ShareThis Page
Carnegie/Bridgeville

Delving into Bridgeville High School's history from 1939 to 1941

| Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017, 2:33 a.m.

This month the Bridgeville Area Historical Society “Second Tuesday” workshop returned to its review of the history of Bridgeville High School, this time focusing on the Classes of 1939, 1940 and 1941.

The discussion actually began in the middle of 1938. The football team was on the upswing that fall and celebrated a thumping of Clark High, 12-0. The senior dramatists presented a comedy, “The Nut Farm,” with a cast that included Gloria Lutz.

The basketball team was quite successful, led by Clair “Tay” Malarkey. They topped Bethel, 31-25, to win the championship of their section. The star center for Bethel in that game was Robert Hast, who would make history at BHS a decade later. Their run through the WPIAL playoffs ended with a decisive 41-32 loss to Springdale.

There were 74 graduates in the Class of 1939. They included Alex Asti, Bridgeville's first fatal casualty of World War II; future coach and teacher Clyde “Tiny” Carson; and Bob Weise, elder brother of society President Mary Weise.

BHS' football team met a lot of success in the fall of 1939. They were unbeaten in Class B with a clear path to the WPIAL championship when they met South Fayette in their annual rivalry game. Their opponents, winless in eight games, once again proved the old adage that past records are meaningless in rivalry games by pulling off the biggest upset in the history of this long series, 6-0.

The facilitator showed a lovely photograph of the 1940 Senior Ball that he found in a scrapbook in the society's archives. The gymnasium in the high school is lavishly decorated. The girls all look like May Queens; their escorts, like Lochinvars. Two years later they would be wrapped up in the horrors of war. The Class of 1940 included 108 graduates, by far the biggest group for the high school up to that time.

The 1940 fall football team was a powerhouse featuring halfbacks “Smiles” Perkins and Perry Hackley. They capped an undefeated season with a 12-0 drubbing of South Fayette, avenging the previous year's loss. BHS and Masontown ended in a tie for second place in WPIAL Class B and were forced to play an elimination game to earn the right to the playoff game, a game that the locals lost, 6-0.

The BHS basketball team repeated as section champions before losing to Sharpsburg in the playoffs 33-23. The track and field team fared much better, winning the Class B WPIAL title.

Pattee Kelley provided a wealth of information on the Class of 1941 by bringing in programs from their Class Night and Commencement that her mother, Margaret “Pat” True, had lovingly saved. There were 86 seniors in the Class of 1941.

The next “Second Tuesday” workshop is scheduled for 7 p.m. Dec. 12 in the Bridge­ville Area Historical Society, 441 Station St. We will attempt to cover the Classes of 1942, 1943 and 1944.

John Oyler is a Tribune-Review contributing writer. Reach him at 412-343-1652 or joylerpa@icloud.com. Read more from him at mywutb.blogspot.com.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me