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City of Steel

Cover of City of Steel

City of Steel

How Pittsburgh Became the World's Steelmaking Capital during the Carnegie Era
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Despite being geographically cut off from large trade centers and important natural resources, Pittsburgh transformed itself into the most formidable steel-making center in the world. Beginning in the 1870s, under the engineering genius of magnates such as Andrew Carnegie, steel-makers capitalized on western Pennsylvania's rich supply of high-quality coal and powerful rivers to create an efficient industry unparalleled throughout history. In City of Steel, Ken Kobus explores the evolution of the steel industry to celebrate the innovation and technology that created and sustained Pittsburgh's steel boom. Focusing on the Carnegie Steel Company's success as leader of the region's steel-makers, Kobus goes inside the science of steel-making to investigate the technological advancements that fueled the industry's success. City of Steel showcases how through ingenuity and determination Pittsburgh's steel-makers transformed western Pennsylvania and forever changed the face of American industry and business.
Despite being geographically cut off from large trade centers and important natural resources, Pittsburgh transformed itself into the most formidable steel-making center in the world. Beginning in the 1870s, under the engineering genius of magnates such as Andrew Carnegie, steel-makers capitalized on western Pennsylvania's rich supply of high-quality coal and powerful rivers to create an efficient industry unparalleled throughout history. In City of Steel, Ken Kobus explores the evolution of the steel industry to celebrate the innovation and technology that created and sustained Pittsburgh's steel boom. Focusing on the Carnegie Steel Company's success as leader of the region's steel-makers, Kobus goes inside the science of steel-making to investigate the technological advancements that fueled the industry's success. City of Steel showcases how through ingenuity and determination Pittsburgh's steel-makers transformed western Pennsylvania and forever changed the face of American industry and business.
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About the Author-
  • Kenneth J. Kobus is a railroad and steel industry expert. He has worked in the steel industry in western Pennsylvania for over forty years.
Table of Contents-
  • Wrought Iron or Puddling
  • Crucible Steel

  • Fuels & Transportation.
  • Clinton, Lucy and Isabella
  • Bessemers Arrive at Braddock
  • Homestead and the Development of the Basic Open Hearth
  • The Duquesne Revolution
  • How the Puzzle Fits - The End of a Remarkable Era


Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    May 11, 2015
    Historian Feinman (Twilight of Progressivism) sets out to show just how dangerous the job of U.S. president can be, detailing 19 different assassination attempts on sitting presidents as well as aspirants to the office. Readers are likely familiar with the political climates and events surrounding the notorious murders of Presidents Lincoln, McKinley (whose assassination resulted in the decision to provide the President with constant protection by the Secret Service), and Kennedy as well as the attempted assassinations of Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan. They may be more surprised to learn that Hamas planted roadside bombs along a route that former President Jimmy Carter was traveling on in the Middle East in June 2009, and that a similar plan had been concocted by Saddam Hussein to assassinate George H.W. Bush in June 1993. It’s a sobering read, made even more poignant by Feinman’s rich assessment of each president’s contributions and accomplishments, as well as speculation on what could have been had victims survived or vice versa. Regardless of the reader’s political affiliation or leanings, they’re sure to come away with a deeper respect for U.S. presidents and those sworn to protect them.

  • Robert E. Ross, retired division manager, LTV Steel Corp., Cleveland Works, Pittsburgh Works, Warren Works Steelmaking is one of the great sources of wealth creation where nearby natural resources are processed into everyday essential tools. Kenneth Kobus has ably told of the Pittsburgh steel men who pioneered this product and made America a much stronger nation.
  • Donald McCaig, award-winning author of Jacob's Ladder and Canaan Kenneth Kobus knows how steel was made and, more importantly, why it was made. City of Steel lucidly describes sophisticated technical innovations so the reader understands why they were necessary and what processes and which men guided them to fruition. Kobus’s descriptions of early work conditions in the mills are harrowing, but make clear how Pittsburgh made us Americans who we are.
  • Ronald E. Ashburn, executive director, Association for Iron & Steel Technology Kenneth Kobus describes in detail how the collective innovations and competitive drive of Carnegie, Frick, Thompson, Jones, and others yielded unparalleled advancements in steelmaking technology that spearheaded the industrial revolution. More than just a technical retrospective, City of Steel provides unique insight to the inventive and managerial genius that ultimately led to the city’s rise to global steel dominance.
  • Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies Kenneth J. Kobus’s City of Steel is a straightforward, chronological examination of how the ferrous metals industry in Pittsburgh came to dominate not only the regional economy of western Pennsylvania, but also the national and international iron and steel market. An essential premise of the work is that Pittsburgh appears only in hindsight to be the natural capital of steelmaking in America. Kobus reminds us that many other steel centers, including those in Chicago and throughout Ohio, had ready access to coal, as did Pittsburgh firms, and were even closer to the major iron ore-producing region of the Upper Midwest. If Pittsburgh enjoyed no special geographic advantage, asks Kobus, why did it dominate the field? The author highlights two factors in the story of Pittsburgh steel: technology and the man who most effectively employed that technology, Andrew Carnegie.... [R]eaders interested in the social history of the Pittsburgh region will profit from the insights they gain by reading a narrow technical...
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    Rowman & Littlefield Publishers
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City of Steel
City of Steel
How Pittsburgh Became the World's Steelmaking Capital during the Carnegie Era
Kenneth J. Kobus
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