Tag: Black Stones

  • A Black Stone Survivor: First Methodist, Knoxville

    Solid Rock Church

    Few of these black stone buildings are left, but in some of the less prosperous neighborhoods we can still find uncleaned stones. Knoxville is a particularly interesting neighborhood from the point of view of the urban archaeologist: it was prosperous and now is not, so it retains some splendid buildings in their original state, many of them sadly abandoned and decaying. This church, marked “1st Meth. Prot. Ch.” on a 1916 map, is still in use as a nondenominational church, and old Pa Pitt very selfishly hopes that the congregation always sits at that middle point where it has enough money to keep the doors open and not enough to clean the black stones.

    First Methodist Protestant Church
    First Methodist, Knoxville
  • Sixth Presbyterian Church, Squirrel Hill, in 1994

    Sixth Presbyterian

    One of the many black stone buildings that still remained in Pittsburgh in the 1990s. Like almost all the others, Sixth Presbyterian has since been cleaned and restored to its original color.

    Father Pitt has always wondered why the Presbyterians kept numbering their churches. “First Presbyterian” is an honorable distinction. “Fifth Presbyterian” just sounds tired. And then why stop at six? There is a Seventh Presbyterian in Cincinnati, for example.