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Matzah, Made in Pittsburgh

  A photograph from the April 24, 1929 edition of the Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph, showing Radbord and a team of baker packing matzah for Passover deliveries throughout Western Pennsylvania. If you bought a box of matzah for Passover this year, it probably came from the grocery store. And the grocery store probably got it from a…

The Rise and Fall of Pittsburgh’s Diamond Market

  Traffic running under Diamond Market, c. 1960. At the time it was developed, planners saw the traffic throughway as a solution to creating space for both cars and commerce. From the Detre Library & Archives at the Heinz History Center. From 1915 until it was demolished in 1961, Diamond Market shaped the life of…

The Heinz Pickle Pin

  In addition to creating one of the world’s largest food companies, H.J. Heinz is remembered for his innovations in advertising and promotion. One of his smallest ideas became one of his most revolutionary: the pickle charm. The H.J. Heinz Company’s grand display at the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893. H.J. Heinz Company Photographs, Detre…

Jasmine Cho’s Portraits in Icing

  Please note that these cookie portraits are no longer on display at the museum. Thank you. The Heinz History Center’s current exhibition, Smithsonian’s Portraits of Pittsburgh: Works from the National Portrait Gallery, reminds us of the remarkable national impact of people whose lives have intersected with this region. But the exhibition also challenges us…

Johnny Garneau: Smorgasbords & Sneeze Guards

  The original all-in-one sneeze guard table at Johnny Garneau’s Smorgasbord when it opened in Monroeville, 1958. Gift of Barbara Garneau Kelley. If you grew up in Western Pennsylvania from the 1950s to ’80s, Johnny Garneau’s Smorgasbords were the name in buffet restaurants. The challenge—then and now—is that customers can be careless with good hygiene…

All-Out for Victory Gardens!

  “Plant a Garden for Victory.” World War II poster by J. Howard Miller, for the Westinghouse War Production Co-Ordinating Committee, probably 1942. Like many Pittsburgh companies, Westinghouse encouraged their workers to participate in the Victory Garden campaign. This poster, made to be displayed in Westinghouse factories, was designed by the same artist who created…

Bootleg Beef and Smuggled Sirloin: Black Market Meat During World War II

  Ray Sprigle poses for a press photo with his black market meat, 1945. Ray Sprigle Papers and Photographs, MSS 799, Detre Library & Archives at the History Center. On April 23, 1945, Pittsburgh’s legal landscape bustled with activity. As a U. S. Grand Jury convened at the federal courthouse, Montana Senator Burton K. Wheeler,…

Heinz: Bottles and Product Labels and Advertising Cards

  The following post is an excerpt from the new book, 57 Servings From the Heinz Table, by History Center curator Emily Ruby. You can purchase the book from our museum shop or online. Heinz mincemeat, catalog illustration, 1895. From the H.J. Heinz Company Records, Detre Library & Archives at the History Center. Bottles and…

Heinz Pier and the World’s Fairs

  The following post is an excerpt from the new book, 57 Servings From the Heinz Table, by History Center curator Emily Ruby. You can purchase the book from our museum shop or online. Heinz pier, 1929. From the H.J. Heinz Company Photographs, Detre Library & Archives at the History Center. Heinz Pier When H.J.…

Heinz: First Products and an Innovative Factory

  The following post is an excerpt from the new book, 57 Servings From the Heinz Table, by History Center curator Emily Ruby. You can purchase the book from our museum shop or online. Evaporated horseradish, catalog illustration, 1895. Heinz’s first product would have been grated horseradish, but by 1895 the company also offered evaporated…