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Abernethy History

Picture of School in the '50s The first records of the school which became Abernethy Elementary School are dated from 1869 and indicate that the school began in a portable building. The first school building (then called "Stephens School") was erected in 1877 on the block that is bounded by SE 7th and 8th Streets and SE Stephens and Harrison Avenues. The 1877 school was rebuilt in 1887 on the same site, but the building was destroyed by a fire only two years later in 1889. A new structure was erected on the same site in 1890.

In 1925 the school was rebuilt on a new site at SE 14th Avenue and Orange Street (its present location). At that same time, the school's name was also changed from "Stephens" to "Abernethy" to honor George Abernethy, the first provisional governor of Oregon.

In April 1926, the Oregonian reported that:

"Dedication ceremonies were conducted on April 26, 1926 by H.M. Sherwood, Principal, and attended by pupils and teachers of Abernethy School. A cornerstone was placed containing names of students and teachers attending Abernethy, along with a copy of the Oregonian history of the school and community, and a flag of the United States. The school has 24 classrooms and is located at the corner of Birch and Orange. The foundation was laid May 24, 1925, and the school was constructed at a cost of $270,000".

Abernethy is proud of its history. Several families at Abernethy have had two or more generations attend the school. We believe that our rich history gives the school a strong foundation on which to build a promising future.


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