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Collection Inside an American Factory: Films of the Westinghouse Works, 1904

Spelling Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh is an important industrial city at the confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers in southwest Pennsylvania. The French built Fort Duquesne at this site in the mid-eighteenth century but it fell to the British in 1758. The following year, British forces occupied the site and named it Fort Pitt in honor of the then-Prime Minister. The city was incorporated as Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in 1816.

According to information provided by the Pittsburgh Chamber of Commerce, the h at the end of the word was inadvertently dropped during a printing of the act incorporating the city. The spelling Pittsburg was used for years, even by the United States Post Office. The motion pictures and documents presented in this online collection date from the Pittsburg period. The spelling Pittsburgh was officially restored in 1911.

In this online presentation, Pittsburgh is spelled both ways. When we quote an original document or present a film title as copyrighted in 1904, we use the spelling of the time: Pittsburg. The new texts we wrote in 1996 spell the name Pittsburgh.