Sunday, August 2, 2009

Powelton and the Pennsy

Powelton was the home for many employees of the Pennsylvania Railroad - both the top bosses and the general employees. In 1880, railroads employed about 6,000 workers in Philadelphia. About 100 lived in Powelton – about 10% of Powelton's male labor force. Although the 1880 census didn’t ask the name of employer, about a third in Powelton identified the Pennsy. The list includes a wide range of occupations including brakemen, conductors, dispatchers, and firemen. Several of the top officers were:
Charles Edmund Pugh who was the Second Vice President in charge of the Operating Department. He oversaw the handling of the over 3 million passengers who came to the 1876 Centennial Exhibition through the 32nd St. Station. He lived at 38th & Baring (1860), 3716 Baring (1870), and 3501 Baring (1880).
George W. I. Ball was Chief Conveyancer in charge of all real estate transactions and V.P. for Real Estate. He lived at 3410 Powelton (1890 and 1900).
Enoch Lewis, the head Purchasing Agent from 1866-1893, moved to 3405 Powelton about 1886 where he lived until his death in 1902.
William H Brown was chief engineer. His greatest accomplishment was the building of the Broad Street Station. He lived at 3601 Baring (1880) and 3510 Baring (1890 and 1900).
Patricius McManus- built the track system for the Centennial Exposition and the system of tracks leading into the Broad Street Station. He lived at 3512 Baring.
Powelton was particularly well situated for railroad employees because of its varied housing stock and its proximity to the train stations at 30th St., 32nd St., and the end of 35th St.

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