American Community Schools Alumni Association

History of the American Community School / Lincoln School

For the early part of the 1900's, the primary school serving the American community in Buenos Aires was the American Grammar and High School (AGHS). The AGHS was the English language division of Colegio Ward, a Christian school founded in 1913 and run by the Methodist Church Board of Missions. Colegio Ward in Ramos Mejia, many of you will recall, is where the American community held its annual Columbus Day Picnic.

By 1936, the AGHS was located in a large older three-story mansion on Avenida Rivadavia in Flores. Shortly thereafter the school moved over to Belgrano near the "R" train station into another older but nicer mansion with a large garden. That mansion was used until 1962 and in its later years served grades 8-12. Most of the Americans and many of the other foreigners and Argentines who went to the school lived either in Belgrano or on the train lines out of Retiro.

In 1936, Miss Allena Luce, who taught music and choral singing at AGHS, left to found Lincoln School . Lincoln opened its doors on December 1, 1936 with a summer school session in a roomy 2 story house on Calle Freyre. In March 1937 the first school year began with 35 students.

By 1939 Lincoln School had an enrollment of 139 students. Ms Luce served as the first principal from 1936-41. Since the beginning of the first school year, Lincoln offered the Argentine primary course, which was directed by Sr. Sabino Bardi for many years and was accredited as Asociacion Escuelas Lincoln. After outgrowing its first home Lincoln moved to another facility in Zapiola and eventually to a larger facility at Sucre 3012 in Belgrano. Up until 1953 both the AGHS and Lincoln School served the American community. That year both schools were combined into the American Community School (ACS) and retained the name of Asociacion Escuelas Lincoln under the Argentine school system. The consolidation allowed the American community to concentrate its educational efforts at one school and better utilize the resources available.

In 1954 the elementary school campus was relocated to a mansion purchased in La Lucila on Andres Ferreyra 4073 overlooking the Rio de La Plata. The high school campus remained at the mansion on Freire 1899, adjacent to the Belgrano "R" train station. In 1962, after the completion of a new elementary school building, both campuses were consolidated at the one La Lucila facility and remain there to this day. Several major expansion programs have occurred at La Lucila since the early 1960's.

Lincoln University College is now located on campus providing opportunities for a two year college associate degree. In recent years use of the American Community School name was discontinued in favor of the Lincoln School, in recognition of the large international enrollment that now characterizes the student body. As of the start of the 1997-98 academic year Lincoln School included an enrollment of 858 students (grades K-12) and 107 full time faculty members. Campus facilities include tennis courts, playing fields, an Olympic-size swimming pool, and five major buildings containing a gymnasium, auditorium, a cafeteria, five science laboratories, two libraries, a 300 seat theater, media centers, a well equipped health clinic and 67 classrooms.

Lincoln School graduates have attended many of the world's most prestigious colleges and universities, with numerous alumni achieving positions of high prominence.

Comments? This history sketch was put together from various sources. A special thanks to Barbara Ann Zimmelman'41 and a letter from Allena Luce dated June 1952, for early source material for this history. Comments regarding accuracy and significant errors and omissions are welcome. Simply contact us.

American Community Schools Alumni Association

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