Sidney Street

From Pittsburgh Streets
Sidney Street
Neighborhood South Side Flats
Origin of name Sidney Ormsby Page

Sidney Street is named for Sidney Ormsby Page (1806–1880), daughter of Oliver Ormsby (1767–1832) and granddaughter of John Ormsby (1720–1805).[1][2][3] She married John Harding Page (1804–1871) in 1825, and they lived in a house called "The Dingle" on a tract of land between South 21st and South 24th Streets.[4][5][6][7][8]:32

Other South Side streets are named after Oliver Ormsby's other daughters: Sarah Street, Jane Street, Mary Street, and Josephine Street. See Ormsby Street for more about the Ormsby family.

Some sources imply that the street was named for Sidney Ormsby Gregg (born 1774), daughter of John Ormsby, by Dr. Nathaniel Bedford (eponym of Bedford Avenue), who in 1811 laid out the town of Birmingham, today the portion of the South Side between South Sixth and South 17th Streets. Bedford had married Sidney's sister Jane, and it is said that he named the streets in Birmingham after his late wife and her sisters.[9][10][11][12][13] But this origin is unlikely. John Ormsby had only two daughters, Jane and Sidney,[6][8]:19 so this does not explain the names of the parallel Sarah, Mary, and Josephine Streets. Ed Vidunas points out that the streets with women's names were in East Birmingham (east of South 17th Street), not Birmingham (west of South 17th).[14] Josephine Street is particularly compelling: the first Josephine in the Ormsby family, Josephine Blakeney Ormsby, was not born until 1823, five years after Dr. Bedford's death.[8]:42


  1. Ruth Ayers. "Do you know this place—?: Ormsby estate on South Side now cluttered with tenements: Old mansion now only part of overcrowded district: Horses once raced where children romp and play now." Pittsburgh Press, Aug. 16, 1934, p. 21. 146695755. [view source]ayers-do-you-know
  2. Flashbacks. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Feb. 21, 1933, p. 8. 90310579. [view source]flashbacks
  3. "Tales of old times: When the Southside was a small village amid the woodlands: Memoirs of early residents: The neglected grave of the founder of Birmingham borough: The first church, school and mill." Pittsburg Dispatch, Mar. 1, 1890, second part, p. 9. 76218651. [view source]tales
  4. Leland D. Baldwin. Pittsburgh: The story of a city, p. 246. University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh, 1937. HathiTrust 001263101. [view source]baldwin
  5. Stuart P. Boehmig. Pittsburgh's South Side, p. 8. Images of America. Arcadia Publishing, Charleston, S. C., 2006, ISBN 978-0-7385-3939-3. LCCN 2005932359. [view source]boehmig
  6. 6.0 6.1 Walter T. Kamprad. "John Ormsby, Pittsburgh's original citizen." Western Pennsylvania Historical Magazine, vol. 23, no. 4, Dec. 1940, pp. 203–222. [view source]kamprad
  7. Annie Clark Miller. "Old houses and estates in Pittsburgh." Western Pennsylvania Historical Magazine, vol. 9, no. 3, July 1926, pp. 129–168. [view source]old-houses
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Oliver Ormsby Page. A Short Account of the Family of Ormsby of Pittsburgh. Joel Munsell's Sons, Albany, N. Y., 1892. Internet Archive ashortaccountfa00pagegoog, shortaccountoffa00page; [view source]ormsby
  9. E. W. Hassler. "Dr. Bedford's gift: The site of the Southside market house came from the old settler: He was prominent and wealthy: Owned much land south of the Monongahela river: His grave on Mount Oliver." Pittsburgh Post, June 18, 1893, p. 9. 87578785. Cut and pasted in [Pennsylvania county histories], vol. 3 (Allegheny County), pp. 118–121 (Internet Archive pennsylvaniacoun03unse_0), an untitled scrapbook of newspaper clippings from the State Library of Pennsylvania, call number 974.8 P38611. [view source]bedfords-gift
  10. "Birmingham borough: How it was founded—interesting historical incidents recalled." Pittsburg Press, Mar. 22, 1896, p. 14. 141573294. [view source]birmingham-borough
  11. Franklin Toker. Pittsburgh: An urban portrait, p. 132. Pennsylvania State University Press, University Park, Penna., 1986, ISBN 0-271-00415-0. LCCN 85-71786. [view source]toker
  12. Chris Potter. "My husband recently got a job on the South Side, and we noticed there are a lot of streets named after women. How come?" You Had to Ask. Pittsburgh City Paper, Dec. 29, 2005. [view source]south-side-women
  13. Franklin Toker. Pittsburgh: A new portrait, p. 160. University of Pittsburgh Press, Pittsburgh, 2009, ISBN 978-0-8229-4371-6. LCCN 2009022903. [view source]toker-new
  14. Ed Vidunas and "John Ormsby family: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15203." Pittsburgh Brewers: Every brewery ever in Pittsburgh, June 20, 2020.; archived at [view source]vidunas-ormsby