Carnegie Science Center’s Railroad Village reopens with new addition
Carnegie Science Center’s Miniature Railroad & Village reopens to the public Thursday with a new addition based on the cement houses in Donora.
The new historic model of Cement City is a collection of seven houses, one still under construction, with the town’s residents outside hosting a block party.
Cement City is an engineering feat by Thomas Edison that still stands today. The all concrete homes served as housing for employees of the American Steel and Wire Company. Construction of the houses began in 1916 to fill a rapidly growing housing need for employees.
Andrew Spate, an exhibit technician, worked on the addition with the Donora Historical Society, pouring over blueprints ensuring the smallest details of the houses are true to the actual cement houses.
The Carnegie Science Center’s exhibit traces its origins back to 1919 and Charles Bowdish, of Brockville. It has been at the Carnegie Science Center since 1992 and become one of the center’s staples. Among the favorites are replicas of Primanti Bros. in the Strip District, Forbes Field, Fallingwater, and Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood House.
Nate Smallwood is a Tribune-Review staff photographer.