Pennsylvania Railroad stations and Whitney Dam, North Carolina postcards1909-1912
General Physical Description
Pennsylvania Railroad built the Greensburg station because of the economic activity brought on by coal in the region and Greensburg’s stature of being an industrial and retail hub. The station was designed by architect William Cookman. The station was heavily used by freight and passenger lines until the 1940s when the country began to rely on highways and the automobile and oil overtook coal as the main source of fuel. By the 1960s, passenger service had been suspended until Amtrak restored service in 1977, which is when the station was added to the National Register for Historic Places. The station, with its landmark clock tower, has been fully rehabilitated and is owned by the Westmoreland Cultural Trust.
The Swissvale station was in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. It was on the southwest side of Braddock Avenue. There was a freight station across the tracks to the northwest.
The Whitney Dam in North Carolina was an ill-fated project of Pittsburgh industrialist George Whitney. It was the largest construction project in the state at the time and included a five-mile canal as well. It was projected to produce 27,000 horsepower. This number grew as the project progressed. It was to be the centerpiece to regional economic activity that included mining, manufacturing, utilities, and real estate. A town named Whitney sprung up next to the construction site. But George Whitney lost his fortune in the Panic of 1907 and declared bankruptcy in 1910 before the dam was finished. In 1917, a dam was built at a new site downstream submerging the Whitney Dam under water.
The Pennsylvania Cement Company was located in Bath, Pennysylvania in Northampton County. This location is in the Lehigh Valley. Because of the availability of raw materials, including nearby coal mines that provided fuel for the kilns, the Lehigh Valley became the center of American portland cement manufacture. Portland cement was invented by a British stone mason, Joseph Asplin, in 1824. It is a finely ground mixture of limestone and clay that hardens when water is added. At the turn of the twentieth century the Lehigh Valley accounted for three-quarters of portland cement produced in the United States.
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- Pennsylvania Railroad stations and Whitney Dam, North Carolina postcards
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