----Begin Code---- ----End Code----

History of Evansville Day School

Passion and vision for an independent educational experience were the seeds of our humble beginnings as Evansville Preschool Inc., located in St. Paul’s Episcopal Church on Southeast First Street in 1946. Esther Baumgart, a young educator, and several of her colleagues committed themselves to a unique relationship between student and teacher. Mrs. Baumgart, our first and longest-serving teacher, spent her career teaching our students until her retirement at age 70. Mrs. Baumgart’s name is now memorialized in one of our four houses.

Evansville Preschool Inc. moved into the Austin B. Igleheart house on Sunset Avenue in 1958 and reincorporated as Evansville Day School. Along with the move, the school added primary grades to the preschool curriculum and hired J.B. Davis as the first headmaster.

Over the next years, the Day School grew in program and reputation. Before long, faculty, trustees, and school administrators added high school to the curriculum and, in 1965, the first senior class graduated from Evansville Day School.

With enrollment growing, Evansville Day School set its sight on a new location on the northern outskirts of town. By 1968, the Day School moved to its current location on North Green River Road with a 4,000 square foot classroom space, science labs, library, and expansive wooded space for outside learning.

While the facilities and locations have undergone many transitions, the mission and core values remain constant. We are committed to a student-centered education, developed around each student’s needs in the context of a learning community. We embrace a set of core values that are incorporated into our curriculum on a daily basis. We are proud to say, if the original founders were able to walk into our building today, they would feel the same sense of passion and vision they had in 1946.


Significant Events in the History of EDS

  • 1946 Episcopal Nursery School

    1946 - Founded as the Episcopal Nursery School, located in St. Paul's Episcopal Church. The school opened with seven students.

  • 1958 Independent School Incorporation

    1958 - Primary grade instruction added when classes moved to the former Austin S. lgleheart residence at 800 Sunset Avenue. Reincorporated as Evansville Day School, the institution became the first independent school in Evansville since 1923. The school had an enrollment of 80 students and tuition ranged between $180 and $360 per year.

  • 1959 Opportunity Shop Opened

    1959 - The Opportunity Shop, a non-profit, resale consignment store, was opened. All proceeds from the store are designated for school improvements, financial aid, and general operations.

  • 1961 High School Added

    1961 - A 4,000 square foot classroom, library, and laboratory addition was completed. High school grades were added to the curriculum. Tuition ranged between $270 and $600 per year, and the school had an enrollment of 131 students.

  • 1965 First Graduating Class

    1965 - The first high school senior class graduated from EDS. All seven students continued on to college.

  • 1969 Sculpture Commissioned

    1969 - The EDS sculpture was commissioned by James & Diane Igleheart, designed and created by New England artist John Matt.

  • 1982 Lower School Wing Added

    1982 - EDS added six additional classrooms to the southernmost end of the building to house the Lower School. This expansion plan set in motion a larger effort to create distinct learning spaces between the educational divisions.

  • 1984 Upper School Wing Opened

    1984 - Upper School students can hardly imagine a time when classes were not held in the Upper School classrooms, or gatherings in the Commons, or lunch out on the deck. Prior to 1984, the Upper School was located in what is currently the Middle School wing. After a major campaign to raise $1.4 million, EDS constructed the new Upper School wing which opened for the 1984-85 academic year.

  • 1990s Intersession Formalized

    1990s - Upper School Intersession program was formalized.

  • 2012 Capital Campaign Traylor Atrium

    2012 - The Invest. Expand. Transform. Capital Campaign raised funds for the Traylor Atrium addition, and renovation projects throughout the school.

  • 2015 Sieboldt iLab Created

    2015 - The Sieboldt iLab was created as a major component of Day School's vision of  21st century, Experiential Education.