Ben Davis High School is named for Benjamin Davis, general superintendent of the Vandalia Railroad. He was instrumental in getting a railroad stop for a small community in Wayne Township. The first school was built on the corner of now High School Road in 1892, housing the grade school and the high school with 64 students and two teachers. That school building was replaced in the early 1900s by a larger one at the corner of what is now Morris Street and High School Road. In 1922, Ben Davis become the first consolidated high school in Indiana.
During the late 1930s, a larger school was built as part of the Works Progress Administration and remained in that location until 1965 when the current school building was constructed. The school underwent extensive construction and renovation from 1998 to 2002 and experienced another addition of more classrooms in 2006. The old Ben Davis Junior High School was renovated and now serves as Ben Davis University High School.
Notable Ben Davis alumni include Don Gummer, sculptor; Kevin Lee, NBC sports broadcaster; Shyra Ely of the Indiana Fever; David Calabro, WTHR sports broadcaster; Steve Allee, musician and composer; and Lauren Cheney, Olympic gold medalist in soccer.
The Indianapolis Public Library and its digitization partner, IUPUI University Library, are happy to present this digital collection of Ben Davis High School materials from the Indianapolis Special Collections Room of the Indianapolis Public Library published here with the generous funding of The Library Fund, a fund of The Indianapolis Foundation.