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Searching for Dream Street is an ongoing photographic expedition to document the status of the old steel towns along the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio rivers within approximately 40 miles of Pittsburgh, Pa.
Since the collapse of the steel industry in the United States in the 1980s, these towns, like most steel towns across the country, have suffered crippling economic hardships. Not only did the jobs leave with the mills, but the towns’ tax bases of the towns were also decimated.
The result has been over 25 years of high unemployment, poverty, crime and crumbling infrastructure. While a few of these communities have managed to overcome these obstacles, they are still not the bustling economic boom towns they once were.
The goal of this project is to photograph these towns and their people, illustrating the problems they continue to face and bring their stories to the forefront. The hope is to incite political action and financial investment to help bring these communities back to their former glory.
For more information about the steel industry as it relates to the Pittsburgh area visit the Recommended Reading page.
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Click the link below to subscribe to occasional email updates and news about Searching for Dream Street.
License Images From This Project for Editorial Use
Publications and organizations looking to license images from this project should contact the photographer using the form on this site. A full set of images (more being added regularly) from the project can be found here: Searching for Dream Street Archive.
The photographer is also available for assignment work in any of the towns that the project covers or those within the immediate geographic area.
Contact the Photographer
If you have any suggestions for the project or concerns about this website and the accuracy of its content, please use the CONTACT FORM to send me a note. I am always on the lookout for people and places to photograph in these old mill towns. When doing this type of work, it is always the people I meet who provide the great leads to more of the story.
About the Photographer
Award-winning photojournalist Pete Marovich is a freelance photographer based in the Washington, D.C., metro area.
Pete has been a professional photographer for 30 years, since starting as a staff photographer at a medium-sized daily newspaper in Indiana and as a stringer for the Associated Press.
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From 1986 to 1999, Pete worked as a contract photographer for major golf publications, while covering the professional golf tours. His work has been published in Sports Illustrated, Golf Magazine, Golf Digest, GolfWeek, Golf Tips and many international golf publications.
Pete returned to newspaper photojournalism in 2001. He became director of photography at the Daily News-Record, a medium-sized daily newspaper in Virginia, in 2005.
While at the DN-R, Pete was named the 2008 NPPA Region 3 Photographer of the year, as well as runner-up in 2006 and 2009. Region 3 includes Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia.
Images from his coverage of the 2009 Presidential Inauguration were included in “Barack Obama: The Official Inaugural Book” and are now in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Museum of American History.
In January of 2010, Pete became a full-time freelance photographer, pursuing personal projects while working as a contract photographer for ZUMA Press.
From 2010 until 2013, Pete was the Washington D.C. Bureau Chief for ZUMA Press, covering the White House and Capitol Hill.
Pete is currently contributes to Bloomberg News Photos, McClatchy, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Getty Images, European PressPhoto Agency, United Press International, NBCnews.com, SIPA Press and other news outlets. His archive is represented by CORBIS.
Pete’s photography has appeared in Time, The New York Times, Newsweek, The Financial Times, The Christian Science Monitor, Esquire, The Wall Street Journal, Mother Jones, Sports Illustrated, Woman’s World, The Huffington Post, Politico, Essence, Bloomberg Businessweek, The Chronicle of Higher Education, The Daily Beast and other news publications worldwide.
Pete lives in the Washington, D.C., metro area with his wife, Jenny, and their two cats.
He is available for editorial assignments nationwide.