Supreme Court of Pennsylvania
The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania is the highest court in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Unified Judicial System. It claims to be the oldest appellate court in the United States, a claim, disputed by the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court; the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania began in 1684 as the Provincial Court, casual references to it as the "Supreme Court" of Pennsylvania were made official in 1722 upon its reorganization as an entity separate from the control of the royal governor. Today, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania maintains a discretionary docket, meaning that the Court may choose which cases it accepts, with the exception of mandatory death penalty appeals, certain appeals from the original jurisdiction of the Commonwealth Court; this discretion allows the Court to wield powerful influence on the formation and interpretation of Pennsylvania law. The original Pennsylvania constitutions, drafted by William Penn, established a Provincial Court under the control of his British governors.
The General Assembly, espoused the principle of separation of powers and formally called for a third branch of government starting with the 1701 Judiciary Bill. In 1722, the appointed British governor needed the House to raise revenues. House leaders agreed to raise taxes in return for an independent Supreme Court; the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania predates the United States Supreme Court by more than 100 years. Interpreting the Pennsylvania Constitution, it was the first independent Supreme Court in the United States to claim the power to declare laws made by an elected legislative body unconstitutional; the court meets in Philadelphia and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court consists of each elected to ten year terms. Supreme Court judicial candidates may run on party tickets; the justice with the longest continuous service on the court automatically becomes Chief Justice. Justices must step down from the Supreme Court when they reach the age of 75, but they may continue to serve part-time as "senior justices" on panels of the Commonwealth's lower appellate courts until they reach 78, the age of mandatory retirement.
Prior to 2002, judicial candidates in Pennsylvania were prohibited from expressing their views on disputed legal or political issues. However, after a similar law in Minnesota was struck down as unconstitutional, the Pennsylvania rules were amended, judicial candidates may now express political viewpoints as long as they do not "commit or appear to commit the candidate with respect to cases, controversies or issues that are to come before the court." After the ten-year term expires, a statewide yes or no vote for retention is conducted. If the judge is retained, he/she serves another ten-year term. If the judge is not retained, the governor, subject to the approval of the State Senate, appoints a temporary replacement until a special election can be held; as of 2005, only one judge has failed to win retention. Justice Russell M. Nigro received a majority of no votes in the election of 2005 and was replaced by Justice Cynthia Baldwin, appointed by Governor Rendell in 2005. Only one Supreme Court Justice, Rolf Larsen, has been removed from office by impeachment.
In 1994, the State House of Representatives handed down articles of impeachment consisting of seven counts of misconduct. A majority of the State Senate voted against Larsen in five of the seven counts but only one charge garnered the two-thirds majority needed to convict. Under the 1874 Constitution and until the Pennsylvania state constitution of 1968, Supreme Court justices were elected to 21 year terms. At the time, it was the longest term of any elected office in the United States. Superior Court of Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania Pennsylvania Unified Court System page on the Supreme Court
Pittsburgh Public Schools
Pittsburgh Public Schools is the public school district in Pittsburgh, United States and adjacent Mount Oliver. The combined land area of these municipalities is 58.3 square miles with a population of 342,503 according to the 2000 census. In March 2012, Linda Lane was named as the superintendent, she has a performance-based contract until Jan 2014. Lane served as Deputy Superintendent from 2006 until her promotion. In June 2016, Anthony Hamlet was confirmed as the new Superintendent after a month-long controversy over his credentials; the school district operates 54 schools with 3,900 full-time employees and serves 24,652 students with a 2016 General Fund Budget of $570.4 million, or $23,100/ student. Locations: Administration Building—341 S. Bellefield Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213—40.444716°N 79.950660°W / 40.444716. This act provided government aid for the establishment of a city school system which included the creation of four wards that were self-governed. Twenty years the wards were disbanded, the Central Board of Education was founded.
This board would govern the entire school district which would consist of nine wards or sub- districts. The first city superintendent of schools was elected in 1868. In 1911, the School Code of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania modified the existing system to include a Board of Public education that would oversee sixty-one sub-districts and two central boards; the Public School Code of 1949 further regulated the provisions and establishment of Pennsylvania state schools.. The following 2012-2013 rankings are based on mandatory Pennsylvania System of School Assessment testing of 11th grade students in reading and math. Only public high schools participate in PSSA testing. Taylor Allderdice High School: Ranked 382 out of 592 Pennsylvania Public High Schools Carrick High School: Ranked 492 out of 592 Pennsylvania Public High Schools Brashear High School: Ranked 521 out of 592 Pennsylvania Public High Schools Perry Traditional Academy HS: Ranked 557 out of 592 Pennsylvania Public High Schools Milliones University Prep HS: No test results listed Westinghouse High School: No test results listed The following City of Pittsburgh high schools serve the denoted City of Pittsburgh neighborhoods: Taylor Allderdice High School Glen Hazel, Hazelwood, Lincoln Place, East Hills, New Homestead, Park Place, Point Breeze, Squirrel Hill and Swisshelm Park.
Carrick High School Allentown, Arlington Heights, Bon Air, Overbrook, Mt. Oliver, Southside Slopes and St. Clair. Brashear High School Banksville, Brookline, Chartiers City, Crafton Heights, Duquesne Heights, East Carnegie, Esplen, Mount Washington, Ridgemont, South Shore, Southside Flats, West End and Windgap. Perry Traditional Academy High School Allegheny Center, Allegheny West, Brighton Heights, California-Kirkbride, Central Northside, East Allegheny, Manchester, Marshall-Shadeland, North Shore, Northview Heights, Perry North, Perry South, Spring Garden, Spring Hill-City View, Summer Hill and Troy Hill. Milliones University Preparatory High School Bedford Dwellings, Bluff, Central Business District, Central Lawrenceville, Crawford-Roberts, Garfield, Lower Lawrenceville, Middle Hill, Polish Hill, Stanton Heights, Strip District, Terrace Village, Upper Hill, Upper Lawrenceville and West Overland. Westinghouse High School East Hills, East Liberty, Highland Park, Homewood North, Homewood South, Homewood West, Lincoln-Lemington-Belmar and Point Breeze North.
As part of the final right-sizing plan approved by the Board in February 2006, eight of the poorer performing schools were transformed into Accelerated Learning Academies. The eight schools were: Arlington Accelerated Learning Academy, Colfax Accelerated Learning Academy, Fort Pitt Accelerated Learning Academy, Martin Luther King Accelerated Learning Academy, Murray Accelerated Learning Academy, Northview Accelerated Learning Academy, A. J. Rooney Accelerated Learning Academy, Weil Technology Accelerated Learning Academy; these schools were put on a longer school year calendar with 10 extra days, as well as a longer school day adding 45 minutes of instructional time. The ALAs use the America's Choice Design Model, developed by the National Center on Education and the Economy. In early 2006 the district contracted with Kaplan K12 Learning Services to develop a core curriculum for grades 6 through 12; the core curriculum will be phased in over the course of three years: during the 2006-7 school year the district will implement the new curriculum for English in grades 6–10 and Math in grades 6, 9 and 10.
Lesson plans and curriculum coaching will be provided to teachers, the students will undergo benchmark testing every 6 weeks to assess student progress. Each school will have curriculum coaches on-site to aid teachers and provide them with professional development; the Key Concepts presented in the curriculum will be aligned with the state standards tested for in the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment annual tests. In July, 2010, Bill Gates note
Fort Pitt (Pennsylvania)
Fort Pitt was a fort built by British forces between 1759 and 1761 during the French and Indian War at the confluence of the Monongahela and Allegheny rivers, where the Ohio River is formed in western Pennsylvania. It was near the site of Fort Duquesne, a French colonial fort built in 1754 as tensions increased between Great Britain and France in both Europe and North America; the French destroyed the fort in 1758. British colonial protection of this area led to the development of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County, Pennsylvania by British-American colonists and immigrants. In April 1754, the French began building Fort Duquesne on the site of the small British Fort Prince George at the beginning of the French and Indian War; the Braddock expedition, a 1755 British attempt to take Fort Duquesne, met with defeat at the Battle of the Monongahela at present-day Braddock, Pennsylvania. The French garrison defeated an attacking British regiment in September 1758 at the Battle of Fort Duquesne. French Colonel de Lignery ordered Fort Duquesne destroyed and abandoned at the approach of General John Forbes' expedition in late November.
The Forbes expedition was successful where the Braddock expedition had failed because the British Treaty of Easton of 1758 had cut into former French alliances with Native American tribes. Chiefs of 13 American Indian nations agreed to negotiate peace with the colonial governments of Pennsylvania and New Jersey and to abandon any alliances with the French; the nations were the Six Nations of the Iroquois League, bands of the Lenape, the Shawnee. They agreed to the treaty based on the colonial governments' promising to respect their rights to hunting and territory in the Ohio Country, to prohibit establishing new settlements west of the Appalachian Mountains, to withdraw British and colonial military troops after the war; the American Indians wanted a trading post at Fort Duquesne, but they did not want a British army garrison or colonial settlement. The British named it Fort Pitt, after William Pitt the Elder; the fort was built from 1759 to 1761 during the French and Indian War, next to the site of former Fort Duquesne.
It was built in the popular pentagram shape, with bastions at the star points, by Captain Harry Gordon, a British Engineer in the 60th Royal American Regiment. After the colonial war and in the face of continued broken treaties, broken promises and encroachment by the Europeans, in 1763 the western Lenape and Shawnee took part in a Native uprising known as Pontiac's War, an effort to drive settlers out of the Native American territory; the American Indians' siege of Fort Pitt began on June 22, 1763, but they found it too well-fortified to be taken by force. In negotiations during the siege, Captain Simeon Ecuyer, the commander of Fort Pitt, gave two Delaware emissaries blankets, exposed to smallpox; the potential of this act to cause an epidemic among the American Indians was understood. Commander William Trent wrote that he hoped "it will have the desired effect." Colonel Henry Bouquet, leading a relief force, would discuss similar tactics with Commander-in-Chief Jeffery Amherst. The effectiveness of these attempts to spread the disease are unknown, although it is known that the method used is inefficient compared to respiratory transmission, it is difficult to differentiate from occurring epidemics resulting from previous contacts with colonists.
During and after Pontiac's War, epidemics of smallpox among Native Americans devastated the tribes of Ohio Valley and the Great Lakes areas. On August 1, 1763, most of the American Indians broke off the siege to intercept the approaching force under Colonel Bouquet. In the Battle of Bushy Run, Bouquet fought off the American Indian attack and relieved Fort Pitt on August 10. In 1772, after Pontiac's War, the British commander at Fort Pitt sold the building to two colonists, William Thompson and Alexander Ross. At that time, the Pittsburgh area was claimed by the colonies of both Virginia and Pennsylvania, which struggled for power over the region. After Virginians took control of Fort Pitt, they called it Fort Dunmore, in honour of Virginia's Governor Lord Dunmore; the fort served as a staging ground in Dunmore's War of 1774. During the American Revolutionary War, Fort Pitt served as a headquarters for the western theatre of the war. In present-day Michigan, the British garrisoned Fort Detroit.
A redoubt, a small brick outbuilding called the Blockhouse, survives in Point State Park as the sole remnant of Fort Pitt. Erected in 1764, it is believed to be the oldest building still standing in Pittsburgh. Used for many years as a private residence, the blockhouse was purchased and preserved for many years by the local chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Notice was given to area residents of an auction of all salvageable remains of the fort on August 3, 1797 after the U. S. Army decommissioned the site. In the 20th century, the city of Pittsburgh commissioned archeological excavation of the foundations of Fort Pitt. Afterward, some of the fort was reconstructed to give visitors at Point State Park a sense of the size of the fort. In this rebuilt section, the Fort Pitt Museum is housed in the Monongahela Bastion, excavated portions of the fort were filled in. Fort Pitt Foundry was an important armaments manufacturing center for the Federal government during the Civil War, under the charge of William Metcalf.
The Allegheny Uprising starred Claire Trevor. In Cecil B. DeMille's Unconquered, starring Gary Cooper and Paulette Goddard, Howard Da Silva played a gunrunner and Boris Karloff a Seneca chief who lead an American Indian uprising in 1763
National Register of Historic Places
The National Register of Historic Places is the United States federal government's official list of districts, buildings and objects deemed worthy of preservation for their historical significance. A property listed in the National Register, or located within a National Register Historic District, may qualify for tax incentives derived from the total value of expenses incurred preserving the property; the passage of the National Historic Preservation Act in 1966 established the National Register and the process for adding properties to it. Of the more than one million properties on the National Register, 80,000 are listed individually; the remainder are contributing resources within historic districts. For most of its history the National Register has been administered by the National Park Service, an agency within the United States Department of the Interior, its goals are to help property owners and interest groups, such as the National Trust for Historic Preservation, coordinate and protect historic sites in the United States.
While National Register listings are symbolic, their recognition of significance provides some financial incentive to owners of listed properties. Protection of the property is not guaranteed. During the nomination process, the property is evaluated in terms of the four criteria for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places; the application of those criteria has been the subject of criticism by academics of history and preservation, as well as the public and politicians. Historic sites outside the country proper, but associated with the United States are listed. Properties can be nominated in a variety of forms, including individual properties, historic districts, multiple property submissions; the Register categorizes general listings into one of five types of properties: district, structure, building, or object. National Register Historic Districts are defined geographical areas consisting of contributing and non-contributing properties; some properties are added automatically to the National Register when they become administered by the National Park Service.
These include National Historic Landmarks, National Historic Sites, National Historical Parks, National Military Parks, National Memorials, some National Monuments. On October 15, 1966, the Historic Preservation Act created the National Register of Historic Places and the corresponding State Historic Preservation Offices; the National Register consisted of the National Historic Landmarks designated before the Register's creation, as well as any other historic sites in the National Park system. Approval of the act, amended in 1980 and 1992, represented the first time the United States had a broad-based historic preservation policy; the 1966 act required those agencies to work in conjunction with the SHPO and an independent federal agency, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, to confront adverse effects of federal activities on historic preservation. To administer the newly created National Register of Historic Places, the National Park Service of the U. S. Department of the Interior, with director George B.
Hartzog Jr. established an administrative division named the Office of Archeology and Historic Preservation. Hartzog charged OAHP with creating the National Register program mandated by the 1966 law. Ernest Connally was the Office's first director. Within OAHP new divisions were created to deal with the National Register; the division administered several existing programs, including the Historic Sites Survey and the Historic American Buildings Survey, as well as the new National Register and Historic Preservation Fund. The first official Keeper of the Register was an architectural historian. During the Register's earliest years in the late 1960s and early 1970s, organization was lax and SHPOs were small and underfunded. However, funds were still being supplied for the Historic Preservation Fund to provide matching grants-in-aid to listed property owners, first for house museums and institutional buildings, but for commercial structures as well. A few years in 1979, the NPS history programs affiliated with both the U.
S. National Parks system and the National Register were categorized formally into two "Assistant Directorates." Established were the Assistant Directorate for Archeology and Historic Preservation and the Assistant Directorate for Park Historic Preservation. From 1978 until 1981, the main agency for the National Register was the Heritage Conservation and Recreation Service of the United States Department of the Interior. In February 1983, the two assistant directorates were merged to promote efficiency and recognize the interdependency of their programs. Jerry L. Rogers was selected to direct this newly merged associate directorate, he was described as a skilled administrator, sensitive to the need for the NPS to work with SHPOs, local governments. Although not described in detail in the 1966 act, SHPOs became integral to the process of listing properties on the National Register; the 1980 amendments of the 1966 law further defined the responsibilities of SHPOs concerning the National Register.
Several 1992 amendments of the NHPA added a category to the National Register, known as Traditional Cultural Properties: those properties associated with Native American or Hawaiian groups
University of Pittsburgh
The University of Pittsburgh is a state-related research university in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It was founded as the Pittsburgh Academy in 1787 on the edge of the American frontier, it developed and was renamed as Western University of Pennsylvania by a change to its charter in 1819. After surviving two devastating fires and various relocations within the area, the school moved to its current location in the Oakland neighborhood of the city. Pitt was a private institution until 1966 when it became part of the Commonwealth System of Higher Education; the university is composed of 17 undergraduate and graduate schools and colleges at its urban Pittsburgh campus, home to the university's central administration and 28,766 undergraduate and professional students. The university includes four undergraduate schools located at campuses within Western Pennsylvania: Bradford, Greensburg and Titusville; the 132-acre Pittsburgh campus has multiple contributing historic buildings of the Schenley Farms Historic District, most notably its 42-story Gothic revival centerpiece, the Cathedral of Learning.
The campus is situated adjacent to the flagship medical facilities of its affiliated University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, as well as the Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, Schenley Park, Carnegie Mellon University. The university has an annual operating budget of $2 billion; this includes nearly $940 million in research and development expenditures as of 2017, the 16th-highest in the nation. A member of the Association of American Universities, Pitt is the third-largest recipient of federally sponsored health research funding among U. S. universities in 2018 and it is a major recipient of research funding from the National Institutes of Health. It is the second-largest non-government employer in the Pittsburgh region behind UPMC. Pitt is ranked among the top research universities in the United States in both domestic and international rankings and it has been listed as a "best value" in higher education by several publications. Pitt students have access to arts programs throughout the campus and city and can participate in over 400 student clubs and organizations.
Pitt's varsity athletic teams, collectively known as the Pittsburgh Panthers, compete in Division I of the NCAA as members of the Atlantic Coast Conference. Founded by Hugh Henry Brackenridge as Pittsburgh Academy in 1787, the University of Pittsburgh is one of the few universities and colleges established in the 18th century in the United States, it is the oldest continuously chartered institution of learning in the U. S. west of the Allegheny Mountains. The school began as a preparatory school in a log cabin as early as 1770 in Western Pennsylvania a frontier. Brackenridge obtained a charter for the school from the state legislature of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania on February 28, 1787, just ten weeks before the opening of the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia. A brick building was erected in 1790 on the south side of Third Street and Cherry Alley for the Pittsburgh Academy; the small two-story brick building, with a gable facing the alley, contained three rooms: one below and two above.
Within a short period, more advanced education in the area was needed, so in 1819 the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania amended the school's 1787 charter to confer university status. The school was named the Western University of Pennsylvania, or WUP, was intended to be the western sister institution to the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. By 1830, WUP had moved into a new three-story, freestone-fronted building, with Ionic columns and a cupola, near its original buildings fronting the south side of Third Street, between Smithfield Street and Cherry Alley in downtown Pittsburgh. By the 1830s, the university faced severe financial pressure to abandon its traditional liberal education in favor of the state legislature's desire for it to provide more vocational training; the decision to remain committed to liberal education nearly killed the university, but it persevered despite its abandonment by the city and state. It was during this era that the founder of Mellon Bank, Thomas Mellon and taught at WUP.
The university's buildings, along with most of its records and files, were destroyed in the Great Fire of 1845 that wiped out 20 square blocks of Pittsburgh. Classes were temporarily held in Trinity Church until a new building was constructed on Duquesne Way. Only four years in 1849, this building was destroyed by fire. Due to the catastrophic nature of these fires, operations were suspended for a few years to allow the university time to regroup and rebuild. By 1854, WUP had erected a new building on the corner of Ross and Diamond streets and classes resumed in 1855, it is during this era, in 1867, that Samuel Pierpont Langley, inventor, aviation pioneer and future Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, was chosen as director of the Allegheny Observatory, donated to WUP in 1865. Langley was professor of astronomy and physics and remained at WUP until 1891, when he was succeeded by another prominent astronomer, James Keeler. Growing during this period, WUP outgrew its downtown facilities and the university moved its campus to Allegheny City.
The university found itself on a 10-acre site on the North Side's Observatory Hill at the location of its Allegheny Observatory. There, it constructed two new buildings, Science Hall and Main Hall, that were occupied by 1889 and 1890 respectively. During this era, the first
Port Authority of Allegheny County
The Port Authority of Allegheny County is the second-largest public transit agency in Pennsylvania and the 26th-largest in the United States. The county-owned, state-funded agency is based in Pittsburgh and is overseen by a CEO and a nine-member board of unpaid volunteer directors, who are appointed by the county executive and approved by the county council; the Port Authority's bus, light rail and funicular system covers Allegheny County. On a few of its longer-distance routes, service extends into neighboring counties such as Beaver and Westmoreland; these counties have their own transit systems, including several routes that run into downtown Pittsburgh, where riders can make connections with Port Authority service. The Port Authority was created by the Pennsylvania General Assembly in 1956 to allow for creation of port facilities in the Pittsburgh area. Three years the legislation was amended to allow the Port Authority to acquire owned transit companies that served the area; this included the Pittsburgh Railways Company and 32 independent incline operations.
On April 19, 1963, the Board of Allegheny County Commissioners authorized the acquisition of 32 transit companies, including the Pittsburgh Railways Company, which had provided bus and streetcar service to Pittsburgh since January 1902, an incline plane company, for about $12 million. On March 1, 1964, Port Authority Transit began service. Shortly after the Port Authority began service, 150 GM "Fishbowl" buses were introduced to replace aging ones acquired from its predecessors, a new route numbering convention was introduced, the fare system was streamlined. Due to urban sprawl, the agency introduced new routes. In the following years, additional buses were ordered and several new transit garages opened. Many of the trolley lines acquired from Pittsburgh Railways were abandoned, turned into bus lines. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, the Port Authority hoped to introduce a modern rapid transit system known as Skybus with rubber-tired vehicles running on rails, but the plan fell through. In the early 1970s, the Port Authority entered what was dubbed by its fans the "Mod" era, with buses repainted in splashy paint schemes.
Several new flyer routes and routes to Oakland's university core were introduced as part of a new general marketing strategy. In 1975 the Port Authority took over the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad commuter rail line to Versailles, which it branded PATrain; these new routes, coupled with the 1973 oil crisis, generated a major increase in ridership. Due to the poor state of the economy at the time, fares increased and there was a brief strike in 1976. In spite of these setbacks, the South Busway opened in 1977 and plans for other capital investments were made. During the 1980s, with gas prices falling and population loss from the decline of the steel industry, ridership decreased and the agency lowered fares to attract new riders in the middle of the decade. Many new buses were ordered, the Martin Luther King Jr. East Busway opened in 1983. Construction of a light rail line that started in downtown south to traverse Beechview, with lines to South Hills Village and Library progressed during the decade.
Part of the line was an updated version of the old trolley system. In July 1985, the downtown subway opened, the Beechview line followed in 1987 and the Library line a year later. In 1989, the agency celebrated its twenty-fifth year of existence, commuter rail to Versailles was discontinued; the agency was rocked by a four-week strike due to a labor dispute in 1992. The strike, coupled with changing demographic patterns, caused a decrease in ridership. New buses that were compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 were introduced early in the decade. In 1993, the badly deteriorated Overbrook light rail line was shut down, requiring trains to use the Beechview line. Several capital projects, such as the construction of a western busway and light rail extensions were considered. In 1998, the agency rebranded itself as "Ride Gold" with new paint schemes and a new marketing campaign. In 2000, the West Busway from the Ohio River to Carnegie was opened. Shortly thereafter, new bus routes to outlying communities such as Cranberry were established.
In 2003, a short extension of the East Busway was completed. The following year, the Overbrook light rail line was re-opened after a lengthy reconstruction. Construction started on a light rail extension to Pittsburgh's North Shore near Heinz Field, known as the North Shore Connector. In spite of the capital projects expansion, the agency was in serious financial trouble by the middle of the decade. In June 2007, the agency went through with a 15 percent service cut. In order to provide a dedicated source of funding, Allegheny County Chief Executive Dan Onorato introduced the controversial 10% Allegheny County Alcoholic Beverage Tax in 2008 to fund the agency; that same year, another strike was narrowly averted. The agency is planning a major service overhaul that will begin to go into effect in March 2010; the Port Authority pays $168,763 annually to Buchanan, Ingersoll & Rooney and $48,750 annually to Greenlee Partners to lobby the Pennsylvania General Assembly. Between 2007 and 2010, the Port Authority cut its annual expenses by $52 million and raised its revenues by $14 million to help alleviate a statewide transportation funding crisis.
The funding crisis only grew worse, however. The state legislature assumed it would receive permission to convert Interstate 80 into a toll road to increase revenues, but the federal government denied the request, leading to a gap in the sta
Henry Clay Frick
Henry Clay Frick was an American industrialist, union-buster, art patron. He founded the H. C. Frick & Company coke manufacturing company, was chairman of the Carnegie Steel Company, played a major role in the formation of the giant U. S. Steel manufacturing concern, he financed the construction of the Pennsylvania Railroad and the Reading Company, had extensive real estate holdings in Pittsburgh and throughout the state of Pennsylvania. He built the historic neoclassical Frick Mansion, upon his death donated his extensive collection of old master paintings and fine furniture to create the celebrated Frick Collection and art museum. However, as a founding member of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club, he was in large part responsible for the alterations to the South Fork Dam that caused its failure, leading to the catastrophic Johnstown Flood, his vehement opposition to unions caused violent conflict, most notably in the Homestead Strike. Frick was born in West Overton, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, in the United States, a grandson of Abraham Overholt, the owner of the prosperous Overholt Whiskey distillery.
Frick's father, John W. Frick, was unsuccessful in business pursuits. Henry Clay Frick did not graduate. In 1871, at 21 years old, Frick joined two cousins and a friend in a small partnership, using a beehive oven to turn coal into coke for use in steel manufacturing, vowed to be a millionaire by the age of thirty; the company was called Frick Coke Company. Thanks to loans from the family of lifelong friend Andrew W. Mellon, by 1880, Frick bought out the partnership; the company was renamed H. C. Frick & Company, employed 1,000 workers and controlled 80 percent of the coal output in Pennsylvania, operating coal mines in Westmoreland and Fayette counties, where he operated banks of beehive coke ovens; some of the brick and stone structures are still visible in both Westmoreland Counties. Shortly after marrying Adelaide Howard Childs, in 1881, Frick met Andrew Carnegie in New York City while the Fricks were on their honeymoon; this introduction would lead to an eventual partnership between H. C. Frick & Company and Carnegie Steel Company and to United States Steel.
This partnership ensured. Frick became chairman of the company. Carnegie made multiple attempts to force Frick out of the company they had created by making it appear that the company had nowhere left to go and that it was time for Frick to retire. Despite the contributions Frick had made towards Andrew Carnegie's fortune, Carnegie disregarded him in many executive decisions including finances. At the suggestion of his friend Benjamin Ruff, Frick helped to found the exclusive South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club high above Johnstown, Pennsylvania; the charter members of the South Fork Fishing and Hunting Club were Benjamin Ruff. Yeager, J. B. White, Henry Clay Frick, E. A. Meyers, C. C. Hussey, D. R. Ewer, C. A. Carpenter, W. L. Dunn, W. L. McClintock, A. V. Holmes; the sixty-odd club members were the leading business tycoons of Western Pennsylvania, included among their number Frick’s best friend, Andrew Mellon, his attorneys Philander Knox and James Hay Reed, as well as Frick's occasional business partner Andrew Carnegie.
The club members made inadequate repairs to what was at that time the world's largest earthen dam, behind which formed a private lake called Lake Conemaugh. Less than 20 miles downstream from the dam sat the city of Johnstown. Cambria Iron Company operated a large iron and steel work in Johnstown and its owner, Daniel J. Morrell, was concerned about the safety of the dam and the thoroughness of repairs made to it. Morrell had sent his own engineer to inspect the site but little was done in the long run to satisfy his concerns and the matter was dropped after Morrell's death in the mid-1880s. Poor maintenance, unusually high snow melt and heavy spring rains combined to cause the dam to give way on May 31, 1889, resulting in the Johnstown Flood. Other sources blame a screen placed across the spillway by the club to prevent fish from escaping, as a cause, when debris accumulated during a storm; when word of the dam's failure was telegraphed to Pittsburgh and other members of the club gathered to form the Pittsburgh Relief Committee for assistance to the flood victims, as well as determining never to speak publicly about the club or the flood.
This strategy was a success, Knox and Reed were able to fend off all lawsuits that would have placed blame upon the club’s members. With a volumetric flow rate that temporarily equalled that of the Mississippi River, the flood killed 2,209 people and caused US$17 million of damage. Although Cambria Iron's facilities were damaged, they returned to full production within a year and a half. In 1881, Frick wealthy, took control of his grandfather's whiskey company, Old Overholt. Frick split ownership with one Charles W. Mauck; the family's whiskey company was a sentimental side business for Frick, was headquartered in Pittsburgh's Frick Building. In 1907, as prohibition became more popular across the country and Mellon removed their names from the distilling license, although they retained ownership in the company. Upon Frick's death in 1919, he left his share of the company to Mellon. Frick and Carnegie's partnership was strained over actions taken in response to the Homestead Steel Strike, an 1892 labor strike at the Homestead Wor