History Of The Onarga Military School Alumni Association
It is evident that some type of Alumni organization was in existence, probably dating from the graduation of the first Grand Prairie Seminary class in 1871. In various early Grand Prairie Seminary catalogs mention is made of the annual reunions.
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There have been many attempts to form and keep an active alumni association of the Onarga Military School, but it wasn't until 1947 when fourteen alumni met in the office of Major John A. Stienecker that the nucleus of an active alumni association was formed. In March of 1948 letters were mailed to 300 known alumni, announcing the contemplated organization. Shortly thereafter a meeting was held in the La Salle Hotel in Chicago and 60 former students met with Col. Bittinger and Col. Ludwick when by-laws and other business was discussed.
The first homecoming of this new organization was held at the school in October 1948. Fifty alumni attended. Among the accomplishments of this alumni association was the erection of a sign at either end of the town of Onarga advertising the school. The association grew to an active membership of 600 alumni.
We don't know much about the OMS Alumni Association after its reestablishment in 1948; however, there are some memories of it or remnants of it continuing through the centennial in 1963.
In October 1992 there was another resurrection of the alumni association when a large number of alumni met on the campus in Onarga. Since then there have been annual meetings in Onarga and small gatherings of one nature or another at different locations around the country.
The alumni association that was reorganized in 1992 is still active today.
(The information contained in this historical accounting is taken from the
1863-1963 centennial booklet produced by Lt. Col. T. M. Frazier in 1963)
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