Category: Around Pittsburgh

Category: Around Pittsburgh

A Portrait of Middle-Class Family Life: The Spencers of Pittsburgh’s Shadyside

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A Portrait of Middle-Class Family Life: The Spencers of Pittsburgh’s Shadyside

Ethel Spencer, the third daughter of the seven Spencer children born between 1884 and 1895, was a curious and observant child. She wrote her childhood memoir in 1959 while she was professor at Carnegie Tech (today’s Carnegie Mellon University). It served as a memento of the joy-filled years she shared with her brothers and sisters in Pittsburgh’s affluent Shadyside neighborhood. The Spencers of Amberson Avenue, later published by the University of Pittsburgh Press in 1983, explores the family of Charles Hart Spencer, an employee of Henry Clay Frick, and his wife Mary Acheson from the viewpoint of young Ethel. Through the eyes of Ethel, the reader is…

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<em>Johnstown Girls</em> and <em>Blues Walked In</em> author Kathleen George on Lena Horne, Pittsburgh as setting, and her research process

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Johnstown Girls and Blues Walked In author Kathleen George on Lena Horne, Pittsburgh as setting, and her research process

Pittsburgh is more than just a home for author Kathleen George: the city and its people are a source of inspiration. A native of Johnstown, George has lived in the city for many years, teaches theatre arts and creative writing at the University of Pittsburgh, and has written several novels and short stories based in the Pittsburgh region, including The Johnstown Girls. Her latest, The Blues Walked In, is a period fiction novel set against the backdrop of Pittsburgh’s once-bustling Hill District. It’s 1936, and a nineteen year-old Lena Horne is walking to her father’s hotel in the Hill after a long tour with Nobel Sissel’s orchestra. Along the…

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Patricia M. DeMarco discusses global sustainability at the Phipps Conservatory

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Patricia M. DeMarco discusses global sustainability at the Phipps Conservatory

On September 19th, the University of Pittsburgh Press and author Patricia M. DeMarco celebrated the publication of her book Pathways to Our Sustainable Future: A Global Perspective from Pittsburgh. An enthusiastic crowd of about 100 filled the Tropical Forest area of Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Oakland. Attendees included Max King, President and CEO of The Pittsburgh Foundation and his wife Peggy, David Feingold, President of Chatham University, Bernard Goldstein, former Dean of the Pitt Graduate School of Public Health and Member of the National Academy of Sciences and his wife Rossalyn, Terry Collins, Theresa Heinz Professor of Green…

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The Slide and Chuck Noll: A Win for Any Pittsburgh Dad

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The Slide and Chuck Noll: A Win for Any Pittsburgh Dad

This Father’s Day let dad brush up on his Pittsburgh sports history with The Slide: Leyland, Bonds, and the Star-Crossed Pittsburgh Pirates by father-son writing duo Richard and Stephen Peterson and Chuck Noll: His Life’s Work by Michael MacCambridge. The Petersons trace Pirates baseball history from the 1970s to today, including the twenty-year bump along the road. MacCambridge gives life to the man who brought the Pittsburgh Steelers to the forefront of the National Football League, but removed himself from the spotlight. This is the first comprehensive biography of Chuck Noll.  With both books, you get a newfound understanding of the…

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The Ten Most Captivating Butterflies in Pennsylvania

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The Ten Most Captivating Butterflies in Pennsylvania

In a comprehensive guide, Butterflies of Pennsylvania: a field guide by James L. Monroe and David M. Wright, the butterflies that traverse the state are described in stunning detail, with over 900 color photos to complement them.  Here is a selection of ten out of the one hundred and eighty-six species that make up Pennsylvania’s unique butterfly population. Zebra Swallowtail So aptly named for the mammal that it resembles, male Zebra Swallowtails puddle, or rest in sandy or gravely areas to absorb salts and amino acids, which aid in their reproduction. Diana Fritillary The Diana Fritillary is incredibly rare, and…

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