Published on the occasion of the visit of the International American Congress to Pittsburgh. "Este libro publicado y originado por Norton G. Chandler." "Las illustraciones en este libro por fotografiÌas tomadas por W.S. Bell, de Pittsburg, Pa., E.U. de A. / The illustrations in this book from photographs taken by W.S. Bell, of Pittsburg, Pa., U.S.A." Bound in blue velvet lining inlaid with "Pittsburg, Pa." in metal lettering and stored in cloth-lined box.
This beautifully illustrated book was published on the occasion of the visit to Pittsburgh in late 1889 by delegates participating in the International American Congress. The Notes present a remarkable account of the national and international business, banking and industries of the city of Pittsburgh at the end of the 1800s. In his book “Congreso Internacional Americano Pittsburgh. Trip of the Delegates. Objectives of the Congress” (New York City Press Asscociation, 1890), Charles A. O’Rourke described the Congress as the “the most important event of the hemisphere this year.” He also noted that “the most eminent men of the Western Continent met for the conference.”
Historical background: On October 1, 1889, delegates from Central and South American nations met in Washington, D.C. to attend the Inter-American Congress. There was a luxurious and warm welcoming reception, which included a banquet attended by the U.S. President Benjamin Harrison, his wife and members of his cabinet. A toast was made “for the everlasting friendship and prosperity of all the American Nations.”
The organizers of the Congress found it beneficial that, before entering fully into the Congress, the delegates travel throughout various regions of the United States, so that they could experience more thoroughly the nation and the people who comprise it.
To that effect, 59 delegates from 16 Central and South American countries boarded a train with Pullman cars equipped with modern accessories and luxurious refinements conceived with the good taste of the era. The delegates traveled for two months (October 2-November 13, 1889) six weeks visiting several states, subsequently returning to Washington, D.C. to fully embark on the Congress, which ended in December of that year.
Pittsburgh Visit (November 6-8, 1889)
The delegates arrived in Steubenville, Pa., on November 4th where Mr. Andrew Carnegie, an American delegate, joined the group, as did Mr. Davis, a former U.S. senator, a day later. Upon their arrival in Pittsburgh, the mayor of the city, Mr. William McCallin, introduced Mr. John Dalzell, a former member of the U.S. Congress, who welcomed the group and gave the Delegates a bronze medal plated in gold with “Pittsburgh, Gas City Chamber” written on the back. The main reception and dinner occurred at the Monongahela House, the premier hotel at the time. Many of the city’s most significant business and industries promoted their company and products at the Exposition Building at the Point. This included: Westinghouse; Thomas Evans Co.; A. French Spring Co.; The Point Bridge; Pittsburgh Plate Glass Co.; Blacksmith Workshops of J. Painter & Sons; Light Locomotives of H.K. Porter & Co.; Hussey Building,; Copper and Bronze Lamination Workshops; The Keystone Bridge Co.; H.C. Frick Coke Co.; Homestead Steel Works; Carnegie; Phipps & Co.; The Edgar Thompson Streel Works; and Juniata Iron and Steel Co. Even the Allegheny County Courthouse and several national and private banks were on hand along with John Brashear, who was showcasing his astronomical instruments. To commemorate their three-day visit, each delegate received this illustrated Pittsburgh history volume with photographs by Otto Krebs, a well-known Pittsburgh photographer. The volume includes exceptionally well-presented visual, textual, and numerical information of numerous industries, companies, and banks that were the keystone of Pittsburgh economic and industrial life at the time.