ByCityLight.com - Home

Pittsburgh - City History and Historical Figures Pittsburgh - City Facts Pittsburgh - City Attractions Pittsburgh - City Lodging Pittsburgh - City Dining Pittsburgh - City Events Pittsburgh - City Links Pennsylvania Information
Colleges In Pittsburgh

City Maps/Weather



Features and Fun City Facts
Fun City Facts
The Rockville Bridge, the longest stone arch bridge in the world, is in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.

A marker on the 13th step of the Colorado capital building in Denver, Colorado is precisely 1 mile above sea level.
Features and Fun City Facts


Browse For a City Search For a City Get Listed on ByCityLight.com Who we are and what we do. Contact Information Welcome to ByCityLight.com, Your Tour Guide To The Cities You Love

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Click for Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Forecast

City History
Historic People


City History

Fur traders arrived here in the late 1700's and later a post was built by French soldiers in 1749, they were sent to claim the land where Pittsburgh now sits today. The French wanted to secure a water route from Canada to New Orleans; however the English also held claim to the area, and British soldiers ordered the French to leave in 1853. After Fort Prince George was built by the British, the French soldiers returned in 1854 and forced the British to abandon the fort. The French then proceeded to build Fort Duquesne, and these events led to the French and Indian war. France finally surrendered their fort in 1858. Later, Fort Pitt was built and named after Secretary of State William Pitt the Elder. A village soon arose around the fort was called "Pittsbourough" at the cities incorporation in 1861 the name was shortened to Pittsburgh.

Riverboat building became the cities first industry, aiding in western expansion. Tragically though, a fire destroyed most of the city in 1845. The recovery was in full swing by the start of the Civil War and Pittsburgh became an industrial complex that began manufacturing weapons and ammunition for the war. Quite an impact in the coal industry sparked, because the factories were consuming mass amounts of coal for manufacturing. Andrew Carnegie built the first of the steel mills here in 1875, and half the steel produced came from Pittsburgh in the 1920's. During World War II 95 Million tons of steel was produced here, which played a vital roll in the war effort.

The downside to this vibrant industrial economy was air pollution. In the 1950's the Renaissance Project was initiated, with the emphasis of the project to clean the air and revitalize the city. Then in the late 1960's and early 1970's Renaissance Project II was launched to promote the unique culture and neighborhood's of the city. Then steel production imploded in the 1980's, factories closed and mass unemployment shrank the population in half.

The cities economic base then changed to tourism, technology (such as robotics), health care and medical research. For example Jonas Salk developed the Polio vaccine at the University of Pittsburgh in the 1950's, and soon after Dr. Thomas Starke pioneered the field of organ transplants also out of Pittsburgh. These fine accomplishments are only a few of many that sparked the cities reputation as a premier medical research community, and paved the way for yet another industrial age.

Historic Figures

Jonas Edward Salk (1914 –1995)



Jonas Edward Salk (1914 –1995)
Jonas Edward Salk was an American physician and researcher best known for the development of the first successful polio vaccine. During his life he worked in New York, Michigan, Pittsburgh and California. In his later career, Salk devoted much energy toward the development of an AIDS vaccine. Salk did not seek wealth or fame through his innovations, famously stating, "Who owns my polio vaccine? The people! Could you patent the sun?"

September 19, 2014

browse cities | search | get listed | spotlight | about us | contact us | policies | partners

Copyright ©2014 www.ByCityLight.com - Page Design by Erik Schubach and Tristan Chambers