George H. (George Henry) Thurston.

Allegheny county's hundred years online

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H. H. Byram as editor. In Decern er. 1883, the Chronicle was merg in the
Telegraph and a stock company was formed under the style of the Pik dburgh
Chronicle Telegraph Company; H. H. Byram continuing editor, and Eob't H.
Campe being manager and treasurer. The paper in its editorial conduct is what
may be termed independent Kepublican, and in its general tone, refined, literary
and progressional.

In 1884 the Telegraph absorbed the Chronicle^ whose history has previously
been given.

The latest daily journals in the fi^eld for public favor of Pittsburgh are the

Pittsburgh Times and Evening Penny Press. The Times was established in by

Robert P. Nevin as a morning paper, although under his Hitorship a spirited
journal, independent in its tone and spirited in its editoria^Vit did iiou achieve
success, however, much it deserved it. On it passed int . the owner-
ship of The Times Publishing Company, when it was issued as a pei ny morning
paper. C. D. Brigham, in former years proprietor and editor of the Commercial,
took editorial charge of its columns. Compact in its articles, terse in its editorial
diction, and comprehensive in its matter, it has achieved success, and is a willing
and able advocate of the Republican party.

The Evening Penny Press was established in by the Penny Press Publish-
ing Company. It is in an eight page quarto sheet and Republican in its general
policy, although given to independent editorials where its views conflict with "rings
and party edicts." It has become one of the popular sheets of the city, and ably
conducted has won success. These papers of latter origin being of but few years,
their history is necessarily brief.

Among the weeklies of the day is the Sunday Globe, the first number of which
was issued June 4th, 1876, J. W. Breen editor and proprietor, and has been a suc-
cess being now in its twelfth year.

The East End PuUitin, established in by John Black, occupies a field all

its own. Under the editorship of Fred Muller, it is not only a brilliant society
journal of a higher class but a clever literary sheet. Mr. Black, who begun his
journalistic career as an occasional reporter on the daily papers, started the publi-
cation as a small semi-local society news and advertisement sheet in the East End
of the city. Its standing, typographical appearance, and literary merit tells the
story of the business ability, perseverance, and publishing tact which has pushed
the journal to success.

The East End News another new comer in the same field is making vigorous
strides in the race.

The Labor Tribune is a journal devoted to the advocacy of the Labor Reform

party. Established in by Thos. A. Armstrong and Thos. Telford, and 'has

done brave battle for its cause.

The Alleghenian, published and edited by John B. Kennedy in Allegheny city,
is the representative in that city of what the Bulletin is in Pittsburgh. The name
is one that originated under a previous publication of several years since by Mr.


Kennedy and his brother, now dead. Mr. Kennedy's connection with journalism
began with his duties as a carrier boy on the Evening Gazette in July, 1833. He
was afterwards connected with other publications, and was associate editor of the
Commercial Journal of 1863. His long career in publication and the ripened
editorial judgment shows in the conducting of the Alleghenian.

These journals are the more representative journals of Allegheny county's press
of to-day. A mention of all the publications must, as in the case of many other busi-
ness interests of the county, be foregone. It has not been possible in this volume
to tell of all that makes up the county's industry. The pages have already far
overrun those contemplated in the constant temptation to tell of one more interest
or branch of industry. Much as has been told, enough remains unmentioned to
fill, if but even tersely expressed, another volume, and with the press as with other
matters, necessity, not inclination, dictates the course. Enough has been said,,
however, to show that the " fourth estate " has kept pace with the progress in alL
other interest in Allegheny county's hundred years.


If the spirit of Guttenberg and his associates could flit through the printing
houses of the world to-day and witness not only the wonderful presses and unique
fonts of type, but the typographical beauty of the work done, they would stand
amazed at what had resulted from their wooden type and rude press. In that
progress Allegheny county has kept pace, and in the growth of other branches of
business moved abreast with them. There are to-day in Allegheny City and.
Pittsburgh alone 74 printing houses. To give the history of them all can-
not be done, but to connect the past with the present in this industry, as has been
done in others, a brief genealogical paragraph is indulged in, in that it, with the-
printing of newspapers, dates back to the hundred years of the county's existence..

Cramer's Almanack, from which quotations have several times been made in
these pages, was the work of one of the "printing offices" of that date, and of
which a direct successor is to-day famous elsewhere than in Pittsburgh for it&
beautiful typographical work.

Zadoc Cramer was in business in this city in 1801. He was succeeded by
Cramer & Speer and Cramer, Speer & Eichbaum ; then William Eichbaum ; in
the following year, 1816, by Eichbaum & Johnston, continuing in business until
succeeded by Johnston & Stockton in 1824. Mr. Eichbaum retiring, except sck
far as their paper mill at Fallston, Beaver county, was concerned, together with
an extensive real estate interest there and in New Brighton. He remained a co-
partner in these until some time in the '50s. Samuel K. Johnston, of the firm of
Johnston & Stockton, was the father of S. Eeed Johnston. William Eichbaum.
was the father of Joseph Eichbaum, of the present firm of Jos. Eichbaum & Co.
In 1850 Mr. W. S. Haven succeeded Johnston & Stockton, and after several
changes in the firm name the plant was vested in W. W. Lewis & Co., from whom
Jos. Eichbaum & Co. purchased in 1881, thus making them the actual successors-
of Zadoc Cramer, of 1801.


Another printing house which has a direct connection with the fathers of the
art in Allegheny county is that of A. A. Anderson & Son, which is the direct suc-
cessor of the office of Butler & Lamdin of 1810- The material of this office was
brought across the mountains on pack mules, and an old Ramage press, which was
part of the outfit of the office, was sometime since in existence in Butler county,
and possibly so still, it having been sold by A. A. Anderson some time after he
succeeded to the outfit, a part of which was in the office of A. A. Anderson & Son.
In 1825, Mr. Landin having died, Mr. Butler removed to Ravenna, Ohio. A. A.
Anderson began his apprenticeship under Mr. Butler on the 8th day of August,
1825. Mr. Butler came back to Pittsburgh in 1827, and Mr. Anderson accom-
panied him, and followed the business as boy, journeyman and proprietor sixty-
three years until his death, on May 18th, 1888, at the age of 78. He was at the
time of his death the oldest job printer in the city, and his office in its succession
from Landin & Butler could claim over seventy-five years of age. Mr. Anderson
was a veteran in the profession as well as in years ; a man of unexceptional purity
of life and honesty of purpose, unobtrusive in his habits and retiring in his busi-
ness habits. He was not widely known personally. Envious of no man's good
fortune, he was remarkable in that his more intimate associates never heard him
reflect upon the purpose or actions of others, nor make use of vulgar or profane
language. He was one of those rare characters that blossom unknown, but leave
behind a memory fragrant with virtues. Since Mr. Anderson's death the succes-
session to the firm continues in his sons, who are thus, with the exception of Jos.
Eichbaum & Co., the oldest printing house in the city.

These two firms are the representatives of the early printing offices of the
county, and as such are noted.


Music, Art, and Benevolent Institutions.

From a wilderness to a community of five hundred thousand inhabitants, with
all the surroundings of modern civilization in its most advanced form, is a long
stride of progress. Music, art and architecture always keep step in the progress
of civilization in its advances, and in the progress of Allegheny county from a
wilderness to a community of five hundred thousand inhabitants there was no ex-
ception to the rule.

Music seems, from the earlier records, to have been quite in advance of the
usual standard of frontier towns an hundred years ago. This is probably the
result of not only the regimental bands attached to the troops garrisoned at Fort
Duquesne, but to the wives and daughters of the officers of the regiments of
English troops stationed at Fort Pitt, who, with their fathers and husbands, had
received an education in Europe, and would enliven the monotony of a garrison
town with concerts and their musical entertainments. This would naturally culti-
vate a musical taste in the settlers, and the records of eighty years since show that



it was enougli to encourage the establishment at Pittsburgh, in 1812-14, of
a piano factory ; Charles Rosenbaum at that date advertising in the Gazette
pianos of his own make for from |250 to $350 each, and offering to contract for
the construction of grand pianos.

In 1811 Francis Masi advertises a concert, and in 1812 Mr. Webster a concert
of choice musical selections.

In 1817 H. G. Pius " begs to announce that he will give lessons on piano,
violin and guitar."

In 1819 a concert for a charity relief fund is advertised to be given at the
First Presbyterian Church by a juvenile choir. From about this date concerts as
a fashionable amusement and teachers of music rapidly increased. William
Stanton, organist of Trinity Church, advertises in 1824 to give lessons on piano
and organ at $8 a quarter, three lessons a week. About this time Wm. Evans, an
Englishman, a plane-maker by trade, but a great enthusiast in music, and also a
composer, came to Pittsburgh, and in 1826 advertises to give lessons at $6 a
quarter in singing. He was an active little body, odd in his costumes and noted
for other peculiarities. He followed the making of planes, but also taught music,
and organized several of the church choirs of the city. He mentions in his
journal, which he kept quite fully but tersely, that he had assisted the Catholic
Church in forming its first choir.

At about this period, from 1826 to 1830, the modern music store made its debut
at Pittsburgh, although instruments and music had been dealt in as part of the
stock of the general stores of that earlier date. About 1829, W. C. Peters, who
had been a band master in the English army, and came to Pittsburgh from Canada,
opened a music store on Fifth avenue, in 1831, at or near what is now No, 33. He
associated with him W. T>, Smith and John H. Mellor under the firm style of
Smith, Peters & Co. The firm subsequently became Smith & Mellor, Mr. Peters
going to Louisville. Afterward the firm style was John H. Mellor & Co. and in
1844, John H. Mellor alone. In 1863, on his death, his son succeeded him in the
business. (C. C. Mellor.) And subsequently associating with him H. H. Hoene
the firm style became Mellor & Hoene, the present firm, whose lineage runs back
for nearly sixty years in direct succession.

In 1832 Henry Kleber came to Pittsburgh when quite a boy and has exerted
a large influence on the progress of musical education in Allegheny county. He
began teaching music, in 1837, at a private school kept by Mr. Lacy where St.
Pauls Episcopal Church now stands. The location was for many years called,
locally, Lacyville. The school was afterward broken up by the elopement of one
of the young lady boarders. Later Mr. Kleber taught at a school of a Mrs. Hal-
stead, at what is now Superior station, on the P. F. W. & C. railroad, and subse-
quently began giving private lessons as a profession. While thus engaged
he helped organize a musical society of the members of the first families of the
town who frequently gave concerts in aid of charitable objects. He also helped
organize the brass band of the Duquesne Greys, said to be the first band in Alle-
gheny county.


In 1839-40 Mr. Kleber opened a piano salesrooms at 103 Third avenue, and
subsequently associated with him his brother Augustus, under the firm style of H.
Kleber & Bro., which has so remained for over forty years.

The genealogy of these two firms connect the past and the present, covering, as
they do, a period of sixty years, while from Wm. Evans and Charles Eosenbaum,
with his piano factory of 1812, the whole period of the hundred years of Alle-
gheny county's musical progress is nearly covered.

In music, so in art. Of the early artists, if such there were who were native
to the locality, they have left no impress on the times, either by works or in mem-
ories. Among the older features are family portraits, but they are the work of
occasional artists, either imported from the East to do a special portrait, or on an
accidental tour, staying in Pittsburgh awhile to pick up a few dollars with a "pot

About 1839-40, or perhaps a little earlier, native artists began to show them-
selves, although the "painter of pictures" for a livelihood did not rank as high in
the estimation of the business men of that date as the painter of signs and doors
and window panes, and the "struggling artist," to use a common phrase, struggled
greatly. At about this time Blythe began painting his humorous pictures.
Crude in design and execution, they were forcible in conception, and indicated
that Allegheny county under more happy circumstances might have had the
honor of a Hogarth, but one day "poor Blythe" was found dead in his studio,
under circumstances that awakened suspicions that slow starvation hastened his
end. Examples of his painting are now among the treasures of private collections.
Along in the 40's came W. S. Wall, noted for the nice detail in the rendering of
landscapes. After him, and in part contemporaneous, came A. S. Wall, whose
work is characterized by boldness of touch, vigor of color, and broad artistic
effect that makes it at all times a subject of regret that he should have abandoned
the "pallette and brush" for commercial pursuits. In the same year Hetzel came
upon the art stage, notable from his first eflTorts for the tender feeling for nature
and its spring and summer landscapes, delighting to portray woodland nooks and
rocky forest streams. Also Jasper Lawman, with his Taried genius for portraiture
and landscape, conscientious in his rendering and successful in representation;
and likewise Dalbey, in his specialty of portraits; also "Johns," notable for his
vigorous treatment of animal subjects. And Woodwell, who, clinging to commer-
cial pursuits, gives but half heart to the art wherein he shows great talent.

Thus from decade to decade the artists and art education increased until, in
1888, there are some twenty native artists in Pittsburgh, all of whom are more or
less famous in their specialties. With their work grew an increasing love for art
in the city and county, which led to the establishment of the Pittsburgh School of
Design by Wm. Thaw, Chas. S. Clark, Henry Phipps, and other public spirited citi-
zens, from which has graduated some notable artists of both men and women, and
done much to cultivate an artistic taste in the community,^ With the growth of
that, a distinct branch of_ business known as art stores, dealing in paintings.


artistic furniture, and similar goods, originated. Among the earliest of these was
that of J. J. Gillespie, who began business in the manufacture of looking glasses,
and in 1838 the firm was Gillespie & Kennedy. It subsequently became J. J.
Gillespie & Co., (A. C. McCallum, A. S. Wall,) Mr. Gillespie dying in 1887. He
gradually turned his attention to art goods as the demand increased, until at present
the establishment is almost entirely an " art store," the original foundation of the
business, mirrors, or "looking glasses" as they were in more primitive days called?
being still a branch of the business. Samuel Boyd also, in 1865, established
a looking glass manufactury which, under the same progress in art, became an ar*
store, and is now carried on under the firm style of S. Boyd & Co. The influence
of this gradual art education has shown itself not only in the paintings that
occupy wall space in private galleries and parlors, but in the greater artistic style
of the interior adornment of homes. In the architectural designs of buildings
this art education is apparent. The contrast between the public buildings, homes,
and business edifices, and those of even thirty years since, not to go back to the
beginning of the century, is wonderful. Especially is it so in buildings for business

Time was when, even but twenty years since, that a four story building was
thought imposing and its builders enterprising. To-day seven, eight and even
ten-story edifices for business uses are a common feature on the business streets of
Pittsburgh. The Hamilton building on Fifth avenue is a notable example in that
as being the first of its height to be erected, it is also from its tall tower a resort
for strangers who wish to obtain a view of the city. The new Court House, the
Carnegie Library in Allegheny city, the Westinghouse offices, the Penn building,
the Lewis block, and a dozen others mark the progress from the little squat two
and three- story "stores" of fifty years since.

Music, art and architecture has gone hand in hand with the advance in wealth,
manufacturing importance, and all other things in Allegheny county. To give a
detailed account of this art progress would occupy chapters that might be filled
with interesting reminisences, but, as in the other divisions of this sketch of Alle-
gheny county's hundred years, inclination must yield to necessity. Enough has
been stated to form a swiftly passing panorama of the progress of the county in
music, art and architecture, from a rude frontier village to the great community it
now is.

Benevolent Societies.
Records show nothing in the very early years of the county of benevolent in-
stitutions if they existed. There were then, no doubt, as now the blind and the
halt, poor souls, who needed refuge, homeless orphans, and those who needed the
skilled nursing, tender care and practiced surgery of hospitals ; but while tender
hearts beat then, liberal hands gave, charities were bestowed and benevolence ex-
ercised, the county was too young for that evolution of advancing civilization that
organizes charities and benevolent institutions. With all things else in the history
of the county its day came.


In 1832 a meeting was held in the First Presbyterian Church, on the 17th of
April, to organize an effort to establish an orphan asylum, of which mention is
made in the general history of the county. From that time benevolent institu-
tions and hospitals have multiplied, until there are fifty-two in Pittsburgh and
Allegheny, not to mention the' societies connected with the various churches,
the result of fifty years' work. The records of their organization and final estab-
lishment show that they are chiefly the work of the women of the county. They
have been the result of mite contributions, of the unpleasant work of soliciting
subscriptions, of fairs and concerts, and frequently of the generous sums of yearly
contributions and large special donations.

The Home for Incurables owes its building and endowment to the generosity
of the late Miss Jane Holmes, and the Home for Aged Women and Aged Protest-
ant Couples, at Wilkinsburg, are largely the results of her benefactions.

The Home for the Friendless was organized May 1st, 1861 ; Allegheny Ladies'
Tract -Society, 1843; Allegheny Belief Society, 1848; St. Josephs Orphan Asy-
lum, 1853; Widows' Home and Tenant House, 1866; Ladies' Association of the
Homeopathic Hospital, 1866; Temporary Home for Destitute, 1869; Women's
Christian Association, 1869; Home for Aged Protestant Women, 1871; Christian
Home for Women, 1872; Home of the Good Shepherd, 1872; St. Francis Hos-
pital, Roman Catholic Orphan Asylum, St. Michael's German Catholic Orphan
Asylum, Episcopal Church Home, Women's Christian Temperance Union, 3874;
Home for Aged Protestant Couples, about 1880 ; Women's Christian Association
of East Liberty, Children's Temporary Home and Nursery, Children's Country
Home, 1881; Women's Fruit and Flower Association for Hospitals, Pittsburgh
and Allegheny Orphan Asylum, 1832 ; Home of the Little Sisters, Society for
the Improvement of the Poor, 1875 ; Home for Aged Colored Women, 1884 ;
Home for Incurables, 1886.

These more prominent institutions and associations under the charge of the
women of Allegheny county indicate its progress, and the work of the mothers,
sisters and daughters of the men who have been building up the industrial estab-
lishments. The Roman Catholic institutions are cared for largely by the different
Sisterhoods, while the Protestant ones by the women of all denominations, work-
ing to a common end in harmony. Some paragraphs could be justly indulged in
to tell of the generosity of these women, the self-sacrifice and the years of exer-
tion to place all of them in the effective condition they now are, but to mention a
few would require the mention of all, for there are none of the members of the
various boards and their officers that have not borne their share in the work.
Chiefly and, in fact, almost entirely managed by a board of women, the result
shows their efficiency.

Nor have the men of the county been laggard in the work of benevolence.
The Homoeopathic Hospital, the Western Pennsylvania Hospital, the Mercy
Hospital, the Pittsburgh Infirmary, the Allegheny Prison Society, the Pennsyl-
vania Institute for the Deaf and Dumb, the Pennsylvania Reform School, the


Allegheny County Inebriate Asylum, the Young Men's Christian Association, all
tell their story of time taken from the absorbing demands of business in a county
where the rate of progress of all business has been such as to leave few or no
hours for the organizing and establishing of benevolent or reformatory institutions.

If Allegheny county has reason to be proud of her mechanics, manufacturers
and business men laboring in its industrial fields, it has as great reason to be proud
of its women and men working in the field of charity and benevolence.

Of the men, as said of the women, paragraphs could be written to tell of large
handed generosity in this work. It is but just to say that industrious, conserva-
tive and frugal as are the great mass of Allegheny county's business men and
mechanical workers, the voice of distress ever finds a listening ear and a helping
hand, whether it come from the population around them or from some distant or
nearer city, where some calamity has brought distress and suffering.


The existence of Masonry in Western Pennsylvania dates back to 1759. It ap-
pearing from the minutes of the Eoyal Arch Lodge No. 3, of Philadelphia, that
John Hoodlass was " duly and lawfully entered, passed and raised at Fort Pitt in
the year 1759, by our brethern John Maine, James Woodward, and Eichard Ladly,
all Eoyal Arch Masons," by which it appears that Free Masonry was practiced at
Pittsburgh 124 years ago. There seems to be some doubt as to the existence of
any regular lodge at Fort Pitt at that time, and it is presumed that it was under
the action of the Military Lodge attached to the Eoyal Irish regiment then at
Fort Pitt. The first regular lodge at Pittsburgh was No. 45, and is asserted to have
been the first west of the Allegheny mountains. This dates back to December
27th, 1785.

The second was Ohio Lodge No. 113, of which Nathaniel Bedford, W. M.,
Isaac Craig, S. W., and Thomas Collins, J. W., were- officers. This lodge is men-
tioned in Cramer's Almanack of 1809, where in an account of glass cutting at Pitts-
burgh, a chandelier cut by "an ingenious German, (Eichbaum,) formerly glass cutter
to Louis XVI., late King of France," is mentioned as suspended "in the Ohio Lodge
No. 113, in the house of Mr. Kier, Inn keeper." In 1816 Lodge No. 145 was held

Online LibraryGeorge H. (George Henry) ThurstonAllegheny county's hundred years → online text (page 41 of 43)