Latrobe School history told by Old Timers
Latrobe School District has only 130 students, but they know their history — the history of the town of Latrobe and their schools, at least. On Sept. 20, students and parents from the district’s two schools received an unequalled history lesson from a panel of former graduates of the one-room Latrobe Elementary School along with some pieces of history.
Yerington resident Nate Ervin, great-grandson of Latrobe founder James Harrison Miller, brought copies of his great-grandfather and great-grandmother’s diaries as well as a framed portrait of James Harrison Miller for Miller Hill School. “This school was named for my great-grandfather and I thought it would be nice if they had the portrait,” said Ervin.
Latrobe School District superintendent and principal Jean Pinotti organized a panel of former graduates and a special assembly for the presentation.
“I was planning on just giving them the portrait and saying a few words, so I was really surprised by how many people were there and to see old friends,” said Ervin, 80. “Out of my 29,000 days of life, that was one of the best.”
Helen Lasswell Cort, 84, Jackie Varozza Fox, 84, and Phillip Mocettini, 86, joined Ervin in the Miller’s Hill gym to share with rapt students the way life was when they attended the one-room Latrobe School. Ervin, who lived only yards away from the school, served as janitor when he was in seventh and eighth grades. For $6 a month he swept the floor of the schoolhouse, built up the fire, pumped water from the well into a crock for the daily water supply and cleaned erasers.
“When I graduated from eighth grade in 1947 there were nine students in my class,” said Ervin, who was an aerospace engineer for Aerojet for 30 years. “I always say the secret ...