Nunnery Hill Incline

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Nunnery Hill Incline
Nunnery Hill Incline.jpg
LocaleFineview, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Coordinates40°27′36″N 80°00′22″W / 40.460°N 80.006°W / 40.460; -80.006
Opened23 June 1888[1]
Closed13 September 1895
Line length1,100 feet (340 m)[1]
Track gauge5 ft (1,524 mm)[1]
Minimum radius250 feet (76 m)[2]

The Nunnery Hill Incline was a funicular in Allegheny City, Pennsylvania, in what is now the Fineview neighborhood of Pittsburgh. Designed by Samuel Diescher, it operated from 1888 until 1895 between its base station on Federal Street to its upper station on the currently named Meadville Street. It was one of a few inclines with a curve in the track.[3][4] The name of the hill derived from a short-lived settlement of Poor Clares earlier in the century.[5]

The incline suspended operations without warning on 13 September 1895, to the consternation of many of the hill's residents.[6] It did not resume business.[7] By 1901, it was being dismantled.[8]

Remnants of the incline, namely the red brick lower station and a stone retaining wall along Henderson Street, have been subject to preservation efforts.[9] Both structures received City of Pittsburgh historic designations in 2011.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Passenger Railways of the State of Pennsylvania". Philadelphia Securities (1893–94 ed.). Philadelphia: The Securities Press. 1893. p. 471.
  2. ^ "The Inclined Planes". The Street Railway Journal Souvenir: 39. October 1891.
  3. ^ "Plate 4" (Map). Real estate plat-book of the city of Allegheny. Philadelphia: G. M. Hopkins & Co. 2. 1890 – via Historic Pittsburgh.
  4. ^ Diescher, Samuel (June 1897). "American Inclined Plane Railways". Cassier's Magazine. 12 (2): 89.
  5. ^ History of Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. 1. Chicago: A. Warner & Co. 1889. p. 406.
  6. ^ "Suspended Operation". The Pittsburg Press. 15 September 1895. p. 7.
  7. ^ "Weary of Climbing". The Pittsburg Press. 21 September 1895. p. 3.
    "Nunnery Hill Residents". The Pittsburg Press. 6 March 1896. p. 1.
    "Nunnery Hill People". The Pittsburg Press. 22 January 1897. p. 11.
    "Hillites Want Street Railway". Pittsburgh Commercial Gazette. 22 February 1900. p. 8.
  8. ^ "A Lively Time Is Expected". The Pittsburg Press. 8 May 1901. p. 1.
  9. ^ LaRussa, Tony (4 November 2010). "Historic designation urged for rest of Fineview incline". TribLive. Retrieved 21 March 2015.
  10. ^ "City of Pittsburgh - File #2011-1263". Retrieved 1 July 2017.
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