Harvey H Lowrey H.S.

 The School Mascot -- the Polar Bear and the Lowrey "L"

The polar bear was adopted as the official mascot for the high school in 1946. It was formerly the mascot for the Junior High. The polar bear statue, which stood in the second floor main hall, was a project of the Works Project Administration (W.P.A.) during the depression. It was a part of the government’s effort to create jobs for artists who were out of work. When it was completed, it was donated to the school by the government. For quite a few years, the statue stood in the study hall, but was then moved to a corner of the main hall by the stairs. In April of 1961, it was moved to the middle of the main hall so that every Lowrey student could see it easily.
Depicted in the tile on the 2nd floor next to the Polar Bear is an “L”. Tradition was that no one should walk on the “L”.  

Senior Fountain

The Senior Fountain was installed May 29, 1963. It is located in the Main Hall of the top floor of Lowrey under the bulletin board. The money for the fountain was donated by the classes of ’62 and ’63. The fountain was to be used by Seniors, only. Anyone else caught drinking from it paid the penalty!
Harvey H. Lowrey High School History
The Lowrey School has served its community since in 1927 and was built to relieve overcrowding at Thayer and Miller Schools. The 1920's saw a large growth in the Springwells Township Unit School District with the coming of Ford Motor Company's, Rouge Plant. As the number of students increased, the area's school system had to adjust.
Designed by H.J. Keough, the architect who also designed Fordson High School, used a Gothic Collegiate style, and made the building large enough to accommodate grades kindergarten through 9th. The school also housed a complete library, cafeteria, and fully equipped orthopedic department, which was designed for all students including the handicapped. Additions were made in 1949, and the school was incorporated into a High School as well as its Elementary and Junior High. From 1949 to 1969, the school was used for all three grade levels, however, today it is used only for grades kindergarten through 9th.

Harvey H. Lowrey was hired as Superintendent of the SpringwellsTownshipSchool District in February 1922, and served in that capacity until his retirement in 1946. He was also a teacher for over 50 years, having started that career in 1896 at Berlin Center, near Ionia, Michigan. He also served as principal of Saranac High School, Superintendent of Pewamo High School and Commissioner of the Ionia County Schools. Lowrey then became Registar and a teacher at Mt Pleasant Normal College (now Central Michigan University). He resigned to complete his doctral degree at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. In 1922, he came to the Springwells School District as Superintendent. Here he served on the Charter Commission in 1924 and again in 1942. He retired and left the Dearborn area, and passed away in 1961 at the age of 82.

School History as Reported in The Lowrey Light

 Issue: March 9, 1965
   The clouds of war swooped over the nation and America’s young men marched off to fight for their country. As the war progressed, those on the home front sacrificed their own wants and pleasures so that the boys “over there” could have it a little easier.
   At Lowrey also there was sacrificing. Miss Julia LaMarca, head of the English Department, made these statements: “When the war was going on, everyone bought war stamps and contributed to frequent clothing and paper drives. Many of the teachers and students worked part time to help the war effort.”
   Miss LaMarca went on to say this about students’ attitudes: “Students worked hard without being asked. Extra work was initiated by them. In fact, they worked so hard that the student program included an activity hour to teach them how to play.”
   Amidst the cries of victory, Lowrey switched from its wartime atmosphere to an air of post-war peace. To accommodate the ever increasing population, Lowrey added a high school. Thus, it became unique in Dearborn, containing an elementary school, junior high, and a senior high as well as a special education department. This prompted Miss LaMarca to say, “All a student has to do is get born. Lowrey School takes over from there.”
   In 1949, Lowrey’s sportsmen entered the Twin Valley Conference, which at that time included teams from Dearborn High, Lincoln Park and River Rouge, among others. With the exception of River Rouge, the others dropped out and such teams as Hamtramck, Willow Run and Romulus joined. Mr. Ernest McBride, basketball and baseball coach at that time, commented by saying, “there is not as much interest in high school sports now as there was during the early fifties. The boys had to hitchhike home from practice to places as far away as Garden City and Taylor. I think this decline in interest is mainly because of more varied activities in school, and especially outside the classroom.”
   Through the years, Lowrey’s Polar Bears have acquired a number of trophies. In 1952 they were TVL Class B Champs in basketball. The same year, Lowrey won the baseball tournament, as they did in ’49, ’56, ’58, and ’59. The Netters managed to win tennis trophies in ’56, ’57, and ’58. The track and swimming teams added, between them, three awards in 1957.
Issue: March 19, 1965
   In January of 1946, Mr. Dorman Ardis became principal and remained in this position until September of 1950 when Mr. Merwin Lewis took over. It was during Mr. Lewis’ years as principal that the suburban student sending districts changed. This was brought about by the building of high schools in many of the districts. Therefore, the remaining districts without sufficient room or without high schools altogether began sending their students to Lowrey.
   In January of 1961, Mr. John P. Romanow took over the reins as principal of Lowrey. In his four and one-half years as head administrator many changes came about.
   The entire building was renovated in 1962 to modernize and improve the appearance of Lowrey. A few of these changes are the gymnasium where a new floor was put in, the swimming pool and a diving board and new tile installed, the cafeteria with a complete remodeling and the shops where new equipment were put in. New physics and chemistry rooms were added in the basement which had previously been storerooms.
   But changes in Lowrey’s physical structure were not the only ones made. There were also changes in the Special Education Department. Two oral deaf classes were dropped in 1960 and a Special Ed. Nursery was dropped in 1964. In past years, the Special Ed. Students from elementary to high school were in classes with other students at Lowrey.
Issue: April 2, 1965
   The past three years have been very eventful in the history of Lowrey. Many changes have taken place in the staff, student body, and appearance of the building. In this issue we will discuss a few changes.
   In February of 1963, Mrs. Kaufman left the counseling staff at Lowrey to take a job at the University of Michigan Dearborn center. She was replaced by Mr. Kraai who also became sponsor of the class of ’65. Mr. Boatwright became assistant principal in March of 1964 after Mr. Dzovigian, the former assistant principal took a job at Haig Elementary School in January, 1964.
   Many new teachers have now been added to the Lowrey staff and many have departed. Mr. Wonders, a typing teacher, died in 1962, and Mrs. Weaver, a shorthand teacher, died in 1963. Mr. Gray and Mr. Howser retired in 1963.
   In 1963 Lowrey changed leagues from the Twin Valley League into the new Tri-River League. This move proved to be a wise one for the first year because the football team tied for the championship. The change in leagues also created a greater competitive spirit at Lowrey because of the rivalry between Lowrey and Riverside in Dearborn Heights.
   Mid-year graduation was eliminated. The last one being in 1963. The student body now graduates in June, only. The plan now is to have full year courses instead of semester courses. This has not been worked out fully yet but first steps have been taken.
   This year Lowrey became exclusively a District 7 high school. The 1964 graduating was the last to include District 2 students. The Junior Prom, an annual event at Lowrey, was discontinued in 1963 because of the lack of interest and attendance. A new tradition was begun in 1963, that of the Senior Fountain. This fountain, located in the second floor lobby, is for the exclusive use of seniors, and anyone else caught drinking from it pays the penalty. Another new idea, started last year, is the morning donut sale. Students were given assigned busses starting in 1965 because of student misconduct. This was a bad day in the history of Lowrey.
   The history of Lowrey does not end here, nor will it end when this building no longer stands. It will continue as long as there is an ex-Lowrey student who contributes to his society and can look back and say that he learned much from attending Lowrey High School.