DELHI (WBNG) — Residents of Delhi will be celebrating a very special bicentennial throughout the coming year. The Delaware Academy has been a staple in the community and holds a special place in many people’s hearts.
On April 12th, 1819, the Delaware Academy was first founded in Delhi. Exactly 200 years later, classes were wrapping up as students and staff prepared for spring break. Thinking back on the historical events during that time is mind-boggling.
“A long history. There’s so many things when you think about 200 years. From Civil War time, to the Titanic going down, It’s been here a long time. World War I, World War II,” said Delaware Academy Superintendent Jason D. Thomson.
The school was always there, even to mark these events, such as when the bell atop the school rang for 24 hours to signal the end of World War I.
Of course, the academy hasn’t stayed in the same location, having been moved three times through its history. This latest building was constructed in 1939, and those who have been involved for years have seen some of the changes over it’s history.
“I moved, walked from this building to the elementary school. I’ve seen the expansion of the elementary school shortly after I started working here. The building of the new gym that is the Ed Shockey Gym,” said Student Records CIO June Barriger.
Though the buildings themselves may change, the major constant everyone remembers are the people and community that make the school what it is.
“It’s the kids, it’s the people, it’s the community. You know you’re supported top to bottom. You can call your board members any time to discuss anything. You can call your superintendent any time. You know they’re there,” said 8th Grade English teacher Nancy Sikes.
“Understanding that this is an area where everyone was going to know each other and get to know each other and support each other. That was different from what I was used to but it was a really nice change to experience,” said Jasper Koota.
The seniors graduating this May will get to take part in some of the celebrations, but the school will continue celebrating the bicentennial throughout the rest of the year for one important reason. The Class of 2020 will officially be the 200th graduating class in the academy’s history next May, making the need for a continued celebration.
Either way, tradition and history will be celebrated by all as this historic institution continues to be a major part of the Delhi community for many more years to come.