Tag: Domestic Architecture

  • Renaissance Style in Schenley Farms

    Renaissance palace in Schenley Farms

    Though Tudor was the most popular style in Schenley Farms, there are other styles as well, and there are several fine Italian Renaissance palaces in the neighborhood.

    The same
    Another Renaissance house
    Oblique view
    With fine tile roof
    Ornament
    Brick Renaissance
  • The Tudor Style in Schenley Farms

    Tudor house in Schenley Farms

    The Tudor style was very popular for large houses in Pittsburgh in the early twentieth century, and in Schenley Farms, that exceptional enclave of exceptionally fine houses in the Oakland medical-intellectual district, it is the single most popular style. The hallmark of the style is half-timbering: exposed wooden beams with stucco (or some such material) between them. Here is a random selection of Tudor houses; we’ll see more of them shortly, since, with the leaves gone for the winter, now is the time to get pictures of the houses behind the trees.

    Another Tudor house, this one with light brick
    This one has quite a bit of half-timbering
    Tudor house on a hill
    Postwar Tudor

    This last house is an interesting example of the survival of the style into the middle twentieth century: it is later than most of its neighbors, and probably dates from the 1930s at the earliest, but it adapts the Tudor style to a lower budget and more modest size.

  • Henry Chalfant House, Allegheny West

    Chalfant Hall

    Now Chalfant Hall of the Community College of Allegheny County, and currently getting a thorough renovation. The house was built in about 1900; no one seems to know who the architect was. Henry Chalfant was a successful lawyer whose father was a successful lawyer as well.

    Front
    Detail
  • Trinity A. M. E. Church, Hill

    Trinity A. M. E. Church

    A modest church from 1925 in an unusual Spanish Mission style. That style was very popular for houses and apartments in the 1920s, but in Pittsburgh it is seldom found in churches.

    The well-preserved, though somewhat bedraggled, Italianate house next door is also worth noting.

    Trinity AME Church and Italianate house
  • Eclectic House on Aylesboro Avenue, Squirrel Hill

    A little bit Georgian with a hint of Gothic, this house is oddly eclectic in its details but harmonizes them well.

  • House on Northumberland Street, Squirrel Hill

    House on Northumberland Street

    Something like a Pittsburgh foursquare stretched into a Renaissance palace, this house prefers simple dignity to ostentatious ornament.

    Oblique view
  • Second Empire Houses on Sarah Street, South Side

    Second Empire houses

    Two Second Empire rowhouses whose upper floors are fairly well preserved. The one on the right has had some adventures on the ground floor, possibly including a storefront at some point. Note the wooden shingles on the house on the left.

  • Victorian Row on Sarah Street, South Side

    A fine block of rowhouses on the north side of Sarah Street.

  • Victorian Row on Grandview Avenue

    1880 row on Grandview Avenue

    Built in 1880, this row of modest townhouses has been altered a bit to take advantage of the view, but retains much of its ornamental woodwork.

  • The Wigman House and Its Neighbor, Carrick

    Wigman House

    The Wigman House, at the corner of Brownsville Road and the Boulevard, Carrick, is a splendid example of Victorian woodwork, and it will not surprise you to discover that it was built for a prosperous lumber dealer. Carrick is very proud of this house, which some years ago was rescued from possible demolition. “This is our Crown Jewel Victorian and is the last standing example of our past,” says the Carrick-Overbrook Wiki on a page last edited in 2013. “Because the popularity of high Queen Anne Style waned in the early 1900s this house is the only example of that architectural style existing in the immediate area.” The page reprints a 2010 article by Diana Nelson-Jones from the Post-Gazette, which repeats the claim, calling the house “the last of the grand Victorians remaining on the main drag.”

    But old Pa Pitt is delighted to report that this is not so. In fact the Wigman House’s neighbor three doors up Brownsville Road is older, larger, and also Queen Anne in style.

    Neighbor of the Wigman House

    This is not a very good picture, and old Pa Pitt will try to do better the next time. But you can see what Father Pitt immediately noticed when he glanced at the house from across the street in the South Side Cemetery: the unmistakable shape of a Queen Anne mansion. The third floor has been altered a bit; that gable would have had some ornate woodwork, probably some curved surfaces with wood shingles, and possibly a balcony (note, in the shadows to the left, the charming little side balcony on the third floor). But the typical Queen Anne outline of this fine brick Victorian has not changed since it was built. Some relatively minor restorations in that third-floor gable would bring back all its Victorian splendor.

    The Wigman House was built in 1902, according to the wiki page. The brick house above was built in the 1880s; it appears on the 1890 maps of Carrick.

    Of course the Wigman House, with its corner turret and well-preserved woodwork, is a remarkable house. But it is a great pleasure to point out its distinguished older neighbor to the history-lovers of Carrick.

    Wigman House again