Architecture Vintage


If you are a fan of historic photos of Pittsburgh, you will get really lost in Retrographer. I was forwarded a link to this site a couple months ago and then reminded of it again today. Now, I have been browsing all morning at work.

A view of the opening of the Schenley Park Swimming Pool; 1921

Google view of Shenley today

The photos on the site are from the City Photographer collection and curated by the University of Pittsburgh’s Archives Services Center. Retrographer was started by Dylan Vitone in 2010 at Carnegie Mellon University and so far it has over 5,000 photos to browse through! What’s so great about this site is that it shows you what Pittsburgh looked like years ago and with the use of Google Maps you can geotag the images to see what it is today. Once the image is tagged, it’s sent back to the Archives Services Center to become a permanent part of the archives! This project really takes advantage of coding and technology today to show you how our city has transformed over the years.

Looking down the Boulevard of the Allies

Corner of Fifth and Shady Avenues looking to 6300 Fifth Avenue

Google view of Shady Avenue today

You can do searches by neighborhoods, Google map, a timeline bar and I’m sure there is something I might be missing. You can create an account and contribute because these photos do not have to be from Pittsburgh, it can be from other cities as well!

A view of Grant Street and Sixth Avenue from the roof of the William Penn Hotel

View of the Thrift Drugs Pharmacy and Luncheonette at 533 Liberty Avenue

Breeds Hill (now Hillcrest) Street at North Atlantic Avenue, general view looking east. A group of young men is visible on the right

Brady Street, South 22nd

East Carson Street

View of Forbes Avenue at Craig Street, looking east, 1938
All photos and titles are courtesy of

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