Workers from Dublin Construction Company carefully removing the concrete sign of the old Dublin High School (1952-1970). Ben Hall, the company's president and graduate of Dublin High School, came up with the idea to remove the sign and the columns and move them to the site of the new Dublin High School, estimated to be complete in the spring of 2010. Hall, at his own expense, plans to refurbish the stones into an attractive sign along the entrance way into the new high school. On behalf of the more than 10,000 students who attended the high school and the junior high (1970-2002), I say thank you!
Old DHS Marquee to Get a New Home
Columns, Sign to be Incorporated into New School
By JASON HALCOMBE
When Ben Hall walked out the doors of Dublin High School in 1961, he never forgot how those four years impacted his life.
Or what the campus, set on the corner of Moore and Calhoun streets, meant to thousands who crossed the main entrance during their middle or high school years.
So when the city made plans to raze the structure to expand local park grounds, Hall decided to try and save a portion for posterity.
And during the last week, Dublin Construction crews rose up in bucket trucks, carefully extracting the Dublin High School marquee, along with the Romanesque columns at the buildings main entrance, with plans of incorporating both into the new high school currently being built on Hillcrest Parkway.
“We’re trying to tie in the history of both the old Dublin High and Oconee High schools,” Hall said.
The idea crossed Hall’s mind nearly two years ago, when he was working on completing the DHS field house located beside Shamrock Bowl.
A conversation with then BOE chairman Bobby Willis about the field house shifted toward history and preservation, which gave Hall the idea of building display cases for both high schools, who officially merged in 1970 with the opening of the current facility.
“And that has evolved into trying to save the old marquee,” Hall said.
The Marquee, erected atop the structure in the 1950s, was the centerpiece of a building that has been a part of the Dublin City Schools system for the better part of six decades.
Plans for the marquee, the columns and potential Oconee High memorabilia are still up in the air, but Hall said the current thinking would use the marquee and Oconee pieces as a low-resting monument to both schools’ past.
Along with Hall, the Dublin City Schools’ board is feverishly searching for Oconee memorabilia to be included as a monument at the sight of the new school.
“We don’t have any pieces of Oconee High School,” said Scott Thompson, board member and county historian. “We’re going to try and find a Trojan head and try to make a memorial to Oconee as well. We just don’t have any pieces to carry out there.”
“Again, we’re trying to keep the history of Dublin for the people of Laurens County,” Hall said. “We need people to recount Laurens County’s fond memories. And continue to support them (and the schools) as they get older.”