Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Pittsburgh from the Sky in 1950 Pre-Renaissance Views Document 'Old' Downtown and Oakland

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Pittsburgh from the Sky in 1950 Pre-Renaissance Views Document 'Old' Downtown and Oakland

Article excerpt

One day in August of 1950, two automobiles rumbled shoulder-to- shoulder on the Boulevard of the Allies and prepared to embark on what The Pittsburgh Press dubbed "a strange race" through the city's streets.

The event was a gimmick by the newspaper to convince drivers to slow down. Driving like a speed freak yielded no benefits, the Press declared. This competition between a vehicle traveling faster than posted limits and a second that was obeying traffic rules would provide proof.

The fast driver was Stewart Love, a Press photographer who, at least on this day, sped past other vehicles, "squealed around curves and violated every speed limit." Love finished the course a bare two minutes ahead of the "slow" driver who conformed to all the rules of the road, thus confirming the newspaper's suspicions that careening through the city at breakneck speed did little other than raise everyone's blood pressure. Still, we like to think Love enjoyed the experience.

Love was a technically skilled photographer who produced beautifully constructed pictures for Roto magazine from the mid- 1940s until his retirement in 1979. And he may have been a bit of a daredevil.

In addition to the "strange race" story, we found in our archives this picture of Love leaning on the edge of the Gulf Building in 1956. By then his willingness to venture to high locations and to climb into airplanes had earned him the title of the newspaper's "aerial" photographer.

Love produced some of his most spectacular work in 1949. In April of that year, the Press announced the publication of a series of "pictures-from-the-sky" showing the city from the vantage point of an airplane.

Aerial photographs are routine today - we're accustomed to seeing Pittsburgh from all angles in postcards, television commercials, movies, Instagram feeds and Facebook posts. …

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