Wissahickon Nature Club       2012


The Wissahickon Story

One summer day in 1942, a group of nature lovers studying trees and shrubs in Riverview Park on the Northside in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania,  were met by John F. Lewis, then a guest naturalist at the park, who asked if he could be of help.  That meeting resulted in a class on tree and shrub identification at the Wissahickon Trailside Museum in the park. Mr. Lewis, who was a professor of Biology and General Science at California State Teachers College, conducted the class.  With his help and encouragement the Wissahickon Nature Club was formed that summer under the auspices of the Pittsburgh Department of Parks and Recreation, Nature Division.  The club was named for the Trailside Museum and for Wissahickon Creek, which runs through the park.  Wissahickon is an Indian word meaning Catfish.

The club met weekly; in the winter at the museum with lessons on many nature subjects; in the spring and summer, in the park for first-hand nature study.

The Wissahickon Nature Club now hosts meetings bi-weekly from September into May at the Fern Hollow Nature Center in Sewickley.  Members and guest speakers present Nature exhibits. In addition, field excursions are scheduled on a monthly basis to various locations in the Pittsburgh area. Wissahickon also partners with other nature oriented organizations for special events and outings.

Wissahickon is the only general nature club in the Pittsburgh area.  Every member has something to contribute, and the sharing of the diverse knowledge, experience and talents of the members is the unique value of the club.

The Wissahickon Nature Club provides an inspirational forum for nature enthusiasts to enhance their knowledge and appreciation of natural history through programs and fellowship.