Montgomery Mall Eagle Now Mascot at Schuylkill County High School
The former Wanamaker Eagle at Montgomery Mall, once a popular meeting place for shoppers, is now perched outside a Schuylkill County high school where it serves as its mascot. The eagle took flight from the mall in 1995.
How often did you meet your friends at the eagle outside John Wanamaker's at Montgomery Mall?
How many times did you try to drop a wishing penny near it?
In 1995, the Wanamaker Eagle outside the then John Wanamaker's department store at Montgomery Mall flew north forever — and it's now perched outside Blue Mountain High School in Schuylkill County.
Fans of the Facebook page "Old Images of Montgomery County, PA" recently reminisced about the former popular meeting spot at Montgomery Mall in Montgomeryville.
According to a November 2008 article in The Reporter, that same 7-foot-tall granite and bronze eagle is now the meeting place — and the mascot — of the high school.
Up until 1995, Wanamaker's did business at the anchor store that is now demolished to make room for Wegmans.
According to The Reporter, Wanamaker's became Hecht's on Aug. 28, 1995 (which became Strawbridge's and then Boscov's).
At the time, the Hecht's corporate chain held a contest to find homes for the Montgomery Mall eagle — and nine others of its abstract flock, according to the article.
A writing contest was held in November 1995, according to the article, aimed at high schools and other public institutions.
By the end of the contest, 35 students wrote letters imploring why the eagle deserved a how in his or her respective hometowns, according to the article.
A Blue Moutain High School junior at the time, Erin Frampton, of Orwigsburg, PA, wrote the winning letter that brought the Montgomery Mall eagle to her school, according to the article.
Why didn't the eagle end up at the nearby North Penn High School?
The principal at the time, Juan Baughn, did not want the eagle and did not even toy with the notion of changing the North Penn Knight to the North Penn Eagle.
"We capture eagles; we don't become them," Baughn was quoted in the article,.
Did you go to Norristown Area High School? Do you remember a bronze eagle behind the reception desk? That's the closest Wanamaker eagle in our area, courtesy of the Wynnemoor Hecht's.
You can also find one at the Lehigh Valley Mall.