North Braddock, Pennsylvania
Borough Welcome Sign
|Official name: Borough of North Braddock|
|Named for: Edward Braddock|
|Landmark||Edgar Thomson Steel Works (1873)|
|Area||1.6 sq mi (4 km2)|
|Density||3,036 / sq mi (1,172 / km2)|
|Mayor||Thomas Whyel (D)|
|- summer (DST)||EDT|
|School District||Woodland Hills|
North Braddock is a borough in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, United States. North Braddock was organized from a part of Braddock Township in 1897. The borough prides itself in being the "Birth Place of Steel" for having Andrew Carnegie's Edgar Thomson Steel Works since 1873. North Braddock is a suburb 11 miles (18 km) east of Pittsburgh with a 15-minute travel time to the city. The borough is in the Mon Valley along the Monongahela River and is bordered by the boroughs of Braddock, Braddock Hills, Chalfant, East Pittsburgh, Forest Hills, Swissvale, and Wilkins Township. North Braddock is made up of three jurisdictional voting wards which are often used to describe specific areas of town. U.S. Route 30 highway passes through North Braddock before reaching the George Westinghouse Bridge to East Pittsburgh. The Port Authority bus line passes through all three wards and provides accessible transportation to downtown Pittsburgh and the surrounding region.
As of the 2010 census the borough population was 4,857, a huge decline from its 1940 population of 15,679. The decline is due largely to the diminishing steel industry in the Mon Valley, specifically the Edgar Thomson Steel Works, which formerly employed many residents.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Braddock Carnegie Library
- 5 Government
- 6 Public Safety Services
- 7 Events
- 8 North Braddock School District
- 9 High School Sports Championships
- 10 Woodland Hills School District
- 11 Parks & Recreation
- 12 Youth Sports
- 13 Grand View Golf Club
- 14 Notable People
- 15 References
- 16 External links
In 1742 a Scottish trader named John Fraser from eastern Pennsylvania acquired land at the location of the current Edgar Thomson Steel Works from Queen Aliquippa and the Lenape people. Frazier settled his family on the location, and in 1753 Christopher Gist and General George Washington met with Fraser while delivering messages from Governor Robert Dinwiddie of Virginia to French commanders in the Pittsburgh region. Dinwiddie urged the French commanders to withdraw from the Pittsburgh area. Fearing that a conflict was on the horizon, Frazier returned to Philadelphia in 1754.
In 1755 General Edward Braddock and British troops left Virginia and used Fraser as the guide with General Washington as the aide on the expedition. The objective of the expedition was to expel the French at Fort Duquesne. It was on July 9, 1755, when the British troops arrived at Frazier's cabin to be met with gunfire from the French troops. During the battle Braddock was wounded, dying on July 13, 1755, in nearby Uniontown. The area where Braddock was shot became known as Braddock's Field. Historical markers identify the site on present-day Jones Avenue across from Benjamin Fairless School. Braddock's Battlefield History Center commemorates this battle.
During the late 18th century farming was prevalent in the North Braddock area with the nearby Monongahela River used for trade. Whiskey became a very profitable product to trade, especially to the New Orleans area. In 1794 a whiskey tax was created, drawing in protest over 8,000 settlers from western Pennsylvania to the North Braddock area, as part of the Whiskey Rebellion. The angry settlers would not disperse easily, and federal soldiers were called in to enforce the new tax.
The British commander of Fort Pitt, Captain Edmondstone, had signed a grant of 328 acres (1.327 km2) of land from King George of England to Peter Rowletter. Once the French and Indian War was over, Mr. Rowletter sold the land to a judge from Pittsburgh, George Wallace, who bought around 328 acres (1.327 km2) of land, including part of Braddock's Field, on March 4, 1791. Here Wallace built a mansion as his summer home. Later the Marquis de La Fayette visited the country as the Guest of the Nation, and while doing so he stopped by Judge Wallace's mansion on May 28, 1825. After Wallace's death the home was left to his nephew who lost the property to a sheriff sale. The Wallace mansion would be used as a boarding school called the Edgeworth Ladies Seminary during the 1830s.
In 1835 the first coal mine opened between the hills near Sixth Street. During the 19th century the railroad industry was expanding across the country. Andrew Carnegie, with the increasing demands in steel for the railroad, began to build his first steel mill in 1872, named for John Edgar Thomson, the president of the Pennsylvania Railroad. By 1873 the demand for steel for the railroad had decreased, and the construction of the mill was halted. Good news came though when Carnegie secured a $2 million loan and finished the steel mill to roll its first steel under the supervision of superintendent William R. Jones. The mill would go on to expand, and in 1880 the first blast furnace was used at the Edgar Thomson Steel Works.
During 1897 East Pittsburgh tried to annex the land around the mill of North Braddock that was part of Braddock Township. Residents of Shady Park village (3rd ward) and of Wolftown (1st ward) came together to hold meetings on stopping East Pittsburgh from annexing the land near the mill known as Braddock's Field. William Yost serving as North Braddock's attorney petitioned the Quarter Sessions of Allegheny County that Shady Park and Wolftown would join as one town, also incorporating Braddock's Field. During the meetings 317 of 510 property owners signed an agreement helping Judge Kennedy make his ruling to form a new town.
On Monday, April 26, 1897, North Braddock was incorporated as a borough. Judge Kennedy of the Quarter Sessions Court of Allegheny County made the ruling and ordered the decree for the new borough. The first election of officials was to be held on May 18, 1897. The winners of the election included the burgess Henry Anderson, councilmen Joseph Wallace, John Walberg, John Maxwell, WJ Vance, Thomas Clark, J Grant Anderson, Fred Edwards, tax collector John Hutzen, and school directors Jones, Johnson, Scott, Colmey, Crossey, and Anderson.
North Braddock celebrated its centennial in 1997.
In April 2012, a Hollywood film titled Out of the Furnace starring Christian Bale and Woody Harrelson was filmed in North Braddock, Braddock, and Rankin. Film crews were busy in the area with the Mon-Valley serving as the film's setting.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough has a total area of 1.6 square miles (4.1 km2), of which 1.5 square miles (3.9 km2) is land and 0.1 square miles (0.26 km2), or 3.75%, is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 6,410 people, 2,631 households, and 1,681 families residing in the borough. The population density was 4,155.5 people per square mile (1,607.1/km²). There were 3,250 housing units at an average density of 2,106.9 per square mile (814.8/km²). The racial makeup of the borough was 61.70% White, 35.30% African American, 0.17% Native American, 0.31% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.59% from other races, and 1.87% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.25% of the population.
There were 2,631 households out of which 28.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.0% were married couples living together, 23.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.1% were non-families. 31.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.43 and the average family size was 3.06.
In the borough the population was spread out with 27.0% under the age of 18, 6.7% from 18 to 24, 26.5% from 25 to 44, 21.5% from 45 to 64, and 18.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females there were 89.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 82.6 males.
The median income for a household in the borough was $24,335, and the median income for a family was $30,473. Males had a median income of $30,960 versus $22,281 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $14,076. About 18.0% of families and 22.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 40.4% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.
Braddock Carnegie Library
Carnegie Free Library of Braddock is the first Carnegie Library in the United States built in nearby Braddock, Pennsylvania. Designed by William Halsey Wood in eclectic medieval style, it was built in 1888 and dedicated by Andrew Carnegie on March 30, 1889. An addition in more Richardson Romanesque style by Longfellow, Alden & Harlow was added in 1893. The library was named a National Historic Landmark in 2012, following its listing on the National Register of Historic Places in 1973, and is on the Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation's List of Historic Landmarks.
|This section needs additional citations for verification. (November 2013)|
North Braddock operates under a borough form of government. The borough is run by an elected nine-member council and mayor. The borough manager runs the day to day operations of the borough and implements the goals and objectives set forth by the borough council.
The borough is part of the Turtle Creek Valley Council of Governments.
Ordinances and building codes are enforced by the code enforcement officer. The borough solicitor handles all the borough legal issues. Glenn Engineering provides engineering consultation for the borough infrastructure.
North Braddock Borough Mayors (1897–Present)
|1897 - Henry Anderson||1914 - H.B Miller||1982 - Elmer DeVay|
|1899 - F.K. Leighton||1918 - B.M Bartilson||1983 - Steven Yanowitch|
|1903 - Johnson Snyder||1922 - Harvey Hunter||1984 - Norman Irvin|
|1904 - A.T Reid||1926 - G. Fenton Mitchell||1989 - Jerome Sepesy|
|1906 - George Whitfield||1938 - P.J. McLeigh||1990 - George Choma|
|1909 - James McWilliams||1951 - Michael Pendro||1994 - Raymond McDonough|
|1910 - John McCune||1966 - Thomas Curran||2010 - Thomas Whyel [12/2013]|
|1911 - A.L Best||1981 - Norman Irvin|
North Braddock Borough Council Members (2013)
|Ward 1||Ward 2||Ward 3|
|Nina Burdell Vecchio (President)(D) [12/2013]||John Vahosky (Vice Pres.)(D) [12/2015]||Richard Kostyak (D) [12/2015]|
|Timothy Bridge (D) [12/2013]||Christopher Roland (D) [12/2013]||Manaya King (D) [12/2013]|
|Michael Dobrinich (D) [12/2015]||Victoria Vargo (D) [12/2013]||Michael Breaston (D) [12/2015]|
The municipal building includes the mayor's office, council meeting chambers, manager's office, tax office, code enforcement office, public works garages, station #2 fire department, and the police department.
Public Safety Services
- North Braddock Fire Department - Fire and rescue services are provided by the North Braddock VFD. The department is staffed by volunteers overseen by membership elected officers consisting of a chief, assistant chief, two captains, and one lieutenant. The elected president and vice president oversee the civil operations in the department. All personnel are certified through the Allegheny County Fire Academy. Two fire stations are used in town located at Wolfe Avenue and the other on Bell Avenue. The department currently uses five pieces of apparatus (2 engines, 1 rescue, 1 service, and 1 squad).
- North Braddock Police Department - The police chief and sergeant oversee the eight patrol officers in the borough police department. The department protects and serves the borough 24 hours a day. Two to three officers are assigned during every shift for duty. A police secretary handles daytime non-emergency calls and records paperwork. The department utilizes four equipped vehicles for patrol: Ford Explorer Unit (#17), Ford Explorer Unmarked Unit (#18), Ford Taurus Unit (#19), Ford Pinto Unit (#69), and a Ford Crown Victoria Unit (#20).
- Priority One EMS - Priority One EMS located on Baldridge Avenue provides emergency ambulance services staffed by certified EMT and Paramedic personnel. Priority One also serves Braddock, East Pittsburgh, and Rankin.
- Clean Up Days - Volunteers in the community join together to clean up the neighborhoods of North Braddock every year. The next clean up day will be Saturday September 28, 2013 at 8:00am–3:00pm
- Community Days - The NBVFD and North Braddock Borough hold community days event every summer at the North Braddock Heights Field consisting of music, food, games, raffles, and parade. Proceeds all benefit the NBVFD for borough fire and rescue services. Community Days will return in August 2014.
- Council Meetings - North Braddock council meets the third Tuesday of every month starting at 6:30 pm with their work session and the council meeting at 7:00 pm. The public have an opportunity to address the meeting every month.
- Fall Festival - The Fall Festival is held every autumn around Halloween for community youth to enjoy treats and fun activities. The festival will be held on Sunday October 27, 2013 and the time will be announced.
- Firemen Parade – The annual firemen parade started in 2011 and celebrated its third year in 2013. The parade is held on the final day of Community Days and brings marching groups, fire apparatus, and other sights to the streets of North Braddock. The fourth annual parade will be in August 2014.
- Fish Fry – Every lent season the North Braddock VFD holds a fish fry on Wolfe Avenue that offers their famous fish sandwiches and other food. The fish fry will operate every Friday during lent starting on Ash Wednesday March 5, 2014.
- Light Up Night – Every December, light up night is held at the borough building to kick off the holiday season. The borough building is illuminated in lights, refreshments are served, crafts and games are held for children, and Santa visits North Braddock.
- Memorial Day Services - Every Memorial Day, local services are held with the North Braddock Amvets Post #60 and the Rankin American Legion #527. Local emergency first responders, elected officials, veterans, and residents visit a number of local sites to pay their respect to every U.S. veteran.
- Neighborhood Watch - Neighborhood watch meetings have been cancelled until further notice. The community teamed up to cooperate with police on reporting suspicious activity and crime.
- Public Safety Golf Outings – In 2011, council member Chris Roland organized a golf outing to raise funds for the North Braddock Police in order to purchase new bulletproof vests. The outing went well and started a tradition for future golf outings. The next golf outing has not been announced yet.
- Slippery Rock Care Program - Volunteer college students from Slippery Rock University, community groups, and residents come together yearly for community service projects. Braddock and Turtle Creek borough are also two other communities involved with the Slippery Rock University volunteer partnership. The next visit from the Slippery Rock volunteers will be planned for fall 2013.
North Braddock School District
North Braddock once operated its own North Braddock School District to educate the children of the area. The district had a number of school buildings in use throughout the borough. The schools used included, Original North Braddock High School (Bell Avenue), North Braddock Scott High School (Bell Avenue), Hartman Junior High School (Wolfe Avenue), Bell Avenue School (Bell Avenue), Brinton Avenue School (Brinton Avenue), McClure School (Electric Avenue), Jones Avenue Junior High School (Jones Avenue), Shady Park School (Lobinger Avenue), and Ben Fairless School (Jones Avenue). The district was merged under court orders into the Woodland Hills School District in the 1980s with 12 other communities.
High School Sports Championships
North Braddock Scott High School earned a number of high school sports championships.
- 1933 WPIAL Class A Championship - Gardner Point System Champion
- 1934 WPIAL Class A Championship - North Braddock Scott 6, Ambridge 0
- 1935 WPIAL Class AA Championship - Gardner Point System Champion
- 1937 WPIAL Class AA Championship - Gardner Point System Champion
- 1931 WPIAL Class A Championship
- 1931 PIAA Class A Championship - Scott 28, Lower Merion 15
- 1943 WPIAL Class A Championship
- 1973 PIAA Class A Championship - General Braddock 63, Reading 62 (General Braddock High School after the merger)
Woodland Hills School District
North Braddock School District was merged into the Woodland Hills School District. Woodland Hills operates nine school buildings. Fairless Elementary is the only operating Woodland Hills school in North Braddock. The Ben Fairless School serves grades (K-6). Woodland Hills is made up of students from 12 communities with elected board members representing the district's residents. Visit the Woodland Hills School District site.
Parks & Recreation
A number of parks are open daily and available for residents to use including the Brinton Avenue Park, General Braddock Ridgeview Park, and the Verona Street Park.
Basketball courts are accessible on Bowers Street at Ridge Avenue and on Mary Street in the North Braddock Heights.
Three fields are located in town including the Scott High Stadium field, the North Braddock Heights field, and the Fairless Elementary field.
The Grand View Golf Club provides a public 18 hole golf course for local residents and borough visitors to play.
- Braddock Falcons Midget Football - The Braddock Falcons participate in the Allegheny County Midget Football League. They compete against teams from Clairton, Garfield, East End, Hill District, Homewood, Lincoln, North Side, North Shore, and Wilkinsburg. The league offers community youth to play organized football in age classifications of twerps, termites, mighty mites, and midgets. The Braddock Falcons use Scott High Stadium on Bell Avenue as their home field and travel to opponent fields in the Pittsburgh area.
- Braddock-North Braddock Little League - The Braddock-North Braddock Little League was established in 1952 as a Williamsport sanctioned league at Scott High Stadium for community youth to play organized baseball. The league offers spring signups for tee-ball, minor league, and little league. Scott High Field was noted to be one of the best little league fields for decades with the rare grass infield. All-Star teams over the decades have traveled around the region to participate in other tournaments. In 1979 the local All-Stars were the Pennsylvania State Champions.
Grand View Golf Club
The Grand View Golf Club opened in North Braddock in May 1996. The 18-hole golf course was constructed on the hills of North Braddock overlooking the Mon-Valley. The public course holds many local outings and attracts visitors from all over the Western PA region.
- Steve Breaston - NFL wide receiver for the New Orleans Saints who was a standout player at the University of Michigan and Woodland Hills High School
- Mark Gefert - Graduate of North Braddock Scott High School and Purdue University; All Big-Ten linebacker 1973; 8th round draft pick in the 1974 National Football League Draft of the Pittsburgh Steelers
- Wes Lyons - NFL tight end and Arena League wide receiver who played at Woodland Hills High School and West Virginia University. Also an author of his first book, "The Pursuit With Patience"
- Coley McDonough - NFL quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Chicago Cardinals
- Lousaka Polite - NFL fullback for the Atlanta Falcons and star at the University of Pittsburgh and Woodland Hills High School
- Bill Priatko - NFL linebacker for the Pittsburgh Steelers who attended the University of Pittsburgh and North Braddock Scott High School
- Fran Rogel - NFL fullback for the Pittsburgh Steelers and standout player at Penn State University and North Braddock Scott High School
- Benjamin L. Rosenbloom - graduate of North Braddock High School and West Virginia University who practiced law and became a US Representative for West Virginia
- "Race, Hispanic or Latino, Age, and Housing Occupancy: 2010 Census Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File (QT-PL), North Braddock borough, Pennsylvania". U.S. Census Bureau, American FactFinder 2. Retrieved September 21, 2011.
- "Braddock's Battlefield History Center". Retrieved 25 November 2013.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "Number of Inhabitants: Pennsylvania". 18th Census of the United States. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- "Pennsylvania: Population and Housing Unit Counts". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 22 November 2013.
- North Braddock VFD
- North Braddock Police Nixle Alerts
- Priority One EMS
- North Braddock Facebook
- North Braddock Twitter
- Braddock's Battlefield History Center
- Grand View Golf Club
- County Borough Profile
- Woodland Hills School District
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