2009 Fall

Pittsburgh Quarterly Archives

2009 Fall

Why Pittsburgh?

When it was announced that the G-​20 summit would be held in Pittsburgh, some in the national press corps chuckled; others raised their brows. It’s the first time the summit has not been held in a capital city. Why?

The End of Smallpox

There are a lot of reasons why people believe Dr. D.A. Henderson was the best person to lead the successful effort to eradicate smallpox from the planet in the 1960s and 1970s. Usually they revolve around his intellect (unquestionably world class), his training (schooled in “shoe leather epidemiology” by his…

Energy & Pittsburgh

Beginning in this issue and then picking up steam over the next three, Pittsburgh Quarterly is publishing a series examining Pittsburgh’s contributions to and potential in the realm of energy.

Personal Investment

As a Pittsburgh police commander, Gwen Elliott knew the struggles of girls in the city’s toughest neighborhoods. When she retired in 2002, she founded Gwen’s Girls, a nonprofit that would look out for them. But from the beginning, Elliott knew it needed to grow.

The Ruffed Grouse

Imagine a bird like a chicken, but a little sleeker, a little more wild. Rufous, gray, with a tail that is barred with black and white stripes at the tips. When the tail pops open in a half circle, it resembles an earth-​tone parasol. What’s most visually arresting about the…

Mays, Kelly, Scalo, Bennington, Connelly, Byron

Billy Mays, 50 Billy Mays was the consummate pitchman, famous to television watchers across the continent for his booming voice, black beard and persuasive infomercials. He believed in his products, such as OxyClean and Mighty Putty, and it showed. The McKees Rocks native got started on the career path…

Eins, Zwei, G’suffa!

by Barbara Eichenlaub
Turning leaves are a sure harbinger of Oktoberfest! If you can’t make it to Germany, several local options may do. Grab your designated driver and hit the road for a tour of western Pennsylvania’s microbreweries, each of which offers a twist on the annual tradition.

Thelma Williams Lovette, Social Worker and Community Leader

by Jeff Sewald
I was born in Pittsburgh on Feb. 28, 1916, the fifth of 11 children. My family and I lived at 1520 Wylie Ave. in the Hill District. And we all looked out for each other. In 1925, when I was just a girl, Mama and Papa took us to the…

From the Publisher, Fall 2009

2009 has been a trying year for media organizations across the country. Several local magazines have folded; Pittsburgh magazine has been sold to a Colorado company.

Of Untimely Corpses

by Sandra Levis
Surely one of our region’s most colorful anomalies is the phenomenon of a celebrity coroner. Where else but in Pittsburgh would proximity to corpses carry such cachet? Of course, these corpses are media sensations, and the high-​profile pathologist who enjoys their reflected glory is rather sensational himself.

The Pittsburgh Penguins & WQED

As America’s first public television station, WQED has a storied history. Unfortunately, it’s not living up to that legacy.
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