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Alma Mater

About the Union Alma Mater

1981-Union-High-School-Marching-BandThe original tune is from "Annie Lisle," an 1857 ballad by Boston, Mass., songwriter H. S. Thompson.  The tune was later used as the Alma Mater for Cornell University, and has since been used by colleges and high schools all over the country including ours.

It took the work of a few people to rediscover the original lyrics and the tune for the Alma Mater used by Union High Schools in the early half of the 20th century.

Shortly after Denise Vaniadis, retired Director of Student Life, came to Union in 1992, she worked with then Principal Dave Stauffer and Kenille Elmore, then director of Union Choirs, to bring back the Alma Mater which had not been sung in decades.

“Denise and Dave were instrumental in wanting to bring back the Alma Mater,” explained Linda Blythe, an administrative assistant at the High School. “Kenille was the choir director at the time. I know we were singing the Alma Mater in 1994-95. We have sung the Alma Mater in all assemblies, retreats and graduations since then.”

Elmore found the lyrics.

“The words I found in an old Union yearbook,” Elmore recalled.  “I think it was the 1921 yearbook.  Then, I found the tune that was used.  Doug Henderson arranged two tunes for my choir.  One was too contemporary sounding, the other was more traditional.  That is the one I started using and is still being used to this today. Hopefully, this history will never get "lost" again.”

UNION HIGH SCHOOL ALMA MATER

Union High stands proud forever!
Loyalty rides high.
Memories, forget them never
As the years go by.
Friends, we make from year to year.
Watch as goals are reached
Union High will always be dear
To our destiny.