Pittsburgh Suburbs: History of Glassport


A Brief History of Glassport


Glassport was originally part of Elizabeth Township before it was its own borough in Allegheny County. In 1902, it became its separate municipality at just over one and a half miles. The United States Glass Co., built in 1894, was the mill the town was built around. It quickly earned the nickname “The Glass House.” Glassport got its name from the Glassport Land Company. The U.S. Glass Company was located in the area, down near the Mon River on 7th St. The company, which specialized in pressed glass, tableware and other glass-related items, was damaged in a tornado. The 1963 storm ended up collapsing their 80-foot tower through the building’s roof. Furnaces shut down and all the liquid glass ended up hardening. There was a 250 ton block of solid glass that made things just too expensive and time consuming to rebuild.

Facts about Glassport


Former pro football player George Hays called the neighborhood his home. Also, current Steeler Jesse James hails from Glassport. The Mayor of Glassport (as of 2019)  is Keith DiMarco, whose term began in 2018. The borough is a total area of 1.9 square miles. In the 2012 and 2016 elections, most in Glassport voted Republican. Glassport reached peak population in 1940 with 8,748 people. It has since declined by half.

7 thoughts on “Pittsburgh Suburbs: History of Glassport”

  1. Dianne Hartwick Olinger

    Was this town ever referred to as “Otto”? Several of my ancestors named it as such in an old photo from abt. 1922.

    1. The section of town from 1st street, (near the old Glassport High School) down towards the Mansfield Bridge ( Going towards Mckeesport) was called Otto. Many still call it Otto. It is actually the FIRST WARD of town. There are 3 wards and each had its own grade school at one time.

  2. Albert J. Vasko

    George Hays had a little store behind the Broadway Roller Rink. Could get a half gallon of Neapolitan ice cream for 59 cents in the 50’s. He had a team picture in the store of him and the Steelers with leather helmets.

  3. James E. Edmundson, Sr.

    My family and extended family owned a lot of Port Vue and Glassport back in the 1800’s. Many of the streets are named after my relatives.

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