Madison Central High School — Madison, Wisconsin

The Central Arch, Madison Central High School, Madison, WI
(click image for Google Street View)
The Central Arch

Madison Central High School

mascot: Tigers
colors: Orange & Black

We have done our own independent research on Madison Central High School, but there is probably nothing covered here (or at least covered better) than what you can find on the Madison Central High School History blog. It is a wonderful, thorough site. I encourage all alumni to explore it.

Reunion Apparel for Madison Central High School
Madison Central High School had its beginnings in a church basement in 1854. Originally named Madison High School, it moved to its permanent site on Wisconsin Ave. in 1858. In 1908 it moved into the building it would call home for the next 61 years. The name was changed to Central High School in 1922. In 1966, Wisconsin High School merged with Central and the school was renamed again, this time becoming Central-University High School. The school was closed at the end of the 1968-69 school year. In 1986, the building was demolished, leaving only the arch on Wisconsin Ave. standing.


Madison Central High School History History, memories, reunions, current events, more
The Madison Mirror Every issue of the student newspaper (large .pdf’s)
I Remember Madison Central A blog to post your memories
Central Alumni on Flickr Hundreds of CHS photos
Obituaries (pre-1990) Alumni obituaries
Obituaries (post-1990) Alumni obituaries
Teacher/staff Obituaries Obituaries of teachers, administrators and staff
Alumni & Reunion News Alumni & reunion news
CHS on Facebook CHS news, memories, friends
World War II Scrapbook Former students write home
Photos and Articles CHS photos & articles from the Wisconsin Historical Society
Dane Co. Historical Society DCHS website
Madison Guy Post about Madison Central High School
Class of 1960 Class of ’60 website
Class of 1965 Class of ’65 website
Class of 1969 Class of ’69 website Wisconsin High School site


1897 – United States High School Football Champions (Detroit, MI)
1940 – City Champions, Big-8 Champions
1941 – City Champions, Big-8 co-Champions
1952 – City Champions
1953 – City Champions

1949 – State Champions (Coach Gus Pollack) Madison Central 8, La Crosse Logan 6
1963 – State Runners-up (Coach Peter Olson) Kenosha 2, Madison Central 0

1912 – State Champions (Lawrence College of Appleton statewide tournament)
1918 – State Champions (Coach G. A. Crispin) Madison Central 37, Watertown 17
1927 – State Runners-up (Coach Howard Johnson) Eau Claire 18, Madison Central 13
1928 – State Runners-up (Coach Howard Johnson) Watertown 27, Madison Central 14

Track & Field
1965 – State Runners-Up

Boys Volleyball
1949 – State Champions (Coach Gus Pollock) Madison Central over Belleville
1950 – State Champions (Coach Gus Pollock) Madison Central over Waukesha

Noted Alumni

Wisconsin Football Coaches Hall of Fame
Harold “Gus” Pollock
coached high school football at Slinger (1934-35), Madison Central (1936-64) and Madison LaFollette (1965-75).
Gus coached for 42 years in the Madison school system. Most of these years were spent at Madison Central until the doors were closed. Teams at Central won “Big Eight” championships in 1940 and 1941. His teams won the Madison city championship a number of times. Gus also coached basketball and baseball. In 1949 his volleyball and baseball teams won the state championship. One of his most significant contributions was his efforts along with Willis Jones in the formation of the Four Lakes Football program in Madison. Gus retired in 1977.

Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Hall of Fame
Joe Franklin
(Class of 1964) inducted as a player. Set scoring records at UW and in the Big-10.

Madison Sports Hall of Fame
Dave Kelliher
was a basketball official for 32 years, sports coordinator for 28 years and nine-time letterman at Madison Central High School

Wayne “Knobby” Kelliher was a Madison Central alumni, football coach and baseball coach. Madison East’s athletics field is named after him, Kelliher Field. Wayne was the author of the book, Football Madison Style, a history of high school football in Madison, Wisconsin .

Wisconsin Soccer Association Hall of Fame
Madison Area Soccer Hall of Fame
In 1990, Graham “Gray” Perrett (Class of 1955) was inducted into the Wisconsin Soccer Association Hall of Fame. In 2009, he became part of the inaugural class of the Madison Area Soccer Hall of Fame. From

  • Grey Perrett was an early Madison Soccer Club goalkeeper who’s playing career was cut short by injury. He turned to coaching and formed the Amira Soccer Club who played in the State Major League. He later served as the Commissioner for the Capitol Region of the Wisconsin Soccer Association. Grey passed away in 2008.
  • University of Wisconsin Athletics Hall of Fame
    Eddie Withers
    played football & basketball at CHS, was a collegiate All-American in 1950 and was drafted by the Green Bay Packers.

    University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Hall of Fame
    William Earl Schreiber
    played on Central High School’s 1897 National Championship football team and UW’s Big-10 Championship team. He later created the Athletics Dept. at Montana State University.

    Is there a Physics Hall of Fame? There should be.
    John Hasbrouk van Vleck
    (Class of 1916) won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1977. During his long career, he was a professor at schools such as the University of Wisconsin, Harvard and Oxford.

    John Bardeen (Class of 1923), former Dean of the UW Medical School, was a member of a very exclusive club: winners of multiple Nobel Prizes. Dr. Bardeen won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1956 and again in 1972.

    Stoughton Hall of Fame
    Don Wahlin
    bought out his bankrupt employer and turned the company into Stoughton Trailers, eventually employing 1,700 people. He was the primary influence behind the development of the Stoughton Youth Hockey Association and the Mandt Community Center.

    Please leave a comment below with any corrections or additions to this post

    7 thoughts on “Madison Central High School — Madison, Wisconsin

    1. I was wondering what the name of the Yearbook was called from 1921-1925. I have the yearbooks of My Grandmother and Aunt. I believe they went to Central.

    2. The yearbook was called Tychoberahn from 1900 to 1929. During the 1930s and the subsequent years of the Great Depression, it was called the Orange & Black (and was in a magazine format, not a hardcover book format). During the early 1940s, through the end of World War II, it was called The Mirror because it was published by the school newspaper (The Madison Mirror). After WW II, it once again became the Tychoberahn — and that name was retained until the school closed and the last yearbook was published in 1969.

      Here’s a link to an explanation of the name Tychoberahn:

    3. Madison Central High School – I have The Orange and Black Yearbook from Class of 1937; along with several newspaper clippings about an accident in the bleachers during the graduation ceremony. My Aunt – W. ELoise Gosch, was a member of the Class of 1937 – only moving to Madison the month before school started – so she is not in the yearbook. But she kept it all these years. Eloise passed away in 2011 – Eloise Gosch McKinstray, in Columbia, MD. I would like to donate/mail yearbook to someone connected to the history of Madison Central High School. If you send me address, I will mail info. Thanks,
      Ann Blodgett, Jacksonville, FL

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