Friday, February 6, 2015

Old School's Walls Come Down

The walls of the old Sallisaw High School came down Friday morning, for the safety of the public. Concerned about the safety of the remaining walls of the structure, after the old school was mostly destroyed in an arson fire in 2004, city officials called for an inspection of the walls last year, and engineers said the walls were not safe and could possibly collapse, That led the city commission to approve having the walls removed. The rotunda and two small wing walls on the rotunda's sides will remain, City Manager Bill Baker said. Workers were bulldozing the building materials into a pile behind the rotunda,and work at the site was expected to continue throughout Friday. Baker said the old school has many memories for Sallisaw residents and graduates. For that reason the city is inviting anyone interested to pick up a brick or two as memorabilia. That may begin next week, after work on the site is complete. "We're asking people to just take one or two bricks, not a whole load. That would not be fair. No contractors please. Leave the bricks for others. We're using the honor system here," Baker said. The school was closed in 1987, after the new Sallisaw High School was built. A group of Sallisaw residents raised funds and tried to save the old building as a museum and meeting place for the public, but the 2004 fire destroyed those plans also.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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