Pittsburgh Streets

Joe Hammer Square

Neighborhood: South Oakland

Named for Joseph Hammer, a lieutenant in the U. S. Army in the Second World War, who grew up on the street and was killed in action in the south of France on September 11, 1944. From 1900 to 1944 the street was known as Elsinore Square, the name of an estate owned by William Schmertz that had previously occupied the site. That name comes from the castle Elsinore, the main setting of Shakespeare’s tragedy Hamlet (see also Hamlet Street and Ophelia Street).[1, 2, 3]


[1]Potter, Chris. “Where did ‘Joe Hammer Square’ in Oakland get its name, especially when the nearby streets are named after Shakespeare characters?” Pittsburgh City Paper, Feb. 10, 2005. https://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/Content?oid=1337560.

[2]Regan, Bob. The Names of Pittsburgh: How the city, neighborhoods, streets, parks and more got their names. The Local History Company, Pittsburgh, 2009, p. 60. ISBN 978-0-9770429-7-5.

[3]Swetnam, George. “Here in Pittsburgh.” Pittsburgh Press, Sept. 29, 1947, p. 15. Newspapers.com 149729673.