Joe Hammer Square

From Pittsburgh Streets
Joe Hammer Square
Neighborhood South Oakland
Origin of name Lt. Joseph Hammer
Elsinore Square (1900–1944)
Origin of name Estate of William Schmertz, named for the castle Elsinore in Hamlet

Joe Hammer Square is 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. Chris Potter. "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. [view source]joe-hammer
  2. Bob Regan. The Names of Pittsburgh: How the city, neighborhoods, streets, parks and more got their names, p. 60. The Local History Company, Pittsburgh, 2009, ISBN 978-0-9770429-7-5. [view source]regan
  3. George Swetnam. "Here in Pittsburgh." Pittsburgh Press, Sept. 29, 1947, p. 15. 149729673. [view source]swetnam