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File #: 2011-1400    Version: 1
Type: Proclamation Status: Adopted
File created: 2/8/2011 In control: City Council
On agenda: Final action: 2/8/2011
Enactment date: 2/8/2011 Enactment #: 42
Effective date:    
Title: NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Council of the City of Pittsburgh does hereby commend Charles “Chuck” Austin for the work he continues to do on behalf of the City of Pittsburgh and internationally through his passion for music and preservation of history; BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Council of the City of Pittsburgh does hereby declare February 8, 2011 to be “Charles “Chuck” Austin Day” in the City of Pittsburgh, in the spirit of African American History Month.
Sponsors: R. Daniel Lavelle, All Members
Attachments: 1. 2011-1400.doc
WHEREAS, Charles “Chuck” Austin, a legendary African-American trumpet player and entertainer was born in Ben Avon, a small community just Northwest of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Mr. Austin sought his passion for music at a young age, and later through his friendship with John E. “Jack” Purcell of the Jack Purcell Orchestra. Mr. Purcell, a Pittsburgh musician, contractor, and member of Local 60-471 of the Pittsburgh Musical Society helped Mr. Austin find work at segregated clubs such as the Duquesne Club, and other venues throughout Pittsburgh and Fox Chapel early in his musical career; and,

WHEREAS, Charles “Chuck” Austin was a member of the Pittsburgh African American Musicians' Association, which was incorporated in Allegheny County in the Spring of 1906. Local 471 of the American Federation of Musicians was chartered in 1908 by the American Federation of Labor, which became the preeminent organization for securing many educational and economic opportunities for local musicians' and bands in Pittsburgh's African-American neighborhoods; and,

WHEREAS, Local 471 of the American Federation of Musicians' operated successfully and defined the jazz scene on Wylie Avenue in Pittsburgh's Hill District, until it was forced to destruction by the new Mellon Arena that displaced thousands of Hill District residents and businesses in the 1950's. Further dismay was brought on to Pittsburgh's African-American musicians' when a new AFL-CIO desegregation policy was enacted in 1965. Mr. Austin is one of the last surviving members of the original African-American Local 471 union, based in Pittsburgh's historical Hill District. This new policy called for the merger of Local 471 and the all-white Pittsburgh Local 60 Musicians' Union, in which many of the leadership positions remained in the hands of white musicians; and,

WHEREAS, Charles “Chuck” Austin, being a life member of Local 60-471, and a member of Local 471 until the merger in 1965, continues to uphold the le...

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