Class of 1928 - 11th Grade
High School only went up to 11th grade until 1944

1928 First Night Of Commencement

Very Large Audience Greets the Class of 1928 on Boy's Night of Commencement

Wednesday evening at 8:30 the large auditorium of the Girls' High school building was filled in the main body of the auditorium and the balcony with interested spectator, who were present on the occasion of the boys' night of commencement of the class of 1928.

The weather was delightful, the crowd was large and enthusiastic, and altogether the night was an exceedingly agreeable on to everybody present.

The comments of many, as they passed out, were to the effect that this was the best first night of commencement that the schools had ever had, and the past would justify the prediction that the last will always be the best.

The music, vocal and instrumental was received with great enthusiasm by the crowd, and the declamations of the boys were heard with great approval and applause.

The invocation was pronounced by the Rev. George T. Harmon of Trinity Methodist Church. This was followed by the High school band, that gave great pleasure to the audience whenever it played.

There was an exhibition drill in the Manual of Arms, lasting for a few moments under the command of Gram Hill. The participants selected from the whole Battalion were William Baldwin, Wesley Bradford, Perry Parrott, Ervin Shaw and Frank Strange.

The Levi medal, presented each year by Mr. Mitchell Levi for excellence in the Manual of Arms, was awarded to Ervin Shaw. This award was determined by a committee of military men who inspected the Battalion on several occasions.

Post WWI, many boys high schools emphasized military training. Ervin Bartow Shaw, Sr., class of 1928 winner/awardee of the prestigious Levy Medal for manual of arms competition (the Sumter, S. C. Boy's High School being the only high school in the USA using Springfield Rifles for that competition) was presented each year by Mr. Mitchell Levi. The awardee was determined each year by a committee of military men who inspected the Battalion on several occasions. The size of the medal is seen next to an ordinary lead pencil. As of 2016, this medal is in the possession of Dr. Ervin Shaw, Class of 1962, Ervin's son.

Each year the American Legion gives a medal to the members of the Battalion who does most to promote military matters in the high school by giving close attention to the drill and by creating on the part of the members of the Battalion the right attitude in all matters relating to military affairs in the school. Sidney Crumpton was adjudged as the boy who should receive the recognition, and the medal was awarded to him.

Dr. J. A. Mood, Chairman of the City Board of Education, presented the following medals:

Manliness, provided by Mr. Geo. L. Ricker, to Gram Hill.

The Garland, medal for athletics given by Mr. Cecil Wilson, to Fred Hook.

Outstanding service in the high school, given by Mr. and Mrs. John J. Riley, to Graham Hill.

Womanliness, given by Mr. J.B. Folsom, to Miss Margaret Holland.

Outstanding service in the high school, given by the American Legion Auxiliary, to Miss Christine DuBose.

Mr. Neill O'Donnell, for many years a member of the Board, presented to Miss Elizabeth Reed the O'Donnell medal for penmanship; and medals in stenography and typewriting to Misses Mary Barwick, Thelma Taylor, Bleka Cherry, and Margaret Drakeford. The I.C. Strauss prizes in spelling to Miss Grace Tucker and Herbert Brown.

Robert Welch has won the distinction of representing the high schools in the Winthrop College contest. In the series of trial thus far held Robert Welch has not yet missed a single word. He will doubtless give a good account of himself at Winthrop.

Dr. F.K. Hirsch, President of the Kiwanis Club, presented to Miss Catherine Walker a medal for girls athletics, a medal given by the Kiwanis Club of Sumter to the best athlete in the Girls High school.

Delightful music was interspersed throughout the program, and all of the comments on the music were enthusiastically favorable.

The following declamations were given:

Perry Haynsworth: Shall the Statue of Lee Stand in the Hall of Fame?

Graham Forshee: The Patriot and the Traitor.

Graham Hill: The Arrested Flight

William Baldwin was not in the contest for the Rhame medal, having won a medal in the district contest, and this medal will be awarded to him tonight.

The exercises tonight begin at 8:30 and a large crowd is expected.

Article appeared in the local Sumter newspaper

Provided by Dr. Ervin B. Shaw, Jr. '62