THE impetus given to Pittsburgh's growth by its strategic location in the early days as the gateway to the West has never been lost, though it is no longer the only important gateway. River transportation had aided in setting the mold for the development of the region. The fact that goods could be floated to the markets in the West and South not only made Pittsburgh an entrepôt for eastern wares, but led to the early utilization of western Pennsylvania's ore and wood in the production of iron. This start, together with vast coal deposits, enabled the region to hold its lead in the iron industry, even when the ore had to be brought from Michigan and Minnesota. The same factors to a greater or less degree influenced the development of lumbering, woodworking, boat building, glassmaking, the ceramic industries, and a dozen others.
The success of the national government in quelling the Whiskey Insurrection not only stimulated immigration but encouraged the investment of new capital in Pittsburgh by those who were keen enough to see that transportation rates would enable its manufacturers to undersell those of the East. This fact, together with the progress of invention and the stimulus to manufactures afforded by the War of 1812, made the Pittsburgh of