Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Pittsburgh in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Herr's Island

 
 
Herr's Island Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, November 14, 2016
1. Herr's Island Marker
Inscription. This island was known as Herr's Island for over 200 years. Named for Benjamin Herr, a Swiss Mennonite, the island became an idyllic village with fruit trees and gardens. Herr operated a water-powered mill in the back channel as packet boats floated by on the Pennsylvania Canal.

After the Civil War, lumber and oil industries took advantage of the island location for oil refineries and saw mills. By the early 1900s, Herr's Island changed again due to legislation requiring railroads to provide a rest stop for animals traveling from Midwest to the East Coast. Onto the island moved a large stockyard followed by meat packing plants, a sawmill, fertilizer works, a railroad salvage yard, and the city garbage dump. Garbage and refuse were piled so high the railroads had to elevate their bridges.

After the stockyards and garbage dumps closed in the 1970s, Herr's Island was left as a contaminated "brown field." Today, the island symbolizes the City's ability to transform and old industrial site into a beautiful community and park. Century-old iron and steel railroad bridges remain to commemorate the industrial past. The new island development site is named Washington's Landing to honor George Washington who spent a night here after nearly drowning in the icy river in 1753.
 
Erected by
Herr's Island Marker Photos image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, November 14, 2016
2. Herr's Island Marker Photos
top photo caption
Herr's Island as a brown field in the 1970s

middle photo caption
Herr's Island covered with stock pens and railroad tracks, 1910

lower photo caption
Pittsburgh Provision Company was jointly owned by the railroad company
Friends of Riverfront, Pennsylvania DCNR, Steel Industry Heritage Corporation, City of Pittsburgh, Piranha Sports.
 
Location. 40° 27.579′ N, 79° 58.967′ W. Marker is in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in Allegheny County. Marker can be reached from Three Rivers Heritage Trail. Touch for map. Marker is located just west of the entrance of the pedestrian bridge to Herr's Island. Marker is in this post office area: Pittsburgh PA 15212, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Thomas Carlin's Sons Foundry (approx. 0.2 miles away); St. Nicholas Roman Catholic Croatian Church, North Side (approx. 0.2 miles away); Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto (approx. 0.2 miles away); St. Nicholas Church (approx. 0.2 miles away); Mala Jaska (approx. 0.2 miles away); Saint Nicholas Roman Catholic Church (was approx. 0.2 miles away but has been reported missing. ); St. Nicholas Church and Mala Jaska (approx. mile away); Troy Hill Incline (approx. 0.3 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Pittsburgh.
 
Also see . . .  Washington's Landing. RiverLife.org (Submitted on November 14, 2016, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.) 
 
Categories. Bridges & ViaductsIndustry & CommerceRailroads & Streetcars
 
Herr's Island Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, November 14, 2016
3. Herr's Island Marker
Herr's Island is just beyond the trees
Herr's Island from the GoodYear Blimp image. Click for full size.
By Darrell Sapp, Post-Gazette
4. Herr's Island from the GoodYear Blimp
<i>Herr's Island and Bridge, Pittsburgh, Pa.</i> - Handcolored Postcard View image. Click for full size.
circa 1910
5. Herr's Island and Bridge, Pittsburgh, Pa. - Handcolored Postcard View
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 14, 2016. This page originally submitted on November 14, 2016, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 230 times since then and 82 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on November 14, 2016, by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.   5. submitted on November 14, 2016.
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