Kaufmann's Downtown store memorialized with street sign

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City of Pittsburgh officials and the Kaufmann's family ceremonially renamed one corner of Smithfield Street and Fifth Avenue today, posting a sign declaring the Downtown spot "Kaufmann Way."

The designation won't change any street addresses but is meant to honor the Kaufmann family, which in 1871 founded the department store chain of the same name that was headquartered Downtown. It became part of May Department Stores, which was bought by Federated Department Stores in 2005. A year later, Federated eliminated several former May brand names, including Kaufmann's, turning their locations into Macy's stores.

That change rendered old sayings like "Meet me under Kaufmann's clock" out of date. Now, the landmark clock is a few steps from the new street sign.

Mayor Luke Ravenstahl attended the morning ceremony, which followed by a few weeks the birthday of John Morris Wolf, Sr., age 88, whose grandfather was one of the store's founders.

"Our family, its history in southwestern Pennsylvania and Pittsburgh, is something we are extremely proud of, and we thank the mayor for honoring our ancestry in this way," said Julie Arnheim, a member of the Kaufmann family.


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