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The Pittsburgh Photographic Library (at your fingertips)

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The Pittsburgh Photographic Library currently contains over 50,000 prints and negatives relating to Pittsburgh’s history. Begun in 1950, by the University of Pittsburgh, and under the direction of photo documentalist Roy Stryker, noted local photographers such as Luke Swank, Frank Bingaman, Clyde Hare, Abram Brown, Harold Corsini and others, compiled a photo history of the Pittsburgh area. The project ceased in the late 1950’s and the Pittsburgh Photographic Library was transferred to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh in 1960.

There are thousands of great Pittsburgh photographs housed on the 3rd floor of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Main. (And you can order a framed print of every photo you see!)

What does that mean for you? Well, for starters, it’s a great photographic resource for those interested in the history of our region. The collection is now primarily housed in a couple of filing cabinets in CLP-Main’s Pennsylvania Department. Photos (contact prints mounted on index cards) are arranged by subject heading for easy browsing.

Want to peruse great old photographs of your neighborhood? Simple. How about pictures of bridges, stadiums, downtown skyscrapers being built, and more? All remarkably easy browsing–just head to the third floor of CLP, Main and look for the filing cabinets pictured (be sure to ask the super-knowledgeable staff any questions you might have).

What’s best about the collection is you that you can order prints of any photograph for a pretty reasonable rate. Check out the pricing HERE (they make a great gift!).

Bridging the Urban Landscape – Want to browse The Pittsburgh Photographic Library collection online? No problem. Bridging the Urban Landscape is an online hypertext exhibit of some 600 historical photographs and images, accompanied by text, of Pittsburgh, its bridges and its neighborhoods.

– Corey, Digital Learning Librarian

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