Vail Hall

Our Vision

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.

Linger Hall - Sunset
Linger Hall during Winter Sunset

Our Story

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 Trustee’s to close St. John’s Military School. 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 was 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 this 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, and that 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 lesson’s learned and the progress they’ve made to date.

Our Future

Museum Artists Rendition
Proposed Museum – Artists Rendition

The Board of Directors moved quickly and on March 14, 2019 legally formed with the State of Kansas a non-profit corporation called St. John’s Military School Historical Museum Inc. In April 2019, through assistance with legal council, 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 of March 15, 2019.

St. John’s Military School and Saint Francis Ministries Merger

On September 26th, 2019 Leadership from St. John’s Military School and St. Francis Ministries announced a merger agreement. Through cooperation with St. Francis, the history and memories awarded from that history of St. John’s Military School will forever remain preserved.  
Some Key Points regarding the St. John’s Military School Historical Museum and the merger 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.
  • The Name of the Campus will be named “St. John’s Ministries and School) leaving the SJMS mantra intact
  • A very attractive lease agreement between Saint Francis Ministries and the St. John’s Military School Historical Museum for 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. As such, plans for a May 2021 opening were formulated.

The Grand Opening of St. John’s Military School Historical Museum is currently planned for May 14th and May 15th, 2021.:

Meet the Board of Directors

On behalf of the St. John’s Military School Historical Museum (SJMSHM) Board of Directors, I want to say “Welcome home.” As Old Boys, I want you to know that it is an honor to be working for you! SJMSHM is dedicated to the goals and mission statement of the former “Old Boys Association”; to enrich the lives of all past Cadets by melding the traditions of our past with the potential of our future. Becoming involved in the museum as an 1887 F-Troop member is a way to “pay it forward.” I challenge each of you to consider how you can make a difference! Mike Wagner – President

Mike Wagner
Class of 1991

Jeremy Baerns
Jeremy Baerns

Jeremy Baerns
Vice President
Class of 1995

Tim Piowaty
Secretary / Treasurer
Class of 1992

Jim Armstrong
Class of 1970

Roy Lawrence
Roy Lawrence

Roy Lawrence
SJMS Faculty 1987-2019

Terry Plumberg

Terry Plumberg
Former SJMS Faculty

Kent Tretheway
Kent Tretheway

Kent Tretheway
Director / Curator
Class of 1971

Tom Pestinger

Lee Young
Former SJMS Board Member