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Clearing the Air: Smoke Control in Pittsburgh, 1930–1960

Sherie R. Mershon
Pennsylvania Legacies
Vol. 10, No. 1 (May 2010), pp. 26-31
DOI: 10.5215/pennlega.10.1.26
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Page Count: 6
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Clearing the Air: Smoke Control in Pittsburgh, 1930–1960
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Abstract On December 3, 1937, thick smog enveloped downtown Pittsburgh. Aircraft pilots described “a ball of black ink” towering a mile into the sky. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that “gasping crowds of Christmas shoppers groped through avenues feebly illuminated by a sun that was dimmed to a moon's light by the worst blanket of smoke in five years.” The scene was an extreme version of a familiar, dreary reality in what was popularly known as the Smoky City.

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