THE life of Pittsburgh's streets was a never ending drama replete with color and human interest. At two or three o'clock in the morning the farmers' wagons began to lumber in from the country, and their iron-shod horses and heavy tired wheels hit the city's cobbled pavements with a crash. Milkmen soon appeared and began making the rounds of the retail establishments, leaving at each place an ungainly can of lacteal fluid that was often "as pure as water could make it." From the fertile market gardens on Neville Island or "Shirties" Creek appeared flat-bottomed "John boats," piled high with melons and green groceries and poled by husky lads with gnarled knuckles and shoulders bowed from stooping over the rows of vegetables. The hucksters appeared presently and drove sharp bargains with the countrymen for the produce that they intended to hawk from door to door later in the day. A hard life, perhaps, was this early rising, but once in a century there was a recompense--witness that morning in 1833 when the market people were regaled for an hour by a remarkable shower of meteors that lit up the entire sky from hill to hill and that a day later received elaborate electrical explanations from late rising editors.
About five o'clock sleepy-eyed clerks appeared from hidden
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Publication information: Book title: Pittsburgh:The Story of a City. Contributors: Leland D. Baldwin - Author. Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press. Place of publication: Pittsburgh. Publication year: 1937. Page number: 268.