History of Middle School 74
"Soaring from Good, to Great and Beyond; We're not just a School, We're a Family."
Middle School opened its doors as a junior high school in 1954 and has been one of the highest performing schools in New York City ever since. Located at the intersection of Oceania Street and Horace Harding Expressway, M.S. 74's distinctive red brick exterior has been a fixture of the Bayside and Oakland Gardens community for over 60 years.
Tidbits about 74 History
- Junior High School 74 was built during the post-World War II “baby boom” era. The location was chosen due to overcrowding in local elementary schools (mainly Public Schools 26, 46 and 162). These elementary schools were operating on split sessions.
- The groundbreaking for the school took place on December 26, 1951, with a scheduled opening date of September 14, 1953.
- The teamsters strike of 1953 prevented the school from opening as scheduled, as the sewer system of the school could not be completed.
- The cost of the school building was approximately $2.7 million.
- The first students entered the school building on December 1, 1953. 1,600 students from kindergarten through 8th grade attended.
- The school’s official dedication ceremony took place in May of 1954, with the school serving as a Junior High School beginning in September of that year. The first graduation from the JHS 74 took place in June of 1955.
- The original address of the school was 61-44 210th Street, prior to the construction of Oceania Street. The original phone number was BA 4-8424.
From the School's Original Guest Book
Written by Edwin T. Pitt,
First Principal of Nathaniel Hawthorne JHS 74