2020 Winter

Pittsburgh Quarterly Archives

2020 Winter

Pretty in Peat

The Machrie Hotel sits on grass-​covered peat fields, a low-​slung array of modern buildings that sprawl across the landscape like an apparition. Just completed last year, the newest addition to the Campbell Gray luxury hotel chain is on the Isle of Islay, home to some of the best scotches in…

Skibo Castle: Andrew Carnegie’s Extraordinary Estate

Turning into the long drive that leads to Skibo Castle, one can imagine what it was like for Andrew Carnegie to arrive at his Scottish home back in 1899.That was the year he purchased the estate, hoping his young daughter Margaret would grow to love his homeland. In this, the…

Barker, Jarzebowski, Henderson, Mustain, Breese, Interiano

Elizabeth E. Barker is the executive director of The Frick Pittsburgh and the first woman to lead the institution. Her appointment begins in December. She comes to Pittsburgh from Belmont, Mass., where she was the director of the Boston Athenaeum, an independent library, exhibition center and cultural venue founded in…

An Answer from Abroad

If southwestern Pennsylvania is going to pull out of its long population slump, it’s likely going to happen with people like Khara Timsina. He arrived in Pittsburgh 10 years ago, one of fewer than 300 Bhutanese refugees resettled from camps in Nepal, where they had lived after being driven from…

Snow Birds Fly Away — to Pittsburgh

When we hear of snow birds this time of year, the first thing that comes to mind is probably grandparents in Florida. “At least,” we think to ourselves, “they have the good sense to fly somewhere warm.”

The Economics of Population

Last spring, the U.S. Census Bureau released data showing that the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County once again lost population. In what has become a ritual, public officials were pressed by reporters to respond. County Executive Rich Fitzgerald suggested not reading too much into the latest of a long…

Bridging Ayn Rand and Pittsburgh

While conducting research for “Atlas Shrugged” during a cross-​country train trip in 1947, Ayn Rand wrote in her journal what she saw when she came upon Pittsburgh while traveling east:

The Flavors of Pittsburgh

The Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Every Pittsburgher knows these holidays and celebrations. But less familiar are the many religious and secular holidays celebrated by ethnic communities in the region. Photographer Teake Zuidema documents five festivities that took place this year.

Fisher, Roseman, Ziegler, Stein, Roderick, Hillenbrand, Pessolano, Booth

Dr. Bernard Fisher, 101: Dr. Fisher was a giant in the field of breast cancer, leading large-​scale randomized clinical trials that revolutionized understanding and treatment of the illness. His earlier surgical work included performing the first kidney transplant in Pittsburgh and doing pivotal work that cleared the way for future…

Trying to Save a Horse

There have been phone calls in my life I wish I’d never received. I was cold and wet from swimming in an Irish lake when I returned to the house to see my husband standing in the driveway. Waiting for me. That wasn’t normal. My father had called. My mother…

Is it Really Better to Give than to Receive?

Dr. Gary Swanson has been the recipient of two gifts given in his honor: a goat donated to a family in Africa and trees planted along the streets of Detroit. As someone who likes goats and hails from Detroit, he appreciates the thoughtfulness behind these gifts. But, research shows it…

Nuts About Nutcrackers

When Steubenville comes to mind, you probably don’t think of the Rust Belt town as a travel destination. Mayor Jerry Barilla has been intent on changing that and the narrative of industrial decline that has dominated the town. Its population of 18,000 is less than half what it was in…

Andy Warhol Returns to Pittsburgh

On an autumn evening in Pittsburgh 40 years ago, a larger than usual, fancier than typical, and more expensive than ever event was staged as an acquisition benefit for the Carnegie Museum of Art. On this special Saturday night, 250 formally dressed ladies and gentlemen entered the Heinz Galleries to…

Pathway to Pain

I’ve always been enchanted by the idea of a days-​long hike — to head off into the woods with nothing but a pack and the possibility of adventure, much like Bill Bryson in my favorite book, “A Walk in the Woods.” But with two kids and crazy soccer schedules, I really can’t…

The Urban Deerhunter

Every July, along deer trails in pockets of forest in and around the city of Pittsburgh, Dan Krivanek and his buddies hang a bevy of camouflaged infrared LED hunting cameras in the crooks of trees. They also strew cut up apples and feed corn. Then, back in his Bridgeville borough…
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