DISCOVER THE HISTORY
Visit Pittsburg and discover the history, fame, culture, and friendly atmosphere it offers. Find out why this small town is quickly the best-kept secret in Texas.
Lonnie "Bo" Pilgrim
Lonnie "Bo" Pilgrim founded Pilgrim's Pride which at one time was the largest chicken producer in the United States. In 1946 he opened a feed store (current home of The Anvil Brewery) with his older brother, Aubrey. He became the CEO of the company upon the death of his brother Aubrey in 1966. Bo was an extraordinary Christian businessman who credits God with his success. He built the beautiful Prayer Tower in downtown Pittsburg, a point of interest for most visitors.
Caroll Shelby was an American automotive designer, racing driver, and entrepreneur. Shelby is best known for his involvement with the AC Cobra and Mustang (later known as Shelby Mustangs) for Ford Motor Company, which he modified during the late 1960s and early 2000s. He established Shelby American Inc. in 1962 to manufacture and market performance vehicles, as well as Carroll Shelby Licensing in 1988 which grew into Caroll Shelby International.
James R. Cavender opened a small burger restaurant called the Dairy Hart in the small East Texas town of Pittsburg. Eight years later, Cavender decided to open a clothing store "Cavender & Smith's." A year later, Cavender bought out his partner and renamed the store as "Cavender's." By the mid-seventies, there were 5 Cavender's stores and by 1981 the name was changed to "Cavender's Boot City". The brand consists of over 80 stores, which sell traditional and modern-style hats, boots, clothing, and home décor.
In 1902, the Ezekiel Airship was flown in Pittsburg, Texas, a year before the Wright Flyer flew at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina. The flight took place in the presence of only a handful of witnesses who allegedly took an oath of silence. It is held at The Northeast Texas Rural Heritage Center and Museum which is located in a former Cotton Belt railroad depot that was built in 1901. It includes documents and photographs of local and regional historical interest, including artifacts that date from Pittsburg's foundation in 1854.
Byron and Kristin Aldredge have converted the long-shuttered Pilgrim's Pride Feed Store at 115 Compress in Pittsburg into the Anvil Brewing brewpub and dance hall. The 100-year-old building, vacant since 1961 was updated by the owners. The upstairs dance hall is 3,000 square feet can seat 273 customers. The Anvil Pub serves a variety of dishes, five craft beers on tap, and features live music Friday and Saturday nights.
The Prayer Tower, made of Indiana limestone with a Vermont slate roof, features a chapel and a 75-foot tower with four Paccard bells from France. It was dedicated to the city April 1992. The tower is surrounded with beautiful landscaping and a gurgling fountain and life-size bronze showing Jesus washing Peter's feet. This small chapel is open to the public and inside has three long pews and a prayer altar. Four stained glass windows depict various scenes of the life of Jesus. The bells chime and play hymns on the hour.