Part one: History of Westinghouse R&D in Churchill Borough
In trying to find out history about Westinghouse online, most of it is within the last several years or goes back to the turn of the century, almost nothing in between. Luckily, I found an academic book that was easy to read; filling in the missing time frame 1950 to 1980 when Churchill Borough had its greatest growth. It is called Nuclear Suburbs.
Here is a link to Chapter 4 which is what you would be interested in reading: https://www.churchillfuture.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/The-Monroeville-Doctrine.pdf.
It can be purchased here for $18 with the discount code MN87250: https://www.upress.umn.edu/book-division/books/nuclear-suburbs
In researching his study on the role of dedicated R&D centers in the renaissance of Pittsburgh just after the Second World War, Patrick Vitale uncovered interesting details and comments on how and why Westinghouse selected Churchill as the location for its research and development complex.
In fact, he devoted an entire chapter to Churchill. He has graciously given us permission to quote this chapter so that residents have a better understanding of the early history. You will find it among other articles on Churchillfuture.com. Unfortunately, you will also find my pencil marks from the first read, prior to considering it for the site.
Because of his personal connection to the Pittsburgh area, he has also provided a code for a discounted price direct from the publisher, the University of Minnesota. Unlike the $30 I paid to Amazon, his code will get you the book for just $18. It is on the site as well.
It is amazing what a hotbed Pittsburgh was in the early development of nuclear energy. He also reviews in detail the Bettis operation which continues to do active defense-related research, especially for the navy.
I just post one book review along with the full chapter for a quick and easy read as well as the discount purchase code.
From submarines to the suburbs—the remaking of Pittsburgh during the Cold War
Using oral histories, Patrick Vitale follows nuclear engineers and scientists throughout and beyond the Pittsburgh region to understand how the politics of technoscience and the Cold War were embedded in daily life. Offering lessons for the present day, Nuclear Suburbs explains how the “renewal” of industrial regions into centers of the tech economy is rooted in violence and injustice.
Forget Silicon Valley, Google buses, and loft living in San Francisco. As Patrick Vitale shows in his deeply researched and compellingly written book, postwar American high-tech begins in gritty Steel City, Pittsburgh. Its workers are not today’s multi-ethnic, collarless class making social media but white men wearing pressed white shirts, living in suburban tract housing, making the Bomb. High-tech becomes something quite different: politically conservative, socially exclusive, and rather sinister.
Trevor J. Barnes, University of British Columbia