These young, smiling women are students at Reitz High School on Evansville’s west side.
They are posing on the large “R” that has been embedded in the school’s famous hill for decades, at least since the 1940s, when this photo was captured. Reitz celebrated the centennial of its opening in 1918, when a rapidly growing population on the city’s “West End” prompted the construction of Evansville’s second high school.
Until then, Evansville High School (renamed Central High School after Reitz opened) was the only secondary school serving the area.
Several major expansions and renovations to Reitz have occurred over the decades, and today it is the city’s oldest high school still operating in its original location.