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Pittsburgh: 1941

Pittsburgh: 1941

June 1941. "Rain. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania." Medium format acetate negative by John Vachon for the Farm Security Administration. View full size.


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Atlantic Gas

The Atlantic sign is for the gas station. Atlantic petroleum was founded in Philly, then eventually acquired by Sunoco in the 80's or 90's.

Pressley Street

The previous comment is correct. That's St. Mary's (now known as the Priory) which sits at 614 Pressley Street.

It's Deutschtown

This is the corner of Madison and Lockhart, looking west. The church with the onion domes is St. Mary's -- Bavarian Catholic, believe it or not.

You can't go and see this intersection anymore since it was destroyed in the 1980s so that the Parkway North could be built. The church is still there, although now it's a hotel.

It's Southside

I've lived in Pittsburgh all my life and this shot looks remarkably like the Southside (flats) to me just off Carson Street. Many churches of similar Greek Orthodox venue there. A previous poster indicated he thought that Atlantic sign was a street. It looks like a gas station to me, or something else.

Morrow Triangle

Atlantic ave is a one-way northward running street to the east of downtown. The only intersection that makes a bend like the one photographed is at Liberty and Baum. There are no row homes or churches there now though.

The vantage point of the photo is a parklet called Morrow Triangle. The filling station and church are now the site of a car dealer. Unless there was a street name change that the Atlantic ave in the picture is different from the current Atlantic ave I think I'm right.

[The "Atlantic" sign is advertising a brand of gasoline. - Dave]

South Side P-Burg

This looks like the "South Side" of Pittsburgh and if I am not mistaken, this is an orthodox church which is now the private home and studio of the owner of the number one Pittsburgh chain of hair salons and spas.

Tioga Street, Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh has a lot of onion-dome ethnic churches all over town. The 1941 City Directory lists a Wm. James Confectionery at 7314 Tioga Street, which is where Point Breeze meets Homewood meets nothing original still standing. This would be east of downtown.

Look how it falls straight down!

Not only can I relate to DSS since we don't get a lot of rain in West Texas, but I'm just amazed at how it's coming *straight down*. (Huge gusts of wind aren't sucking her umbrella inside out, and the rain isn't coming in sideways and raising welts on her skin!)

P.S. Not that I'm complaining...I love it here, and my glasses usually protect my eyes from the infrequent SIDEWAYS rainstorms!

Such a wonder

It's 103 degrees on my front porch (yes, that's in the shade), my part of Arizona hasn't seen rain in 3 or 4 months. Guess whats going on my desktop. Thanks.


Canada Dry Spur

Canada Dry Spur ("the cola drink with Canada Dry quality") was Canada Dry's attempt at entering the cola wars. By this time of course the company was owned by P.D. Saylor and Associates and the only connection with Canada was the name.

Pittsburgh Precipitation

I agree with others here about the evocative quality of this photo. Staring at this for a few moments I swear I can hear the rain coming down!

A Rainy Day

The person walking with the umbrella really makes the photograph work. You can almost feel the rain..

I love the rain...

This photo immediately brings forth the smell of rain, the hiss of car tires as they pass and the drip drip drip of rainwater off the eaves of the porch.

What are the towers ...

... in the background? Is that another church? Looks Orthodox. Perhaps someone familiar with Pittsburgh will know.

Pittsburgh by Vachon

This is a beautiful picture. John Vachon's photos did not have the pathos and personal drama of Dorothea Lange's work, but more than any other American photographer, he has left an invaluable scrapbook of the vernacular American landscape. He is my favorite photographer.

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