Walking tour of Downtown Latrobe, PA
A walking tour of some of the most hisotric and iconic buildings in Latrobe.
On September 19th, 1853, the Loyalhanna Lodge No. 275 of Free and Accepted Masons was consecrated becoming the second oldest lodge in the county. In 1919 for $20,000 the Free Masons purchased a building site on the corner of Ligonier and Spring Street. In April of 1927 the building was complete, but was sold soon after in 1938 to Reliance Life Insurance Company. It wasn't until 1945 that the Lodge created a building and trust group that successfully bought the building back.
Latrobe Area Historical Society is an all volunteer non profit organization chartered in 1974 striving to preserve the legacy of the southwestern Pennsylvania area in and around Latrobe through the collection, study and documentation of the community's heritage and the preservation of the local history and ethnic roots. The focus area of the City of Latrobe, Unity Township and parts of Derry Township has a rich history, from colonial days in Unity Township to the beginnings of the industrial age, the birth of professional football, and modern innovations in business and industry. Latrobe also is the birthplace of golf great Arnold Palmer and beloved television personality Fred Rogers, of Mr. Rogers Neighborhood.
Mozart Hall is one of the oldest and most iconic buildings in downtown Latrobe. Built in 1890 by George Seiler, the son of German immigrants, Mozart Hall reflects the architecture of many grand opera houses in old Germany. Throughout the 1890s many operettas, musicals and concerts were performed within Mozart Hall. In 1912, the entirety of Mozart was bought by men's organization, the Latrobe Club, and was used for various activities and meetings. Between the late 1950s to 1980 the building went unused and progressively began to fall apart until recently in 2017, when the building was restored to its former glory. Mozart Hall continues to be a unique and iconic landmark in the City of Latrobe.
Born and raised in Latrobe, Mister Rogers was the creator, composer, host, and puppeteer of the award winning TV program Mister Rogers Neighborhood; a program that emphasized kindness, compassion, and learning. Located on the corner of Jefferson and Main Street in James Hillis Rogers Memorial Park, sits the Fred Rogers historical marker and statue to honor his many accomplishments and contributions to the Latrobe community and the nation as a whole.
In 1940, when Harry Lattanzino purchased the Doherty Hardware building, he transformed the upstairs hall to a skating rink known as Skateland, but referred to by youth as “the Rink.” By the 1950’s the building was commonly known as Harry’s Danceland. It had become the scene of Friday night dances and live concerts by over 100 top recording artists from across the country. Some of which included Chubby Checker, Bo Diddly, Jimi Hendrix, Jay and the Shondels and many more top performers.
This historical marker and colorful sculpture commemorates the 1904 invention of the banana split by Dr. David Strickler, a 23-year-old apprentice pharmacist at Tassell Pharmacy. His creation was enjoyed and publicized by students from nearby Saint Vincent College and before long, his creation was served by ice cream parlors and restaurants around the world. Strickler later purchased the building and operated Strickler's Drug Store.
The building (332 and 334 Main Street) is a double building that was erected in the 1880s. The structure was presumably built by George Seiler who later built Mozart Hall in 1890. The building became a home for many families and businesses until both sides became vacant in 1966. Today, 332 Main Street in downtown Latrobe is home to Jocelyn's Beauty Salon and the adjoining business at 334 Main Street is ComputerX.
In 1886, where Dainty Pastry stands today, was the site of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Between 1886 and 1922 many different businesses went in that building until it was ultimately torn down in 1952. Dainty Pastry was started by Robert Colaianne in the 1940s on Ligonier Street in Downtown Latrobe. In 1975, Theron Smith sold the lot and his building on Depot Street to Robert and Juanita Colaianne to move their bakery. Depot Street has been the home of Dainty Pastry since then.
The Latrobe Railroad Station was built by architect William H. Brown for the Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) in 1903. It is located at 329 McKinley Avenue. It served the mainline between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh for the Pennsylvania Railroad and currently serves as an Amtrak stop and an Italian restaurant.