Another historic high school graduation took place on May 28, 1958. It was the first graduation ceremony for Little Rock Hall High School.
The school opened in September 1957 as Little Rock’s newest high school, located in “west” Little Rock. (It is sometimes listed as the second Little Rock high school, ignoring the fact that Horace Mann and the Vo Tech high schools existed.)
The first graduating class was smaller than future classes would be. Because they had attended Central High School for their sophomore and junior years, many seniors who were zoned for Hall High chose to attend Central for their senior year.
Instead of processing in to Elgar’s “Pomp and Circumstance,” the Hall High seniors entered to Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Procession of the Nobles.” The music for ceremony also included “The Star Spangled Banner,” Scarmolin’s “My Creed” and Handel’s “Sarabande and Bouree.”
Principal Terrell E. Powell (who would be tapped as superintendent of the district in a few months) presided over the ceremonies. Superintendent Virgil Blossom (whose daughter had graduated from Central High the day before) spoke briefly to introduce the School Board members. One of them, R. A. Lile, presented the students with their diplomas.
There were 109 seniors listed in the graduation program, seven were honor graduates. The senior class officers were: Redding Stevenson, president; Amanda Jeanne “Toppy” Cameron, vice president; and Karl E. Stahlkopf, secretary. Porter Briggs was the first student body president. Linda Overstreet was student body vice president and Linda Neathery was 12th grade representative on the student council.
The Senior speakers were: Anita Kluglose (“Toward a Pathless Wood”), Karl Stahlkopf (“Toward the Mysterious Stars”), Linda Neathery (“Toward Majestic Mountains”) and Thomas York (“Toward Unlimited Horizons”). Other students participating were Redding Stevenson presenting the senior gift, Mary Ellen Lenggenhager giving the invocation, and Michael Ebert giving the benediction.