100 years of Cleveland celebrated in new book


A new book captures the glorious history of our beloved school. Cover photo provided by the Cleveland Alumni Association.

By Ashley Lytle, Reporter

More than 200 pages of pure Cleveland High School history put together by Cleveland alumni in celebration of Cleveland’s 100th year, all dedicated to the one and only Jan Watt. The book, entitled, “Commerce-Cleveland High School 1926-2016 Centennial Edition,” is available to purchase online and will be officially published by mid-December of 2015.

Are you at all curious as to the time when the Oregonian wrote, “Let a public holiday be declared at Commerce High School today,” after our football team won a game? Or maybe you’re curious as to when in history it was common for students of Commerce to be getting married? If none of those catch your interest then maybe you just want to see a century of photos and history unfold before your eyes, all leading up to now, when we are celebrating 100 years of graduating classes.

Authors of this thoroughly researched book are alumni Nancy VanWinkle Beaver, Nancy Goldback Carr, and Dennis Maloney, although several alumni contributed information for the creation of this book that’s been a century in the making.

It’s full of photos and stories from Cleveland’s past newspapers, yearbooks, alumni, and even Oregonian articles from the Oregon Historical Society.

It will be available in eBook, hardcover, and soft back to buy both online as well as it will be available for purchase in the Cleveland Mall located in the Cleveland cafeteria.

The hardback is $75 and the paperback version is priced at $55. If those are a little steep for you, there’s always the eBook option available for $20.

You can now order the book online in all the different formats. And though the price is a bit steep, can you really put a price on the century of history that can be discovered and lived within the pages of this one-of-a-kind book?

The book has been split up into several different parts. There are the usual sections: about the book, acknowledgements, and table of contents, but then you’ll be pulled through history starting with a reflection by Jan Watt, in charge of Cleveland’s special projects, who has been at Cleveland for 47 out of its 100 years.

After that, the book will take you through the early years from Cleveland’s beginning when it was still called Commerce in 1916 to 1940.

Then the book will take you through the 1940s. Next you’ll get to learn about the transition from the Clinton Kelly High School of Commerce to what we are now known as today, Grover Cleveland High School.

You’ll then be taken through history from the 1950s to the 1990s in 10 year increments, and finally our most recent years 2000 to 2015. Through photographs and stories you’ll be able to get an idea of what was happening in the world as well as the community being built at our beloved school.

Next up in this unique book, there’s a two-page section for Paul Cook, the principal of Cleveland starting in 2002 until he retired last year in 2015. Included in these two pages is a letter from the man himself where he talks about some of what was accomplished in his 13 years as well as thanking the alumni board for all their help.

The final sections of the book covers Cleveland’s distinguished alumni, Rose Festival royalty, student body presidents, the Mel Krause athletic hall of fame, and Cleveland’s yearbooks.

This book is full of hidden treasures for everyone. You’ll enjoy the chance to go back in time and see what students and staff alike experienced both in school and outside over the last 100 years.