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Telling the story of Pittsburgh from the Worker's Viewpoint.
by Paul Carosi Monday, Sep. 22, 2008 at 5:14 AM
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In celebration of Pittsburgh's 250th anniversary the Point of Pittsburgh Blog is featuring the stories of working class heroes who made important contributions to Pittsburgh's and our country's history. They are celebrated in song, video, and stories.
The story of Pittsburgh's history is often told from the point of view of the great man theory crediting Pittsburgh's rise to the great robber barons Carnegie and Frick. In a new book and a CD, both entitled the "Point of Pittsburgh", the story of ordinary working men and women who struggled over two centuries for workers rights, worker safety, the banning of child labor, fair pay, equal rights, and free speech are told for the first time.
To commemorate Pittsburgh's 250th anniversary, historian Charles McCollester’s new book on the history of Pittsburgh and singer-song writer Mike Stout’s latest CD about Pittsburgh heroes and are being jointly released under the title “The Point of Pittsburgh”.
For Charles McCollester and Mike Stout, the Point of Pittsburgh is the unconquerable spirit of the people of Pittsburgh who forged the modern world. During its 250 year history Pittsburghers fought and struggled to improve life on this planet. The contributions of crusading leaders such as Martin Delany, George Vashon, Crystal Eastman, Frannie Sellins, Mother Jones, Phil Murray, Rachel Carson, and many others changed the world. In the days of the robber barons the mills of Pittsburgh were slaughter houses where over 500 workers were killed on the job every year. To win their rights the workers of Pittsburgh fought many bloody battles against the ruling powers: including the 1948 Cotton Mill Workers strike, the 1877 Railroad Strike, the 1982 Battle of Homestead, and the McKees Rocks Strike of 1909.
With rarely told gripping stories about the struggles of Pittsburghers and its many surprising characters McCollester and Stout evoke a renewed sense of pride and awe at what Pittsburgh and its inhabitants have meant to the world through history.
"The Point of Pittsburgh flips the stock storyline of the Steel City on its head" - Poet Pete Oresick, Chatham University
I applaud Mr. McCollester's efforts, and its product enormously, for this is a history that has not been written before. I urge Pittsburghers - and Americans - to read it." - William Serrin author of Homestead: The Glory and the Tragedy of an American Steel Town.
Based on characters from McCollester's book, a new weekly blog called The Point of Pittsburgh, is being launched in celebration of the 250th anniversary of Pittsburgh. In this blog the stories of individuals who left their mark on Pittsburgh and the World's History will be told in verse, video, and song.
The first installment is the amazing story of national abolitionist leader Martin Delany - A true Renaissance Man".If you want to learn the story of Pittsburgh from the working class point of view, read the "Point of Pittsburgh" You'll be amazed at what went on in Pittsburgh.