Rebranded – For Her Pleasure!
Now that the GFFL News and Notes archive is part of its own GFFL website, the name Commissioner’s Corner no longer is applicable to my blog. So, in an effort to better represent the content of this space, this blog has been renamed to Three Rivers Philosophizer. I think you’ll agree that since this space deals mostly with sports, politics and comedy, Three Rivers seems to fit. As an added bonus, the “izer” is a shout out to all the “yinzers” out there, spreading Pittsburghese across the nation.
Now for a little history lesson about Three Rivers Stadium and the area in general:
The confluence of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers, creating the Ohio River, has greatly impacted the history of Point State Park. It was once at the center of river travel, trade, and even wars throughout the pioneer history of Western Pennsylvania. During the mid 1700s, the armies of France and the Great Britain carved paths through the wilderness to control the point area and trade on the rivers. The French built Fort Duquesne in 1754 on foundations of Fort Prince George, which had been built by the colonial forces of Virginia.
The French held Fort Duquesne during the French and Indian War, and it became one of the focal points for that war because of its strategic riverside location in disputed territory. The French held the fort successfully early in the war, turning back the expedition led by General Edward Braddock. A smaller attack by James Grant in September 1758 was repulsed, but with heavy losses. Two months later, on November 25, the Forbes Expedition, under General John Forbes, captured the site after the French destroyed Fort Duquesne the day before. The British built a much larger fort on the site and named it Fort Pitt.
The Forbes Expedition was successful where the Braddock expedition had failed because of the Treaty of Easton, in which local American Indians agreed to abandon their alliance with the French. American Indians, primarily Delawares and Shawnee, made this agreement with the understanding that the British military would leave the area after the war. The Indians wanted a trading post on the spot, but they did not want a British army garrison. The British, however, built Fort Pitt on the site, naming it after William Pitt the Elder.
As a result, in 1763 local Delawares and Shawnees took part in Pontiac’s Rebellion, an effort to drive the British from the region. The Indians’ siege of Fort Pitt began on June 22, 1763, but the fort was too strong to be taken by force. In negotiations during the siege, the commander of Fort Pitt gave two Delaware emissaries blankets that had been exposed to smallpox, in hopes of infecting the surrounding Indians and ending the siege. The attempt was probably unsuccessful, and on August 1, 1763, most of the Indians broke off the siege to intercept an approaching force under Colonel Henry Bouquet, resulting in the Battle of Bushy Run. Bouquet fought off the attack and relieved Fort Pitt on August 20.
After Pontiac’s War, Fort Pitt was no longer necessary to the British Crown, and was abandoned to the locals in 1772. At that time, the Pittsburgh area was claimed by both Virginia and Pennsylvania, and a power struggle for the region commenced. Virginians took control of Fort Pitt, and for a brief while in the 1770s it was called Fort Dunmore, in honor of Virginia’s Governor Lord Dunmore. The fort was a staging ground in Dunmore’s War of 1774.
During the American Revolutionary War, Fort Pitt was the headquarters for the western theatre of the war.
A small brick building called the Blockhouse—actually an outbuilding known as a redoubt—remains in Point State Park, the only intact remnant of Fort Pitt. It was erected in 1764, and is believed to be the oldest building, not only in Pittsburgh, but in Western Pennsylvania. Used for many years as a house, the blockhouse was purchased and has been preserved for many years by the Daughters of the American Revolution, who open it to the public.
There will probably be a few more visual changes to the look of this page as I hone what I want this place to express. Otherwise, it’ll be the same great content that you’ve come to expect. I hope you continue to enjoy everything that we bring to you, here at Three Rivers Philosophizer!
A big hat tip to Nick, for helping me pin down this new title.