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History of Minne Lusa School

Opened in a re-used school building in 1917, North Omaha’s Minne Lusa School has a long history.

When developer Charles Marten dreamed up the largest neighborhood development in Omaha, he didn’t include a chunk of land for a school. However, he quickly realized it was necessary and carved out space along the boulevard. This is a history of the Minne Lusa School.

Minne Lusa School, North Omaha, Nebraska
This 1926 pic shows two things: First is the original building for the Minne Lusa School on the right, moved there in 1917. It was originally the Fort Street School for Incorrigible Boys. Second, you can see the original size of Minne Lusa School, which was tiny! Shown here is the construction site for the new wings.

Built in 1913, the Fort Street Special School for Incorrigible Boys was located at North 30th and Browne Street. Closing after just four years, the school was relocated to North 28th and Ida Streets in 1917.

This is the 1925 addition to Minne Lusa School under construction. The scrap lumber is from the original schoolhouse, which was demolished on site.

In 1922, a new six-room brick building was finished. Designed by John Latenser & Sons, the building address is 2630 Ida Street. In 1924 it expanded for almost 350 students in kindergarten through 8th grade. The building was added onto in 1925 when the combination gym and cafeteria were built. In 1950, classrooms were added, and in 1970 a new kitchen was built. The building was completely renovated and reopened in 1997.

As of 2019, the school had 450 students in pre-kindergarten through 6th grade. The City of Omaha continually looks past this building for historical preservation because of its lack of integrity.

Do you have any details or memories about Minne Lusa School to share? Please leave them in the comments!

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BONUS PICS!

Minne Lusa School, 2630 Ida Street, North Omaha, Nebraska
This is a 1925 architectural drawing of the additions to Minne Lusa School. This was designed by John Latenser & Sons.
Boy Scouts from Minne Lusa Troop 30 practice firefighting skills at OFD Station 15 in this March 8, 1931 newspaper feature.
Boy Scouts from Minne Lusa School Troop 30 practice firefighting skills at OFD Station 15 in this March 8, 1931 newspaper feature.

2 replies on “History of Minne Lusa School”

I went to Minne Lusa in 1980 and remember bein part of the safety patrol. I also remember being in class the day that President Reagan was shot and how all of a sudden teachers pulled out televisions to watch the news. I remember the Principals name was Mr. Jorgensen.

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Hi, Adam. Thanks for another great piece on North Omaha history! I grew up at 25th and Ida, just up the street from Minne Lusa School where I went to Kindergarten in the 1952/1953 school before going to Blessed Sacrament for grades 1 through 8.

I still have a few memories from Minne Lusa, including the little rugs that each of us had to take nap on. I’m not sure what the point of those naps was – I remember that many of us continued to socialize during nap time though we were supposed to be quiet. The floor of our room was hardwood, and with a little practice one could navigate his rug inchworm-like from place to place, perhaps to meet up with a comrade or to get to a prime location underneath the baby grand piano in the room.

I remember that the name of our very kind teacher was Mrs. Greavy (may be wrong on the spelling – I was only 5!).

Even though I transferred to Blessed Sacrament, all the kids in the neighborhood used the Minne Lusa School playground. The only piece of equipment was a jungle Jim that I’m sure wouldn’t meet modern safety standards, but was fun for us. Mostly, the playground was a good space for a baseball game.

I remember a Fall festival on that playground with games and food and costumes. There was also a “haunted house” amusement in which kids entered one of the two building entrances on the playground side and went through a series of scary stations in the darkened building basement before exiting through the other door back to the playground.

I haven’t thought of these things in years, so thanks for jogging my memory, Adam! I’ll save some other memories for your Minne Lusa neighborhood article.

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