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History of Cannon School

Over 50 Years of Growth and Learning

Smack dab in the middle of Union Street, steps away from the bustle of downtown Concord, sits a grand white house. It was built in 1905 in the Queen Anne style, spans nearly 10,000 square feet, and features distinct turrets and a dramatic cupola. 65 North Union Street once belonged to J.W. Cannon, founder of the Cannon Manufacturing Company—but back in 1968, it had been sitting vacant for years. 

At that same time, a group of local parents had come together to discuss the possibility of opening a new school. There seemed to be enough interest, so the committee set their sights on a location. Jane Liles approached J.W. Cannon’s son, Charles, about the possibility of using the house on Union Street as the site for the school. 
And the rest, as they say, is history. 

From our roots as Cabarrus Academy on Union Street to our current 65-acre campus on Poplar Tent Road, Cannon School has experienced change and growth few could have imagined back in 1969.

In the five decades since, Cannon School has transformed itself from a small school in downtown Concord to one of the Charlotte region's top independent college-preparatory schools. Today, under the leadership of Interim Head of School Matt Gossage, Cannon School serves 1050 students from Charlotte, Davidson, Huntersville, Mooresville, Cornelius, Kannapolis, and Salisbury, in addition to Concord. Read on to learn about the timeline of the last fifty years. 

Milestones in Cannon's History

History of Cannon in Photos

65 Union Street North - The original location of Cabarrus Academy/Cannon School
1972 Seniors - The first graduating class as Cabarrus Academy
Kindergarten Added 1976
Richard Snyder becomes our 5th Headmaster in 1988
Cabarrus Academy relocates to Poplar Tent Road
Name of school changes to Cannon School in 1998
2002 Seniors - The first graduating class as Cannon School
Matt Gossage becomes our 6th Head of School in 2006
Cannon adopts the educational philosophy of “Adaptive Expertise in 2007
Cannon joins Charlotte Independent Schools Athletic Association (CISAA) in 2008
Our beautiful campus - aerial photo 2018
Christopher Jones becomes our 7th Head of School in 2019

Continue Exploring

Learn about our new Head of School, Mike Drew.

Meet the directors and division heads that comprise Cannon's Leadership Team.

Cannon's Board of Trustees are responsible for guiding the character, mission, and culture of the School. Meet this year's Board Leaders and Members.

The Board of Visitors at Cannon School brings a talented group of volunteer leaders together to discuss with each other and with the Head of School the key strategic issues facing the school and the surrounding area.

Our new mission statement is a clarification of who we are as a school community—one that nurtures all relationships in order to engage each individual learner in finding his or her own path to growth.