Talking Walls

submitted by Emma Groppel

One of the things to come out of my photos on the tour were the signs and messages on the walls of the school buildings.  The teachers and administrators are very smart people to put positive messages out there for the students every day.  Shaping their mental outcome of their school career in a positive way!


Included here in this slide show are messages about a particular instructor that significantly influenced my life at Alton High School.  My activities in high school centered around the Music and Theater Departments.  For me it was a way of life.  A way to express myself and to do something positive with my energy.


The instructor was Mr. Clifford Davenport.  He was in charge of the Theater classes at AHS during our times at AHS.  He fought for our program amidst all the pressure for athletics and other programs competing for precious school budget resources. 


Some battles took many years to win.  He won for all of us when he was able to get sound proofing materials installed in the auditorium. 


I remember the auditorium without the sound proofing.  It was a huge struggle to be understood in there without the sound proofing.    Mr. Davenport cared about the school and he cared about the theater program.  He and Mr. Glenn Waters worked diligently to provide a positive environment for students to learn about the theater and performing arts, and to experience them and to actually do them. 


They had a Thespian Troupe whereby students would earn points for working on shows and be able to have a fully rounded experience of the theater arts.  I do not remember the scale for the point system; but, they were not just handed to you.  You might get one point if you sold tickets on a show another if you ushered for a show.  If you earned 50 points you were considered an Honor Thespian.  It usually took more than one show and more than one year to earn your 50 points.


We did not have letters like the folks did for Athletics; but, we had cast parties after the shows and one heck of a lot of fun producing a show.  All the while learning the craft and theater arts.  I would do it all again in a heartbeat!  If anyone has a story about their thespian experiences please email them to me and I will put them up in this section of the website.


The reason we are doing this is because as a result of this year's reunion some of us became a naming committee and there is an effort a-foot to have the old auditorium named in honor of Mr. Cliff Davenport!   Currently, the details are pending and being worked through with the naming committee that has approached an attorney to draft a resolution for presentation before the school board.  If we are able to have the auditorium renamed in Memorial for Mr. Cliff Davenport, we will post that event here in the future.



Please enjoy this slide show of the talking walls of Alton Middle School .

Click the photo below to view pictures and then Click on the vertical side bar once you are on the Picture Trail Site to see and print pictures if you like with frames around them.  You also have the option of viewing them as a slide show. 

Visit My Photos - 26 Pics

AHS Wall Messages