Rowhouses on Sarah Street, South Side

2330 Sarah Street

Sarah Street was the prime residential street of East Birmingham (the part of the South Side between 17th and 26th Streets), and it retains some of Pittsburgh’s most distinguished rowhouses. The one above is a splendidly eclectic mix—a bit of Italianate, a bit of Gothic, a bit of Second Empire. Note how much effort has gone into making interesting patterns in the bricks.

2112 Sarah Street

Here is another house in a similarly eclectic style. The parlor window is treated almost identically, but the upper floors vary the theme considerably.

Italianate house

This is not strictly a rowhouse, since it is detached from its neighbors by a narrow alley on each side; but since it is connected to those neighbors by a pair of gates, it is as near a rowhouse as makes no difference. This is a fine example of the Italianate style in a city house, and the owners have had some fun picking out the ornamental details with an unusual but effective paint scheme.

Pearl Street, Bloomfield

Pearl Street

The last rays of evening sun strike little rowhouses on Pearl Street in Bloomfield. This picture was taken in 1999, but except for the cars the view has changed very little. Bloomfield still has one of the city’s best collections of Kool Vent aluminum awnings.

One Block on the South Side

Brackets

What is there to see in one block of rowhouses on one back street on the South Side? Old Pa Pitt asked that question, and then got out a camera to answer it. Here are a few little details from the 2200 block of Sarah Street.

Doorway
Lintel
Lintel and bracket
Woodwork
Tiles
Window
Lintel
Woodwork
Brackets
Corinthian
Brackets

And, of course, because this is Pittsburgh…

Aluminum awnings

Kool-Vent awnings.

Spanish Mission Style in Schenley Farms

House on Bigelow Boulevard

Schenley Farms, the little enclave of quiet residential streets amid the bustle of the Oakland intellectual district, is an encyclopedia of housing styles from the early twentieth century. Here we have a very simple façade with elements of the Spanish Mission style: stucco (of course), an arcaded porch, tile roof, a little iron-railed balcony, and a design that turns inward, with more wall than window in front.

I-House in the West End

House in the West End

This well-preserved house from 1870 or 1876 (according to different sources) has kept its splendid Victorian ornamental woodwork. Architectural historians would call this an I-house, a standard variety of vernacular house very common in this part of Pennsylvania. Its form is very simple: two floors, each a central hall with a room on the left and a room on the right. Often, as on this house, more rooms are added on the back. For many years this house was used as the parsonage for the Methodist church next door.

I-house