The two sides of this duplex, which probably dates from the 1870s or 1880s, have gone their separate ways, but the whole building is well preserved. The demolition of a badly mutilated house next door gives us a chance to appreciate some of the details on the side of the house.
This rear view shows us a very inartistic addition to the third floor of one side, which is fortunately invisible from the front.
Above is the old Carron Street Baptist Church, which as you might guess is on Carron Street. It has not been a church for quite a while, and it has gone through some substantial alterations on its way to becoming a garage, so old Pa Pitt is not quite sure whether it ought to be added to the collection of churches with the sanctuary upstairs, or whether it simply had a high basement. (Update: The answer is that it had a high basement. The church was designed by the Beezer Brothers, and we have found the architects’ original rendering.)
From the church that became a garage we walk just about a block to the garage that became a high-class furniture store.
This was the South Highland Garage, and as a work of architecture it is probably more distinguished than the Carron Street Baptist Church ever was. If you like, you may formulate your own sarcasm about the true American religion and our fitting sense of architectural priorities. But then you can remember that Calvary Episcopal Church and Sacred Heart are just a short stroll away, and your sarcasm will wither on your tongue.
This classical building was designed (in 1896) by architect William Ross Proctor to preside over this corner as if it owned both streets. By placing the entrance at the corner, Mr. Proctor refuses to decide whether the building is on Centre or Highland. “Both,” says that entrance.
Look up as you pass to appreciate the elaborate detail of the cornice.
These three attached units were originally named Howard, Delaware, and Norfolk, and you can still barely make out the ghosts of those names above the three entrances. They were built in 1901.
Two of the three units have had their balconies filled in, apparently to make closets, judging by the floor plans on the Mozart Management page for the Eaglemoor. The third is almost certainly what all three originally looked like.
Some paint is being touched up along the side.
Update: A correspondent with inside information mentions that the new paint job is meant to return the apartments to something like their original appearance. (We’ll have to come back soon to see the results.) The balconies did indeed turn into closets many years ago.
Mozart Management has two tours of this building on YouTube:
Flemish Renaissance is not the most common style in Pittsburgh; this is certainly one of our most splendid examples of it. It is one of the surviving millionaires’ mansions on Highland Avenue. Father Pitt’s identification of it as the Elliott–Fownes house is based on two sources. The application for the neighborhood’s historic-district designation in the National Register of Historic Places mentions it as the home of “machine politician Robert Elliott”; a 1912 book has Henry C. Fownes, founder of the Oakmont Country Club, at this address.