Pittsburgh Theatrical Protective Assembly, Local No.3
Written By Brother Will Dennis
Pittsburgh, the birthplace of the American trade union movement
gave birth to many of the nation's union organizations.
Among these pioneer labor organizations was thePittsburgh Theatrical Protective Assembly.
During these early days Pittsburgh's theaters were the Grand, Alvin, Nixon,
Gayety, Barry, Duquesne, and Carnegie Music Hall to name a few.
The legacy of the Pittsburgh Theatrical Protective Assembly, Local #3,
of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employes, Motion Picture Technicians,
Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, its Territories and Canada, A.F.L.-C.I.O., C.L.C.
began when a handful of men formed the Pittsburgh Theatrical Protective Assembly.
On August 7, 1887 the Pittsburgh Theatrical Protective Assembly
affiliated themselves with the Knights of Labor.
Over the years they developed a reputation as a strong union,
loyal to the original principals of the Knights of Labor.
The Pittsburgh Theatrical Protective Assembly was instrumental in the
formation of a national stagehands union and on July 17, 1893
the first meeting of the National Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employes was
opened by Pittsburgh's John Gallagher, later referred to as "The father of the I.A."
In the century to follow Local #3 has contributed to the beginnings of
many of our community's performing arts organizations such as the
Pittsburgh Symphony, Pittsburgh Opera, Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera,
Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, Pittsburgh Public Theater, Pittsburgh Cultural Trust and others.
Local #3 stagehands have operated lighting equipment, set scenery,
and transformed stages into imaginative scenes of beauty, wonder and technical excellence
for all types of theatrical presentation.
From the glory days of the Gayety, the Stanley, and the Loews Penn to the
renewed heyday of the Byham, the Benedum Center, and Heinz Hall,
the names of the theaters may have changed.
Nevertheless the stagehands of Local #3 have maintained the
quality of entertainment enjoyed by the citizens of Pittsburgh.