Allegheny Arsenal

Essential Pittsburgh
8:40 pm
Wed July 3, 2013

Pittsburghers Spent The Summer of 1863 Preparing For The Confederate Army

Designed by Benjamin H. Latrobe and constructed in 1814, the Arsenal was used as a military garrison in the manufacturing and storing of supplies during the Civil War, Indian Wars, and Spanish-American War.
Credit University of Pittsburgh Libraries / flickr

Paint a picture of Pittsburgh in the summer of 1863 and it becomes evident why many once thought the city could be a target for an attack from the Confederate Army.

The Steel City housed scores of factories and foundries as well as the Allegheny Arsenal in Lawrenceville. All of these industries were ideal for producing war materials.  A take over of the city could provide the South with equipment and resources that other Pennsylvania cities, such as Harrisburg, could not supply. This industry coupled with its placement as a transportation hub at the three rivers allowed the city to stand out to many prominent figures of the period, including President Abraham Lincoln.

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