emden provided education for its children as far back as the late 1800s. One
thing is for sure, Emden was one of the smallest high schools in the state! Along with the likes of Rollo High School,
which is also on this site, it was reported that in 1931 Emden High School had a total enrollment of 10 students!
Just imagine the stories and student life in a setting such as this! With a small enrollment base such as theirs, Emden
High School served the community for about 5 decades. It was in the mid-1940s that the town of Emden began consolidation
talks with its neighbor to the southeast, Hartsburg. These talks became a reality after the 1947 school year. Hartsburg-Emden
School District was established in 1947.
The following historical information was provided by an anonymous fan:
"The school pictured above is Emden Grade School -- still in use! The Emden Community House was used for a 3 year High School for many years! During
the school year the basketbal gym was used as the study hall and classroom. During the basketball
season a heavy basketball goal was lowered from the stage to the side of the gym floor each
Wednesdays and Fridays. This enabled movies to be projected on a screen that was set up on the gym stage. All
thru the school year the classroom desks and chair had to be moved to the side on Wednesday and Friday afternoons. This work was done by the students!
Noted graduates include Darrell Klink a distinguished Lincoln Attorney, Thomas
E. Komnick a highly successful business,and investmant man, and Dean
B. Rademaker; founder of the 50 and DC Marathon Group USA!"
The high school for the Hartsburg-Emden School District was located in Hartsburg. The grade school (pictured
above) was located in Emden. It is quite possible that the building pictured above also served as Emden High School at
one time. If you have this information please write to us.
Emden High School Quick Facts
Total enrollment in 1931: 10
School building today: Hartsburg-Emden Grade School
Red, Blue, & White
School Fight Song: unavailable