"If You Build It, They Will Come" by Emma Wise, former RHS student
In 1951, the people of Richwoods Township, part of a non-high school district of Peoria County, voted to build their own high school. Richwoods Township purchased the east half of Expo Gardens, including the stadium, for $150,000. Richwoods Community High School would be its own school district, until 1964 when the City of Peoria annexed the area and integrated the school into District 150.
When construction on the school began in 1956, only a small portion of what we know as Richwoods High School today was included as the building plans. The pool, the back gym, the chorus room, the 300 and the 400 hallways were all additions to the original structure.
The cornerstone, which can be seen to the left of Richwoods main entrance, was placed in August of 1957. A box containing the building plans, a school budget, a school handbook, newspaper clippings and other documents was placed inside the cornerstone.
1st Day of School
Photo Credit: First Day of School Excalibur 1958
Original School circa 1959
Photo Credit: Original RCHS Excalibur 1961
Article comes from the Exalibur, 1962.
Richwoods Community High School opened in 1957 with an enrollment of
1074 students, and today, 5 years later, we have grown to nearly 1700.
With each year's enrollment growing, the Knights soon outgrew the
original building, and a new wing was added in 1958 (Editor's note, this
is the 300 hallway and it ended at Room 309/409). Today as current
enrollment figures indicate our physical plant again needed to be
expanded. The members of the community recognized the necessity of
additional facilities and expansion; they, in 1961, endorsed and
approved a bond issue which will add to our physical plant to
accommodate an enrollment of 2300-2400 students.
300 Hallway Addition
Photo Credits: 300 Hall construction Excalibur 1961
Quick Facts: These fun facts are by Emma Wise, former RHS student.
The knight by the front office was a gift from the class of 1964 and was named Oscar by Mrs. Richardson, the 1964 class sponsor.
The first students voted on the school mascot, the school colors, and the name of the school newspaper and yearbook. According to Shield archives, the knight received 346 votes. The closest competitors were the Royals and the Rangers.
Photos of Richwoods Community High School