Webster Hall from the Corner of Dithridge Street

Webster Hall

An oblique view of Webster Hall. And is that a bus coming toward us? Yes, it is.

Gargoyles of St. Paul’s

Look for them on the Fifth Avenue front of St. Paul’s Cathedral in Oakland.

Roof Ornaments, Soldiers and Sailors Memorial

Above, the distinctive grotesque eruption at the pinnacle of the pyramid roof. Below, the alternating eagles and torches of the cornice.

Negley-Gwinner-Harter House, Shadyside

This Second Empire mansion had a narrow escape: the third floor burned out in 1987, and the owner died the next year, leaving the house a derelict hulk. It was rescued from demolition at the last minute by serial restorationist Joedda Sampson, who painted it in her trademark polychrome style; it has since passed to other owners, whose pristine white also works well with the design. The house was built in 1871; Frederick Osterling worked on early-twentieth-century renovations and additions.

Third Presbyterian Church, Shadyside

The “chocolate church” at Fifth and Negley was designed by Theophilus P. Chandler Jr., whose name always sounds to old Pa Pitt like the villain in a Marx Brothers farce. Chandler worked mostly in Philadelphia, but he also designed First Presbyterian downtown and the Duncan mausoleum in the Union Dale Cemetery.