2009 Spring

Pittsburgh Quarterly Archives

2009 Spring

Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Last chapter: Spring ’09

Dock Ellis, 63 One of baseball’s most colorful, controversial and bizarre figures, Ellis was a Pittsburgh Pirates star, who once pitched a no-​hitter on LSD. In an era of social upheaval, Ellis was branded a militant by the media because of his vocal advocacy for racial equality. His 1970 no-​hitter…
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Henry Clay Frick: Blood Pact

Among the great fortunes of Pittsburgh’s Golden Age (18701910), that of Henry Clay Frick stands third, bested only by Andrew Carnegie and the Mellons. But the extraordinary aspect of the Frick fortune was not its size. Carnegie, Heinz, Mellon and Westinghouse were all entrepreneurs who exercised ultimate control in their…
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Reconsider the riesling

Here’s a little test to see who’s as old as I am, and who will ’fess up to once drinking wines that might get you laughed out of a fancy restaurant today.
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Pittsburgh’s college corridor

What conjures an image of fun and vitality more than the phrase “college town”? And especially clear in an economy like the present one, what industry offers more stability in roiling financial seas than a solid stable of universities? Western Pennsylvania is home to dozens.
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Strategy in the ivory tower

The wrecking ball that has moved through the U.S. economy, taking down investment banks, fitness chains and donut shops, is threatening a group of institutions not usually mentioned on the nightly business report.
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Planetary Hollywood

First the lights dim. In the darkness, you feel the intense drumbeat and techno-​pop rhythms of the synthesizer pounding deep in your gut. Next a fiery, red globe materializes above you like a cosmic disco ball of galactic proportions. Look left and a futuristic spacecraft emerges from the solar system…
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Steel City Jews

Kudos to historian Barbara Burstin for producing “Steel City Jews: A History of Pittsburgh and its Jewish Community, 18401915.” For 10 years the author toiled alone, without a publisher, to create a labor of love that relates the early history of our city in the context of the Jewish experience.
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Major player

The wiper blades arched back and forth against the SUV’s windshield, sweeping away an icy rain. Over the narrow, cobblestone streets and vacant, littered lots of the Hill District, DeJuan Blair drove his grandmother’s Buick Rendezvous.
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Nemacolin Woodlands

The bear market might have you reconsidering a spring-​break trip to Vail or Aruba, and you might forgo that trip just to avoid the painful wait at the airport. In less time than you have to wait for a plane, you could drive to the perfect getaway — Nemacolin Woodlands Resort and…
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

All the comforts of home — and then some

In January, The Pennsylvania Board of Education’s Higher Education Council tossed out this idea for a new kind of institution of higher learning: A no-​frills, low-​cost college where kids could earn a bachelor’s degree sans the on-​campus fitness centers, climbing walls, as-​comfy-​as-​home dorm rooms and other expensive amenities found on…
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Stocks & pedestal — Spring 2009

The Pittsburgh Steelers: Here we go. In a season when both the landscape and the economy have been frozen and dreary, life in Pittsburgh has been full of excitement and expectation, thanks to the Steelers. So up on the pedestal they go for lighting a bonfire of Pittsburgh spirit and…
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Jack Perkowski

by Jeff Sewald
Like so many others in the Pittsburgh area, my grandparents on both sides emigrated from Poland to the United States in the early part of the 20th century. Think about the journey they made.
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Nap’s

This Napoleon and Josephine story has a happy ending. It began in 1952, just two blocks from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania campus, when Napoleon and Josephine Patti opened Nap’s, a shot-​and-​beer joint along the main drag of the small town.
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

Publisher’s letter — Spring 2009

My 17-​year-​old daughter wanted to go to the inauguration, and we went back and forth about it. There were plenty of reasons not to. The crowd was expected to be 24 million, and people had been asked to stay home. I’d been in a densely packed crowd once before, where…
Pittsburgh Quarterly Exclusive

The strange world of elevens

The orderly’s name was Rich. He’d come to fill my mother’s water pitcher. Rich had eyebrows like steel wool and eyes that seemed focused anywhere but here.
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