Home Index Site Map Up: Glassmaking Navigation
Up: Glassmaking

First: The City of Pittsburgh (Harper's Magazine, Volume 62, Number 367, December 1880) · Page 49 Last: The City of Pittsburgh (Harper's Magazine, Volume 68, Number 367, December 1880) · Page 68 Prev: The City of Pittsburgh (Harper's Magazine, Volume 62, Number 367, December 1880) · Page 62 Next: The City of Pittsburgh (Harper's Magazine, Volume 64, Number 367, December 1880) · Page 64 Navigation
Pittsburgh: 15 of 20
·Page 49
·Page 50
·Page 51
·Page 52
·Page 53
·Page 54
·Page 55
·Page 56
·Page 57
·Page 58
·Page 59
·Page 60
·Page 61
·Page 62
·Page 63
·Page 64
·Page 65
·Page 66
·Page 67
·Page 68

The City of Pittsburgh (Harper's Magazine, December, 1880) - Page 63

steel steamers for South American rivers, cold rolled shafting for Antipodes, and ploughs for "all creation," and that send iron tanks into the oil regions to hold the surplus of Oildom. There are hundreds of other objects of interest directly relating to the iron industry that must be passed with this mere mention.
Were Pittsburgh not the Iron City, she certainly should be the Coal City, and did she deserve neither appellation, assuredly she would be the Glass City.
Since shrewd old General James O'Hara and Major Isaac Craig "fired up" Pittsburgh's first glass furnace n 1796, this industry has found in that city such congenial soil that to-day ninety glass furnaces silently swell the overhanging cloud of smoke. In these furnaces, exposed to a heat that would appall a Shadrach, stand eight hundred big, queer "pots," nestling in the clear, bright heat, and holding a syrupy mass that is molten glass.
Window-Glass Blowing
These furnaces, or "glass-houses," are bulbous pyramids of brick, so encompassed with frame buildings as to their lower three-fourths as to closely resemble from a distance great square inkstands. Inwardly they glow with the fervor shown by their neighbors the iron furnaces. Outwardly they are dusty with sand and lime, and suggestive of a country grist-mill. The racket of wheels, however, is conspicuous by its absence. Nor is there puff of escaping steam, or hurrying tread of workmen; only the great upward roll of deep black smoke from the mouth of the giant ink-bottle, and the glare of the furnace. Internally this "glass-house" is almost as full of weird beauty as is the steel-melters' domain. In and about the glass pots and furnaces of Pittsburgh there labors an army of five thousand men and boys. These, as to the former, are strong of muscle, and stronger of lung; as to the latter, duly observant of the adage referring to throwing stones in glass houses, and deft in the handling of fragile things. A glass-blower's daily duties call for an amount of lung duty that would appall a Levy, or disgust an Arbuckle. In this phase of glass-making, i.e., the "blowing" of window and other glass, there has been little or no advance in half a century. Every other avenue in the industry has been