Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania

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Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania

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.

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High Points

Wilkinsburg strengths, compared to Peers (similar size places nationally) or State (other places in Pennsylvania):

Category Trophy
Public Transportation Use
(vs. Peers)
Top 1% trophy Wilkinsburg Public Transportation Use
Racial Diversity
(vs. State)
Top 9% Wilkinsburg Racial Diversity
Well-Paid Single Women
(vs. State)
Top 17% Wilkinsburg Well-Paid Single Women

Comparative Profile of Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania

Comparing Wilkinsburg to similar size places nationwide (Peers) and to other places in Pennsylvania (State):

Ratings range from 1 (lowest) to 10 (highest).

The People

Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Female Share of the Population 10 10
Well-Paid Single Women 7 9
Racial Diversity 7 10
Senior Citizens 7 4
Age of the Population 7 4
Children Under 5 Years Old 5 8
Well-Paid Single Men 4 4
Male Share of the Population 1 1


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Average Household Size 1 1
Portion of People Married 1 1


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
College Educated Adults 6 8
People Above Poverty 2 2
People in Middle Class or Better 2 2
Median Family Income 2 2

Commute & Sprawl

Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Public Transportation Use 10 10
Walking and Biking to Work 8 8
Working at Home 3 4
Short Commute Times 3 2


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
People Living Alone 10 10
Studio & One-Bedroom Rentals 10 10
Affordability of Rents 7 5
Affordability of Property Taxes 5 3
Seasonal and Vacation Housing 2 4
Housing Recently Built 2 7


Characteristic Compared
to Peers
to State
Low Property Crime 4 2
Low Violent Crime 1 1

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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
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Wilkinsburg Population (2000)

Category Count Percent
Total Population 19,196 100%
Male 8,439 44%
Female 10,757 56%
Under 18 4,485 23.4%
18+ 14,711 76.6%
65+ 3,039 15.8%
Median Age 37.8
Average Family Size 2.91
White 5,615 29.3%
African-American 12,768 66.5%
Asian 156 0.8%
American Indian & Alaskan 72 0.4%
Other 105 0.5%
Mixed Race 468 2.4%
Hispanic (included in categories above) 216 1.1%

Estimated Wilkinsburg Population Growth 2000-2005

Category Value
Est. 2005 Population 18,008
Growth -1,188
Growth % -6.2%

Wilkinsburg Ancestry

(From 2000 Census, as reported by individuals)

Note: This is national, not racial, ancestry, so, e.g., the Census doesn't have categories for Hispanic and African-American people. CityTownInfo is currently gathering additional ancestry data for this site.
Ancestry Percent
Other (often includes Hispanic and African American) 66.8%
German 6.2%
Italian 5%
Irish 4.1%
English 2.9%
African 2.9%
US/American 2.1%
Polish 1.3%
Scotch-Irish 1%
Slovak 0.8%
Hungarian 0.6%
Scottish 0.5%
Lithuanian 0.5%
French (except Basque) 0.4%
Greek 0.4%
Russian 0.4%
Jamaican 0.4%
Croatian 0.3%
Welsh 0.3%
Czechoslovakian 0.3%
Eastern European 0.2%
Moroccan 0.2%
European 0.2%
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Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Pop. Median Family
Income (2000)
Wilkinsburg 19,196 $33,412
Braddock Hills 1,998 $40,517
Churchill 3,566 $74,969
Forest Hills 6,831 $56,199
Homewood 147 $52,500
Rankin 2,315 $18,625
Swissvale 9,653 $35,929

Wilkinsburg Public Libraries

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

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Featured Colleges in the Wilkinsburg Area (QuickSchools™)

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Wilkinsburg High Schools (2004)

Serves 362 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 13.7

Wilkinsburg Colleges

(List of Pennsylvania Colleges)

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Limit Results to One State?

City, State Similarity   1 Person Houses 65+ College Grads Commute Minutes Family Income Kids 0-4 Non White Pop. Poverty Prop. Crime Seasonal Housing Viol. Crime
      loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose loose
1. Swissvale, Pennsylvania 89   42.1% 17.4% 24.8% 26 $35,929 5.7% 25.5% 9,653 15.3% 30.3 0.2% 4.3
2. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 86.4   33.8% 14.1% 17.9% 33 $37,036 6.5% 55% 1,517,550 22.9% 40.2 0.3% 13.8
3. Union City, Georgia 80.4   37.4% 13.5% 18.9% 31 $39,697 7.4% 74.6% 11,621 12.1% 78.8 0.3% 7.1
4. Dunn, North Carolina 76.7   32.6% 18.4% 16.8% 24 $39,521 6.8% 45.4% 9,196 23.5% 73.4 0.2% 11.7
5. Guthrie, Oklahoma 74.1   31.9% 17.7% 14.4% 26 $38,732 6.4% 24.2% 9,925 17.3% 40.2 0.4% 6.3
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