Introduction to Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania

Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania, in Allegheny county, is 6 miles E of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Part of the surrounding Pittsburgh metro area, the town is not isolated and is home to some 19,196 residents.

Wilkinsburg History

Dunning McNair, who arrived in 1788 and constructed a log cabin, planned a village which came to be known as "McNairstown". Samuel A. Rippey and his wife established the Rippey's Tavern in the early 1800s. Over the years, this tavern became so popular that people began to refer to the area itself as "Rippeysville". By the 1810s, the region's name had changed again. According to some historians, the place was christened "Wilkinsburgh" in honor of Judge William Wilkins, who served as President Tyler's Secretary of War. However, according to another tradition, the community was named after John Wilkins, Jr., Judge Wilkins' brother who served in the Revolutionary War and later became the Brigadier General of the Allegheny County militia. By the 1870s, the town had separated from the city of Pittsburgh and was incorporated on October 5, 1887. In 1893, the town was officially named "Wilkinsburg". Because many Protestant churches are located in the town, it is commonly referred to as "The Holy City".

Wilkinsburg and Nearby Attractions

  • Old Economy Historical Site
  • Carnegie Museum of Natural History
  • Westmoreland Museum of American Art
  • National Aviary
  • Point State Park
  • Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium

Things To Do In Wilkinsburg

Wilkinsburg is home to numerous parks and recreational areas including the Hunter Park, Taylor Park, Whitney Park, and Park Avenue Park. The area is also known for its high concentration of churches and other places of worship like the Wilkinsburg Baptist Church, Shaare Torah Congregation, and Prince Hall Masonic Temple. The Westmoreland Museum of American Art, Carnegie Museum of Natural History, Pennsylvania Trolley Museum, and Frick Art & Historical Center showcase artifacts reflecting the region's natural, historical, and cultural heritage. Old Economy Historical Site, Bushy Run Battlefield, Rachel Carson Homestead, and Clayton - Henry Clay Frick Estate are historic sites located within 20 miles of Wilkinsburg. National Aviary, another popular attraction in the area, is home to more than 500 endangered and exotic birds.

Wilkinsburg Transportation

Air transportation is available from Pittsburgh International Airport.

Wilkinsburg Higher Education

Nearby colleges include the Carnegie Mellon University, University of Pittsburgh, Community College of Allegheny County, and Chatham College.


Total Population 15,866
Male Share of the Population 45.1%
Female Share of the Population 54.9%
Senior Citizens 16.2%
Employed Population 16+ 7,186
Age of the Population 40


% of people married 23.2%
Average household size 2

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 30.7%
Median Earnings25+ $0
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $0
Median Earnings With High School Degree $0


Median Family Income $37,607
% Above Poverty Level 75.9%
% Below Poverty Level 24.1%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 29 minutes
% Working from Home 6.4%
% Walking and Biking to Work 5.4%
% Using Public Transportation 30%


People Living Alone 48.9%
Median Gross Rent $753
Median House Value $72,800


Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 49.8%
US/American 0%
English 4%
Irish 7.3%

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Wilkinsburg Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 6 miles E of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
County Allegheny
Metro Area Pittsburgh
Standard Zip Codes 15221
Phone Area Codes 412
Time Zone Eastern (-5 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 40.441
Longitude -79.882

Wilkinsburg Climate

Nearest Weather Stations


  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Distance 7.5 miles
Jan Temp 20 to 37 F
Apr Temp 38 to 62 F
Jul Temp 62 to 85 F
Oct Temp 41 to 64 F
Annual Precip 37.7 inches
Distance 15.4 miles
Jan Temp 17 to 36 F
Apr Temp 37 to 61 F
Jul Temp 60 to 83 F
Oct Temp 41 to 64 F
Annual Precip 39 inches
Station SALINA 3 W
Distance 18.2 miles
Jan Temp 15 to 37 F
Apr Temp 33 to 61 F
Jul Temp 57 to 83 F
Oct Temp 37 to 64 F
Annual Precip 41.3 inches

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Braddock Hills 1,733 $70,500
Churchill 3,009 $101,364
Forest Hills 6,491 $92,411
Homewood 101 $49,375

Source: American Community Survey, U.S. Census Bureau, 2015, www.census.gov/programs-surveys/acs/.

Wilkinsburg Public Libraries

Wilkinsburg Public Library
Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania
(412) 244-2940

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More Information for Librarians

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Wilkinsburg High Schools

Serves 362 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 13.7

Study Online in Wilkinsburg

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Info for Wilkinsburg Government Officials

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