Thus the Philadelphia North American is 1909 is quoted in an unidentified clipping once preserved in the editorial office of the Centre Democrat. The institution, which still stands high above the Big Spring in Bellefonte, had been in existence for more than a century when the sweeping tribute appeared. Twenty-three years later it was to close its doors for good after 127 years of almost unbroken service as a public and private institution
During its entire existence it emphasized college preparation and its high reputation as a boys school rested on the success of its graduates. The list of notable men who attended the Academy is long and includes Governor Andrew Curtin, the Civil War governor; Ferdinand Ward, business partner of President Grant; and Judge James C. Furst..
Two notable Academy faculty members included Isaella Hill and Carl Snavely. The latter, legendary football coach of the 1920s, was elected to the Football Hall of Fame in 1964.
If there were 18 different headmasters during the first half of the Academy's life, during the second there were only two: Rev. James V. P. Hughes and his son, James R. Hughes.
Although the Academy continued to maintain its reputation as a fine academic institution under James R. Hughes, his major contribution to the fame of the athletic program. Under the direction of his father, girls calisthenics clubs had been organized by 1875 and football and baseball were being played by 1890. It remained for "Mr. James" to supply the enthusiasm and direction necessary to produce championship teams.
More Complete Information on the Bellefonte Academy