Shady Avenue

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Shady Avenue
Neighborhoods Point Breeze, Shadyside, Squirrel Hill North, Squirrel Hill South
Origin of name Descriptive of the tree-lined country road

The original name was Shady Lane, a descriptive name for the tree-lined country road.[1] An early newspaper notice from 1866, advertising the auction of building lots on the lane, read, "No better or more desirable place for a home could be found than this same Shady Lane. Its very name has a pleasant quietness, indicative of the pleasantest possible hours."[2] In 1932, a person with the initials C. L. M. reminisced, "Coming down Shady lane was delightful; the tree branches were so close from opposite sides of the lane that they met and scraped your buggy or carriage tops. East Liberty then was a village out in the country."[3]

The change of name to Shady Avenue was criticized by Annie Clark Miller: "City Council orders new street markers for a street whose old fashioned name is a neighborhood treasure. Lane is not appropriate for a city thoroughfare in its opinion—and so overnight, old residenters of Shady Lane found themselves living on Shady Avenue."[4] Pittsburgh poet Hervey Allen sentimentally recalled his boyhood days in a poem called "When Shady Avenue Was Shady Lane."[5]


  1. Bob Regan. The Names of Pittsburgh: How the city, neighborhoods, streets, parks and more got their names. The Local History Company, Pittsburgh, 2009, ISBN 978-0-9770429-7-5, p. 73. [view source]regan
  2. "The Shady Lane home chance." Daily Post (Pittsburgh), May 7, 1866, p. 1. 91920255. [view source]shady-lane-home-chance
  3. Flashbacks. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Mar. 25, 1932, p. 8. 90084354. [view source]flashbacks-1932-03-25
  4. Annie Clark Miller. Early Land Marks and Names of Old Pittsburgh: An address delivered before the Pittsburgh Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution at Carnegie Institute, Nov. 30, 1923. Pittsburgh Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution, 1924, p. 39. Historic Pittsburgh 00awn8211m; Internet Archive earlylandmarksna00mill. [view source]miller
  5. Hervey Allen. Wampum and Old Gold. Yale University Press, New Haven, Conn., 1921. Google Books hp0VAAAAYAAJ. [view source]allen