To Collect, Preserve and Display the history of St. John’s Military School and emphasize the value military-based learning institutions have contributed to society in the United States.
In February 2019, A letter from the President of St. John’s Military School was released to the public that a resolution was passed by the school’s Board of Trustees to close St. John’s Military School. The immediate outcry by alumni surfaced on Social Media, Phone calls to the current Old Boy’s Association and to the school, and emails began pouring in. Shock, anger, and sadness were displayed across the world as thousands of Old Boys, hundreds of staff, and countless parents, friends, and families of St. John’s Military School heard the news.
Up until that point, the Old Boy’s Association was a community association recognized by the school and not legally formed as a public entity. Board President Mike Wagner called an emergency meeting and explained his vision, which was to concentrate on
A.) The Final Commencement of SJMS, and
B.) to preserve, and protect the history, antiquities, and legacy of St. John’s Military School for all Alumni to be able to have a place to come “home”.
Board members set up meetings with other Alumni Associations from military schools that had closed and met with their boards of directors for lessons learned and the progress they’ve made to date. The Board moved quickly and on March 14, 2019, it legally formed with the State of Kansas a non-profit corporation called “St. John’s Military School Historical Museum Inc.” In April 2019, through the assistance of legal counsel, we formally filed with the IRS for 501(c)3 classification as a not-for-profit corporation for tax exemption status for our donors. Our filing was approved by the IRS and our tax-exempt status backdated to the filing of our Incorporation on March 15, 2019.
St. John’s Military School and Saint Francis Ministries
On September 26th, 2019 Leadership from St. John’s Military School and St. Francis Ministries announced an agreement. Through cooperation with St. Francis, the history and memories of St. John’s Military School will forever remain preserved.
Some Key Points regarding the St. John’s Military School Historical Museum are:
- The St. John’s Military School Historical Museum (a separate non-profit entity) will be permanently established on campus.
- All building names of buildings already established on campus will remain unchanged.
- A very attractive lease agreement between Saint Francis Ministries and the St. John’s Military School Historical Museum for the use of Linger Hall was inked. This agreement ensures the perpetuation of the museum and preserving the history of St. John’s Military School.
Renovation and Grand Opening
Despite a worldwide pandemic, plans continued to move forward on a renovation plan for Linger Hall and a grand opening. Originally planned for September 2020, that date was moved as much of the United States was on severe restrictions, and holding such an event to the limitations posed by local and state governments under CDC guidelines would make such an event nearly impossible to hold with any type of dignity and great expense. On May 14 and 15th, 2021 St. John’s Military School Historical Museum held its Grand Opening.