Father Pitt

Why should the beautiful die?

St. Paul’s Cathedral School, Oakland

St. Paul’s Cathedral School

Built in 1907, this Jacobean palace was the work of John T. Comès. We happen to know that it was roofed with McClure’s Genuine Charcoal Iron Re-Dipped Roofing Tin, because in a 1910 advertisement that company proudly reproduced the architect’s perspective rendering of the building:

Architect’s perspective rendering of St. Paul’s Cathedral School

Notice in the rendering that Comès has drawn sections of tapestry brick, which is typical of his work—if he was going to use brick, he was going to use it to its full decorative potential. Either he was overruled by the client or he changed his mind, because the building as it stands is just ordinary red brick in Flemish stretcher bond, with stone trim for decoration.


The building is now the St. Joan of Arc Building of Oakland Catholic High School, and the Trib has a story from 2013 about the renovations to the St. Joan of Arc Building to bring it into the early twenty-first century.

Detail of a niche
Perspective view with clouds

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