Always known for their competitive sports teams, the “Dragons” is a fitting symbol for Malad High School. You would certainly think that the mascot, the dragon, came about because of the rich Welsh heritage the Malad Valley is known for. It certainly fits, especially when you read the Welsh legend about the red dragon, Y Ddraig Goch, who fights with an invading white dragon. Well that is a great thought, but apparently that isn’t what happened!
The following information was provided by Fay Cottle in an edition of The Idaho Enterprise:
“According to Homer Williams, retired Executive Director of the Idaho High School Activities Association and former Malad resident, Malad High School athletic teams got to be known as the ‘Dragons’ quite by accident.
“It started, he said, many years ago when a community baseball team he was playing on got a chance to buy some baseball uniforms at a ‘real bargain’.
“Homer said that when the uniforms arrived and the troop opened up the box, they soon discovered why the price had been so good. The word ‘Dragons’ was printed on each one.
“Because they had been given such a good price on the uniforms and because they needed them, the team decided to keep the uniforms, and with the result, of course, being that the community baseball team became known as the ‘Malad Dragons’.
“A couple of years after the baseball team took on the name, the student body of Malad High School adopted the ‘Dragons’ as their official mascot symbol. (Thanks to Principal Jerry Esplin for passing this bit of history on.)”
If that story is true, it is quite a coincidence that this would happen, especially since many Malad sportsmen were known as “The Fighting Welsh”.
What about the “M”? The “M” is the small mountain east of Malad that has been the focal identification of Malad City before there were ever highway signs.
According to James J. Parsons, these giant capital letters that adorn hillsides near many cities and towns in the American West, can be traced back to the decade of 1905-1915. They have almost always been built and maintained by college or high-school student groups.
In the case of the “M”, an actual date for its creation has not been found, but some sources say that it was created around the start of the high school, which was built in 1921. An “M” Day used to be held annually. An excerpt from a 1925 yearbook describes an “M” Day.
“Both the boys and girls of the M.H.S. showed much interest in making the annual “M” Day a success. Every boy did his part no matter whether he was small or large, by carrying the whitewash up the steep, rocky mountain to give the “M” its annual polish.
“The girls also helped by staying at the school house and preparing a tempting lunch for the boys when they returned. Both boys and girls were well paid for their labors by seeing the snow-white “M” standing alone upon the mountain peek, silently praising the industry and loyalty of the school.”
Have you ever wondered why the Malad High School yearbook is called The Mirror? A good explanation comes from the forward in the 1946 yearbook where it states, “Since time began, man has sought mirrors for the reflection of his actions. The placid lake was probably the first in which he beheld his image. As time went on, he began to devise more permanent and accurate reflectors. One of these is the printed page with its rich collection of memories and past experiences. May this Mirror reflect to you a vivid picture of your high school days.”
What a great thought! The yearbook is a permanent reflection of each student, showing memories and experiences of a time in their life that helps define them and mold their lives for the future.
H.L. Herbert, the music instructor at Malad High School, composed the Malad High School song. It is known that Herbert taught at Malad High School in 1940, but it is not known how many years he taught here. The words to the song are:
“Joyous and ever loyal,
Let us root for old Malad High.
Let every heart sing
and every voice ring,
There’s no time to grieve or sigh.
It’s ever onward, our hearts pursuing,
May defeat, ne’re our ardor cool.
But united we will root for our
Malad High School.”