Gregory Caspero: Being able to live and study at Duquesne University has also allowed me to become immersed in one of America’s great cities. In recent years, Pittsburgh has not only been recognized as America’s most livable city, but is even among the most livable cities in the world, primarily for its preservation in the post-industrial years. The more I live here, the more I learn and understand my community and surroundings. Here are some of the coolest things I have learned about Pittsburgh over the past few years:
1. Pittsburgh is named after Sir William Pitt. His family’s coat of arms is displayed on the flag of Pittsburgh, and the colors are the same as Pittsburgh’s three professional sports teams.
2. The Pittsburgh Steelers have won six Super Bowls (the most of any other NFL team), the Pirates have won five World Series, and the Penguins have won three Stanley Cups in their respective sports. Their winning ways helped the city earn the nickname, “City of Champions.”
3. In addition to being dubbed the “City of Champions,” Pittsburgh is also called the “City of Bridges.” There are a total of 446 bridges in Pittsburgh, which is the most in the world, even ahead of Venice, Italy.
4. Pittsburgh produced the steel that was used to construct the Empire State Building and Golden Gate Bridge.
5. The first injectable polio vaccine was invented by Jonas Salk in Pittsburgh in 1952. This helped to provide an effective prevention method of polio, and today it is nearly eradicated worldwide.
6. The banana split was created in 1904 in nearby Latrobe, PA. An apprentice pharmacist named David E. Strickler invented the popular ice cream treat at Tassel Pharmacy.
7. The Great Allegheny Passage is a 245-mile bike and running trail that stretches all the way from Pittsburgh to Washington D.C.
8. Many recent movies have been filmed in Pittsburgh, including The Dark Knight Rises, Perks of Being a Wallflower, The Fault in Our Stars, and Concussion.
9. The Cultural District is located in Downtown Pittsburgh and has the highest concentration of theatres anywhere in the country outside of Broadway in New York City.
10. Memorial statues of former Pittsburgh mayor Richard Caliguiri and television personality Fred Rogers were both sculpted by the world-renowned Robert Berks. He also sculpted the Albert Einstein Memorial in Washington D.C., as well as busts of Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy.