History of the Building

Edwin M. Stanton School has a long history as it was built in 1925. The School is named after Edwin M. Stanton, an American lawyer and politician who served as Secretary of War under the Lincoln Administration during most of the American Civil War. Stanton’s management helped organize the massive military resources of the North and guided the Union to victory.

After the Civil War, there were five public schools in the neighborhood. None of the original buildings remains. Edwin M. Stanton School was originally a grammar school for boys, that also housed a girls school in the same building. It was replaced in 1925 and is now the building seen today. The Stanton School is of historical importance because of the architect Irwin T. Catharine, as it resembles many other public schools built in the 1910s and 1920s, mostly following Catharine’s designs.

Between 1925 and 1939, the School Board erected five buildings using Type Number 146. The first three of these were triplets in every way: the Mary C. Wister School, the Edwin M. Stanton School, and the Lydia Darrah School. The Wister and Stanton schools, still retain most, if not all, of their original appearances. Stanton was built by the contractor, McCloskey & Company. Stanton was designed by Irwin T. Catharine in the Art Deco style, and reflects a marked break in architecture from the traditional forms, e.g., Georgian Revival and Collegiate Gothic, for schools and stresses modernity. It is identical to Darrah and Wister Schools. The Edwin M. Stanton school is a 3-story brick building set upon a raised basement. Rectangular in shape, it measures three registers upon its east and west elevations and ten along its north and south elevations. It consists of free-standing Greek Doric portico highlighted be colored tiles. The current building, stands tall on the corner of 17th and Christian Streets. Decorated with colorful paint and tile to represent its’ cultural arts program as well as its’ diverse population.

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History of the School

​In 2011 the School Reform Commission attempted to close Stanton School despite strong protests from parents, faculty, students, and the surrounding community. Led by the Supporters of Stanton, these stakeholders successfully lobbied the SRC to abandon its closure plans in 2012.