Father Pitt

Why should the beautiful die?

The Original Mellon Institute

Allen Hall

The Mellon Institute of Industrial Research was founded as part of the University of Pittsburgh, and this was its home for the first two decades of its life. When the Mellon Institute declared its independence, it moved to its palatial quarters out Fifth Avenue, and the old Mellon Institute building became Allen Hall at the University of Pittsburgh.

The building, which opened in 1915, was designed by J. H. Giesy, and it was properly classical to match Henry Hornbostel’s slightly mad plan of making the University a new Athenian Acropolis in Pittsburgh. (The plan was later abandoned in favor of Charles Z. Klauder’̑s much madder plan of a skyscraper university.)

Bronze door

The richly detailed bronze doors are unique.

View from Thackeray Street

The building is precisely located for the best vista up Thackeray Street.

Here is a picture of the building when it was new in 1915:

Mellon Institute in 1915

And old Pa Pitt has duplicated that picture for you in 2022, because that is the kind of effort he puts into serving his readers:

Allen Hall today

Nothing about the exterior has changed except the plantings, and even those have been reduced to show off the building: a few years ago much of the front was obscured by trees.

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