Zambelli Fireworks

Zambelli Fireworks

Many immigrants to the U.S. brought recipes with them from the Old Country, but Antony Zambelli was a bit different. When he came, he didn’t bring recipes for his grandmother’s Christmas cookies or his mother’s delicious pasta; he brought his family’s recipes for creating fireworks. Thank goodness he did so, otherwise our skies for the past one hundred plus years would have been a lot

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The Iconic Cathedral of Learning

The Iconic Cathedral of Learning

Whether University of Pittsburgh Chancellor John G. Bowman knew in 1921 when he commissioned the Cathedral of Learning to be built that it would become the symbol of the university, we don’t know. What we do know is that the cathedral is a remarkable educational edifice like no other in the country. At 535-feet tall with 40 stories, it is the tallest educational building in

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Centennial+ Pittsburgh Businesses

Centennial+ Pittsburgh Businesses

It is estimated that only 56% of businesses make it past their fifth year. How fortunate is Pittsburgh, then, that the city has numerous businesses that have been around for more than 100 years. Many of them are now large, multi-national corporations—household names–but there are some smaller, lesser-known entities that have survived for more than a century that you should know. The following are some

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The Henry W. Oliver Building

The Henry W. Oliver Building

At a height of 25 stories, the Henry W. Oliver building at 535 Smithfield Street is not the tallest building in downtown Pittsburgh.  Nor is it the oldest building in the city, but with its neoclassical style, impressive stone columns, and grand lobby, it would be difficult to find a more beautiful one in the city. Designed by renowned architect Daniel Burnham, who also designed

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Pittsburgh’s Heart: Point State Park

Pittsburgh’s Heart: Point State Park

Point State Park is the heart of Pittsburgh. Not only is it where the three rivers meet, but it is also where our city’s history meets with the Pittsburgh of today. The Revolutionary Period William Trent established the area we know as Pittsburgh and the Point in the 1740s. As a fur trader, Trent set up a trading post on the land. In 1753, a

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History of Pittsburgh’s Hospitals

History of Pittsburgh’s Hospitals

Pittsburgh is known as a health care hub with numerous first-class medical facilities. Many of them have a long history in our region. Popular Pittsburgh has looked back in time to find the roots of some of our finest hospitals. Allegheny General Hospital Allegheny General Hospital began before that area of the North Side where it is located became part of the City of Pittsburgh.

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Philip Johnson: Controversial Architect of PPG Place

Philip Johnson: Controversial Architect of PPG Place

Architect Philip Johnson and his partner Burgee designed PPG Place. While undeniably a gifted architect, he was also at one time an anti-Semite and Nazi sympathizer. Johnson was born into wealth in Cleveland on July 8, 1906, to lawyer Homer Johnson and Louisa Osborne Pope.  He was educated at the prestigious Hackley School in Tarrytown, New York  and studied at Harvard. With a fortune acquired

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PPG Place: Pittsburgh’s Most Beautiful Building?

PPG Place: Pittsburgh’s Most Beautiful Building?

While the design harkens back to other historic structures, the buildings at PPG Place are like no others in the world. The six-building complex combines Gothic architecture with modern materials and the urban skyscraper with a fairytale castle. PPG PPG, founded as Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company in 1883 by Capt. John B. Ford and John Pitcairn, opened the nation’s first successful plate glass factory in

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The Uncertain Fate of The Abrams House

The Uncertain Fate of The Abrams House

Tucked away off Woodland Drive near Chatham University, a wonderfully eclectic residence remains one of Pittsburgh’s crown jewels of unorthodox architecture. The Abrams House, as it is affectionately called, is the work of Pritzker Architecture Prize-Winner Robert Venturi and Denise Scott Brown. The house oozes of postmodern style and is a testament to the curated, quirky style of late owner Betty Abrams. And while this

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Harbison-Walker: The Pittsburgh Company that Helped to Construct the Steel Industry

Harbison-Walker: The Pittsburgh Company that Helped to Construct the Steel Industry

There is a saying: a rising tide lifts all boats. That certainly applies to Harbison-Walker International. Founded in Pittsburgh, Harbison-Walker’s refractories and its success enabled Andrew Carnegie to build his steel mills and establish Pittsburgh as the economic powerhouse known as Steel City. The company was founded in 1864 by J. K. Lemon and ten other Allegheny County residents. It was originally called the Star

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