HISTORY OF ZEPHYRHILLS HIGH SCHOOL

Highlights of 1947

Richard Rosenvold, Fred LeHeup, James Burley, Fred Gore


Researchers Note:

In the microfilm of the Zephyrhills Library and Dade City Banner, accounts of the specific graduation of 1947 and verification of the Valedictorian and Salutatorian are not found. An article however in the “Highlights of 1948” which discusses the appointment of a new principal to ZHS, Leon Luckenbach—there is acknowledgement that his secretary is a recent valedictorian, Mrs. Patricia Wells. I did locate one member of the class era, Mr. Emerson Arnot, and he verified by phone that the valedictorian of the class of 1947 was Patricia Parttridg, who married Roy Wesley Wells prior to graduation in January 1947. Recollection of salutatorian’s identity is yet to be verified by any source.



High School Music Recital A Success, Zephyrhills News, May 30, 1947

A fine program of vocal and instrumental music was given at the local high school auditorium last Friday evening by the students of the high school Music Department under the direction of Miss Hoffman, Supervisor. Frank Hanson, President of the Glee Club, acted as Master of Ceremonies and introduced the other members of the organization in duets, solos and ensemble numbers.

The setting for the recital was a lovely garden scene complete with lighted fountain, trees, and flowers, garden furniture so graciously tendered by Mrs. Herring and Mr. Cunningham.

Three Junior High School students appeared on the program also. Miss Jean McGavern played a piano solo and Barbara Sabin, a violin solo accompanied by Martha Mae Keller. Margaret Hill favored the audience with a piano solo.
George Gentzel played a lovely saxophone solo accompanied by Miss Betty Jo Turner.

The highlight of the evening was Mrs. E.C. Mann, who appeared in a group of piano solos. Mrs. Mann was presented with an arm bouquet by the Glee Club in appreciation of her help in making the program a success. Members of the Glee Club and friends enjoyed a reception after the musicale at the Wolverine Gardens. Officers of the Glee Club are: Frank Hanson, President; Estella Grams, Vice President; Norma Gregory, Secretary-Treasurer; and Librarian, Jane Kerr.


Baccalaureate Service at Methodist Church, Zephyrhills News, May 28, 1947

On Sunday evening, May 25, at 8 o’clock the service will be in honor of the Graduating Class of 1947.
Reverend Frank Hartman has been invited to preach the sermon. Reverend Jerrett and Reverend Mathis will assist in the service. The school glee club will furnish special music. Tuesday evening, May 27 at 8:30 is Class Night in the School Auditorium.

Graduation exercises will be held Thursday evening, May 29 at 8:30 in the school auditorium.

Reverend Sidney White, former Zephyrhills teacher, who is at present pastor of Methodist Church in Davenport, will be the guest speaker.

Relatives and friends of the Senior Class are urged to attend these exercises. The Class Roll follows:

Bonnie Lou Arnold, Emerson David Arnot Jr., John McElwain Arnot, June Clarice Arnot, Elizabeth Patricia Bolden, James Holmes Boatwright, Joan Carter, Lois Martina Clardy, Ralph Lamar Chancey, John Therman Clardy, Laura L. Gallagher, Estella A. Grams, Frank Roy Heath, Cora Etta Jones, Theodore Franklin Mayor, Paul Eugene Miller, Catherine Marie Nevins, Patricia Pauline Parttridg, Mary Eloise Pollock, Cornelia Jane Thomson, William James Peterson, George Clarence Kemp.


Huge Crowd at Open House, Zephyrhills News, May 23, 1947

Parents and friends turned out en masse to view the work of the local school children and be entertained by them for the evening last Thursday, May 15.

Each grade was represented with displays of art, penmanship, English, spelling and other interesting subjects while the hobby and floral arrangement displays were representative of all classes.

To make the event more interesting, local merchants offered prizes for the evening and following won awards:
First Grade Art, Barbara Peeples, Mrs Hamilton, teacher; Second Grade Art: Louis King, Mrs. Austin, teacher; Second Grade Art: Lenore Lincoln, Mrs. Lee, teacher; Third Grade Art: James Jones, Miss Rawlinson, teacher; Third Grade Art: Stanley Grame and Voncel Clardy, Mrs. Hart, teacher; Fourth Grade Art: Robert Frost, Mrs. Melius and Mrs. Satterly, the teachers.

Fifth Grade Art: Helen Wells, Mrs. Turner, teacher; Fifth grade art: Pam Levine, Mrs. Feodoe, the teacher; Sixth Grade Art: Patty Smith, Miss Hodges, teacher; Sixth Grade Art: Ronald McCoy, Miss Fedor, teacher; Seventh Grade Art: Billy McIntosh and Jean Hamby, Mrs. Ellmaker and Miss Kruzen, teachers; Eight Grade Art: Mary Ann Vestal, Mr. Joiner and Mr. Stenson, teachers.

High School Art: first prize to Virginia Wassner; Second Prize, Hobby Displays: Beverly Ann Bolt: First Prize to Mary Kate Witt with her cleverly arranged stamp collection and Second Prize to Floyd Cherry and Eugene Hampton, whose entry was a clever molded farm scene. Third Prize: Dorothy Austin, with her homemade doll house and furniture. A special prize for Handcraft was won by John Arnot for his excellent display of hand made lamps. Judges were Mrs. Jarrett, Art; Mrs. Mann, Floral Decorations; Mr. Wells, local scoutmaster, Hobby Judge.

An excellent program of vocal and instrumental numbers was presented under the direction of Miss Hoffman, Music supervisor. Appearing on the program were the Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Grade choruses, groups from Grades One and Two and a lovely vocal solo by little Miss Kitty Doyle of the Third Grade. Nell Locke, George Neukom, Phyllis Geiger and Margaret Hill appeared in instrumental selections.

Principal C. Cliff Bailey and the entire staff of teachers are most grateful for the fine cooperation of the merchants for making the event a success and wish to thank the following who donated prizes: Bill Pracher’s Service Station, Neukom’s Drug Store, Rosenvold’s Cottage Lunch, Florida Power Corporation—Mr. Burley, Manager; Friemarks’ 5 & 10 Store, Skinner’s Drugs, Peni-Saver Store—Mr. Blackburn, owner; Beautty Cunningham Furniture; Hart Insurance Company; Slater Insurance Company, The Waymon’s Studio; Moody Hardward, Peeple’s Grocery; Kaylor Hardware; Hotel Zephyr—Andrew J. Flatt, Manager; Elizabeth’s Beauty Shop, Lair Department Store, Mrs. Rose Chenkins, Leroy Lincoln, Mayor Parsons. –C.C. Bailey and Zephyrhills News.


To the Editor—A Job Well Done For Zephyrhills, Zephyrhills News, May 19, 1947

The serving of lunch, Wednesday at the school lunch room has marked the closing of the concession for the year. Hundreds of children received, there, hot lunch and necessary food. A great many of the meals served were given gratis because the individuals could not afford to pay for it.  

…One day a man came to the general assembly program before the whole school and pledged that he would see that as long as he was around he would see that each child had a hot lunch, a bottle of milk and those well deserving ones, a free lunch.

It was only the determination of the gentleman that kept the lunchroom open during the critical time. He set about cutting expenses to a minimum so that the few funds could be used for food entirely. He operated in such a way that students help further cut costs.

Zephyrhills students can be grateful and proud of Principal C.C. Bailey who kept his pledge to them.

The lunchroom problem was not the only one he successfully solved during his stay with the local schools. Mr. Bailey fell heir to a particular discipline problem when he came to take over the principalship of the school. His success in this matter can best be measured by a visit to our school and a general casting about for any display of unruliness. During the year, the local school system has been visited by any number of state and county officials and has consistently received the most favorable comment in every respect. Certainly a good deal of the credit can be claimed by the administration of the office of Principal and rightly so….-Ruth Hoffman


Norma Gregory Selected For Girls State, Zephyrhills News, May 16, 1947

Norma Gregory, 11th Grade high school student, was selected as the Zephyrhills representative to attend Girls State, which is being sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary and will be held in Tallahassee, July 14-19.


Junior-Senior Banquet and Prom, the Zephyrhills News, May 2, 1947

The Annual Banquet given by the Juniors in honor of the graduating class was held last Thursday evening at the Wolverine Motorette.

Freddie Gore said grace and then Fred LeHeup proposed a toast which was responded to by Emerson Arnot, Vice President of the Senior Class. A delicious supper of fried chicken, green peas, French fried potatoes, coconut pie and ice cream was enjoyed by all.

There was a short entertainment after supper when Frank Hansen sang, “Red Sails in the Sunset” and “Good Night, Sweetheart.” Jayne Kerr also played piano selections.

Guests at the banquet were: Mr. and Mrs. Vincent McGuire, Mr. and Mrs. C.C. Bailey and Miss Matilda Clements.

The Juniors and Seniors and their guests then went to the Woman’s Club for the Prom. The hall was attractively decorated and Patricia Thompson and Mary Louise Allen served as hat check girls; Billy Douglas and Johnny Bryant served as doormen. Johnnie Mandese provided excellent music and everyone certainly had a wonderful time, thanks to the Juniors.


433 Students Enrolled This Year At Zephyrhills, Zephyrhills News, September 12, 1947

On registration day, September 5th, the enrollment of the Zephyrhills school was 433 students.

The following teachers have been appointed for the 1947-48 school year: Mrs. Helen Hamilton, Mrs. Mary H. Lee, Mrs. Clyde Adams, Mrs. Mabel Campbell, Mrs. Willie Mae Ellmaker, Mrs. Edith Mellius, Mrs. Modesta Hart, Mrs. Hazel B. Setterlee, Miss Ruth Hoffman, Mr. C.V. Matthews, Mrs. Mack H. Matthews, Mrs. Malcom Goforth, Miss Matilda Clements, Mrs. S.W. Cross, Mrs. Alice Atwater, Mrs. Celia Anderson, Mrs. Alpha Gill, Mr. Louis C. Cappola, Mrs. Collins, teacher of vocational agriculture in both Zephyrhills and Dade City and Zephyrhills schools and Leon R. Luckenbach, principal.

Mrs. Patricia Partriddg Wells, former valedictorian of the school, is serving as secretary to the principal. Mr. John Daniels has again accepted the janitorial position. The lunchroom is being operated under the able direction of Mrs. Marie Spencer.
The children registering in the first grade are admitted if they have reached the age of five years and eight months by September 1. At present the airport classrooms are being occupied by the fourth grade and fifth-sixth grade. It is hoped that the new school building will be completed soon so that all grades may be located in the main school area.

School begins at 8:30 and dismisses at 3:30. Primary grades are dismissed at 2:30


The Luckenbachs, Zephyrhills News, October 17, 1947

Mary Alyce Smith, who is now Mrs. Leon Rodney Luckenbach, and who recently returned to Florida with her husband, Principal Luckenbach, of Zephyrhills schools is no stranger in Florida or in Pasco County.

Mrs. Luckenbach was born in Dade City and her father, Reverend Smith, died in ministerial service at the Baptist Church there 23 years ago. Her mother still resides in Dade City.

The Luckenbachs came here several months ago from College Park, MD, where Mr. Luckenbach was a faculty member at the University of Maryland. He was a member of the faculty at Dade city High 10 years ago. Mr. and Mrs. Luckenbach have two children; 9-year-old Rodney and 3-year-old Laura. Mr. Luckenbach served in World War I for 4 ½ years as a First Lieutenant in the Infantry and Coast Artillery. The Luckenbachs are Baptist and live on West 6th Street. They will soon move to their new home near the high school.


Principal Bailey Asks Teachers To Register, Zephyrhills News, March 14, 1947

With the enrollment in the local Public School increasing daily, it has become necessary to divide classes and employ additional teacher. Consequently, the local supply of instructors are at present on the job here or elsewhere.   Principal Bailey finds it imperative to appeal for all teachers in the vicinity of Zephyrhills to kindly register at his office before March 18. Daily vacancies are bound to occur in a teaching staff of 25 or more, and often Mr. Bailey is confronted with the lack of adequate substitutes. Mr. Bailey will be happy to meet and discuss with all applicants, the possibilities of helping in this emergency. Seven new teachers have been added to the local staff since the last of 1946 and with the entrance of new pupils daily the outlook demands additional members.


Schools Observe Field Day, Zephyrhills News, March 21, 1947

Mr. C.C. Bailey, Principal of the local school, announces plans are under way and preparations being made to observe and participate in the first annual observance of Pasco County Field Day to be held at Dade city, May 2. Zephyrhills will compete with other schools of the county for prizes and ribbons for Penmanship, Spelling, Arithmetic, Essay, Declamation and Oration, Vocal and Instrumental music and Fine and Manual Arts. An athletic or track meet will afford completion in the 100 and 200 yard dash, high jump, broad jump and softball.

Every school is being invited to display the work of the school and booths will be furnished for the exhibitions. Supervisor Whitten of Dade City, announces competent judges will be on hand and that medals and trophies are now being prepared to recognize Excellency in each division.


What is Meant by “The Curriculum of High School?” Dade City Banner, May 23, 1947

One of a series of articles by Burch Cornelius


The school curriculum consists of all the children’s experiences for which the school assumes responsibility. Two major aspects of the organization of an instructional program at the secondary level are discernible: a) a program of general education in which emphasis is primarily concerned with individual and group participation in a democracy; b) a program of special education which flows out of and is definitely related to general education but which takes care of some of the more differentiated needs of the individual as a member of a democratic society.

General education refers to a type of curriculum organization and method which sets about to assist the pupils to obtain those experiences which will enable them to solve in a share adequate manner problems of everyday living. The materials used will certainly include accounts of the past as well as the present experiences and problems of the race. However teachers and pupils will be concerned more with intelligent appraisal of the adequacy of past solutions than in insisting upon the blind following of fixed patterns of action.  Moreover, heath, physical education, music and art will be regarded as a necessary part of every child’s experience for everyday living in a democratic society.

As stated above general education is concerned with that portion of the curriculum in which the needs common to all boys and girls are included. The State Department of Education has selected the following as general education and require them of all the boys and girls: 3 units of English, 3 units of social studies (one of which must be American History and Government), 1 unit of mathematics, 1 unit of health-science, 1 unit of home economics for girls, 1 unit of physical science for boys and 4 years of physical education.

The portion of the school day devoted to general education furnishes rich opportunities for the discovery of special talents and interests. When a pupil reaches the point where intensive work in a special subject takes on significance for him, and when he has seen the relationship of this area of work to his own needs and to those of society, and when he has the broad background necessary for successful and profitable work in this line of endeavor, he is ready to begin special education. This means that advanced or specialized courses in mathematics, science, foreign languages, literature, agriculture or other special interest subjects should be made available to those persons who will profit from them individually and socially. Where opportunity is afforded pupils to gain experiences along a particular line in that part of the curriculum designated as general, further work in such an area when it is included among the special subjects should be placed upon the basis of reasonable mastery.


1947 ZHS Football team


Happy Memories Abound As ZHS Alumni Enjoy Reunion, Zephyrhills News, July 2, 1981, by Jaynell LeHeup

….Mrs. Lois Clardy Tyson, 1947, who came from her home in Las Cruces, New Mexico, was the winner of the prize for coming the greatest distance. Mrs. Tyson was with her sisters, Sarah and Norma Nell and their brothers, Ashley, Thurman and Bobby. Bobby’s wife and daughter, Buena and Linda and Norma Nell’s husband, Sam, were with the family…..


10th Annual Alumni and Friends Biggest and Best Ever, Zephyrhills News, June 26, 1979 by Jaynell LeHeup

Hopes for the biggest and best became a reality Sunday for the 10th annual Zephyrhills High School Alumni and Friends Reunion.

At 1 p.m. the group’s President H.D. Pollock, Class of 1935 gave the welcome. Vice President Robert Booth, Class of 1946 and his committee of workers had everything ready for the buffet luncheon which was enjoyed after the invocation by Reverend Arthur Austin, Class of 1929.

New officers elected are Mrs. Laray Mott Jordan, class of 1946, President; John F. Clements, Vice President who has been a faculty member at ZHS since the 1948-49 school year; Mrs. Betty Jo Turner Hyder, Class of 1948, secretary; and Mrs. Sharon Forbes Nelson, Class of 1960, treasurer.  

The largest family group present this year was the family of eight children of J.F. Clardy and the late Mrs. Clardy of Zephyrhills.  The four brothers and four sisters were enjoying their first family reunion in 25 years. Most were accompanied by their wives, husbands, children and some by grandchildren. They were: Ashley Clardy, Class of 1939, Marietta, Georgia; Sarah Clardy, Class of 1938 and now Mrs. D.K. Lagasse of Keystone Heights; Thurman Clardy, Class of 1943, Daytona Beach; Normanelli Clardy, Class of 1946; Lois Clardy, Class of 1947 who is now Mrs. Zariel Tyson of Afghanistan; Robert Clardy, Class of 1950, Stone Mountain, Georgia; Jack Clardy, Class of 1952, St. Augustine; and Vonceil Clardy, Class of 1956, Charlotte, North Carolina.  


Zephyrhills School, Zephyrhills News, September 6, 1947

The popular and efficient principal, Leon R. Luckenbach, comes to us from the University of Maryland, where he was a professor of mathematics. He holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Florida. Mr. Luckenbach served in the Canadian Army Air Force and later in the American Army.

The Zephyrhills school is expanding, both in student membership and physical property. The total enrollment this year is 513 students. A new building ready in a few weeks, is increasing the number of classrooms by six.

The mainspring of any school is the faculty. From the twenty-two members of the school comes a wealth of experience and knowledge.  Three of the members have Master’s Degrees; one has its recognized equivalent; some are specialists in their field or endeavor; and all have a great deal of talent and ability. The staff consists of Principal Luckenbach and eleven specialized instructors in the Junior and Senior High Schools and ten teachers in the elementary grades.

The school lunchroom, under the capable direction of Mrs. Marie Spencer, furnishes a tasty and nourishing meal at low cost.

The Primary Grades-In the primary grades the reading assumes a place of major importance and improved practices in the teaching of reading are employed. College-trained, experienced teachers use up-to-date methods of instruction and seek to develop the whole child, mentally, physically, morally, socially, and emotionally. The individual child and his needs are considered along with the welfare of the group. Music, art and physical education round out the academic program of studies.

Due to the face that the Zephyrhills School is accredited through the Southern Accredited Association of Schools, it does and must, maintain the advanced and progressive program which is outlined by the Educational Authorities of the State of Florida.

To cope with the advanced and progressive program, the Intermediate Department of the school is staffed in the main, with teachers who are college graduates and who have had experience.

An important phase, probably a most important one, is the unified course of study which links the Primary and Intermediate departments placing emphasis on the teaching of the Language Arts. Each teacher familiarizes herself with the work in the preceding and following grades.

Junior and Senior High School-Zephyrhills is very proud that its school is a member of the Southern Association of Accredited Schools and Colleges. This is of great value to our graduates who plan to enter schools or higher learning. In addition to regular academic courses, our school offers training in Vocational Agriculture, Home Economics, music, Library Science, and Physical Education.

Athletics-The Zephyrhills High football team is on the march. Due to the small squad it is necessary to use many inexperienced boys in key positions. That is a handicap to the team as well as the boys. However, each one plays the game to the hilt. As you have seen they never ask quarter nor give any. We can justly be proud of them for the manner in which they carry the high school colors. They are well coached and have the spirit it takes to win.

The school has secured the services of one of Florida’s best high school coaches. Coach Cappola knows the game. He knows the weak and strong points of his boys and has that knack of getting the best out of each man. He has instilled the proper spirit that carries a team to victory. He never loses an opportunity to build character and sportsmanship.

“Coach,” as we affectionately called him, served three years in the armed forces. After this service to the country he went to Auburn, took part in athletics there and was one of the school’s best men. After graduation he secured the position as head coach in the high school at Trenton. This year we are fortunate to have him in that capacity of head coach.

Program of Guidance-The schools of today are accepting the responsibility of pupil guidance. In recognition of the growing need of boys and girls for a program of guidance, Mr. Luckenbach has made this program an integral part of the administration and curriculum of the school. In the elementary school the teachers are responsible for the guidance of the pupils of their own grades. In the high school this work is carried on chiefly in the homeroom periods, vocational classes, assembly programs, student government participation and in the various clubs. The guidance program of the Zephyrhills school aims to develop happy, well-adjusted, good citizens who can make useful contributions to our community, state, and nation in keeping with the ideals and principles of our democracy.

High School Activities-During recent years great emphasis has been placed on extra curricula activities in the school. The need for some such programs in the school to give the student an opportunity to express himself in some activity in which he has special interest and native ability has become very great.

Various clubs that have been approved by the faculty and will be under the direction of a well qualified faculty member include: Glee Club, Library, Dramatics, Citizenship, Athletics, Science, Newspaper, Home Economics, and Hobby.
The new annex was opened in 1947. Much was done by volunteer labor. The total reported in the 9/06/1947 news article was $9,433.78 and included $1,529 in blocks, $537. In cement, $682 in steel windows. Photos which follow include ZHS in 1947 and the new School Annex.



Dr. Emerson David Arnot, Jr. passed away December 27, 2007 at the Hernando Pasco Hospice in Dade City, Florida, Tampa Tribune, December 20, 2007.

He was born August 14, 1925, in Crystal Springs, Florida to Dr. Emerson Arnot Sr. and Louise Marie Dechambeau-Arnot. The family moved to Zephyrhills, Florida, the following year. He attended school in Zephyrhills through the 11th grade, and then enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served during World War II on the USS Aucilla AO-56. The Aucilla was involved in operations in both the Atlantic and Pacific. After the war, he was honorably discharged. He then returned to Zephyrhills to finish his senior year of high school and graduated with his brother and sister in the class of 1947. He attended the National College of Chiropractic in Chicago, Illinois, and graduated in 1950. He then went into practice with his father in Zephyrhills. He married Joan N. Johnson June 10, 1952. Emerson and Joan had two daughters, Suzanne Marie and Sheree? Louise. He practiced in Zephyrhills for 38 years. When he retired, the practice was carried on by his nephew, John M. Arnot. He was active in city affairs for many years. He was a volunteer fireman and a city councilman who spearheaded the reclamation of the much-neglected Zephyr Park in 1962. He then served as Mayor from 1964-1976. He was then reelected to the City Council in 1976, following a recall election. He is survived by his wife, Joan; two daughters, Suzanne Marie Morgan and her husband, Ray, of Crystal Springs and Sheree? Louise Newell and her husband, Michael, of Zephyrhills; his three grandchildren, Johanna Bonnie Theel, and her husband, Bobby, Jacob Edwin Newell and Tess Marie Newell, all of Zephyrhills, a great-grandson, R. Conway Theel; and his sister, June Eiland of Zephyrhills. He was preceded in death by his sisters, Louise VanAs and Annette Green and his brother, John E. Arnot.


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