Ewart Building

The prolific Charles Bickel designed this well-balanced Romanesque building, two doors up from another one of his Romanesque creations on Liberty Avenue, the Maginn Building. Below we see both of them in context, with, of course, a bus coming toward us, because old Pa Pitt likes to do that.

Granite Building

A very-wide-angle view of the Granite Building, designed by the prolific and versatile Charles Bickel for a German bank. He has made use of every texture and shape of which granite is capable, and the result is a particularly lively, if perhaps a bit jumbled, rendering of German Romanesque.

You may notice some ghostly figures, including a spectral automobile, in the photograph. Father Pitt would love to be able to claim privileged access to the wonders of the invisible world, but in fact this is a composite photograph taken on a busy street, and people will continue to move even when they see an older gentleman in a cocked hat trying to take a composite picture.

The Granite Building is just across Wood Street from the Wood Street subway station.

Concordia Club

The Concordia Club was one of a number of fine clubs in Oakland; it lasted until 2009, when its building was sold to the University of Pittsburgh, which made it into the O’Hara Student Center. It was founded “to promote social and literary entertainment among its members,” and it seems always to have been a largely Jewish organization. Father Pitt does not know the details of the sale, but it took at least the club’s Web site by surprise. The site is frozen in 2009, with a calendar of events whose last entry is April 30, 2009: Annual Meeting and Dinner.

The building itself was designed by the prolific Charles Bickel, who could always be relied on to make the client proud.