Victorian House on South 18th Street

House on South 18th Street

This is the kind of eclectic mess twentieth-century architects meant when they vigorously condemned everything “Victorian.” You can hardly pin it down to any historical style. That would probably identify it as “Queen Anne,” the term for Victorian domestic architecture that is a hodgepodge of every historical style, with strange angles thrown in for added picturesque effect. And to those twentieth-century architects, old Pa Pitt has only this to say: this house is a lot more attractive and a lot more pleasant to live in than anything you came up with.

Observatory Hill in 2000

Three pictures taken with a Russian Lubitel twin-lens-reflex camera in January of 2000. Very little has changed in 21 years. Above, the Byzantine Catholic Seminary, a building that is a strange mix of modernist and classical elements with an onion dome.

The Byzantine metropolitan’s residence. In the Latin Rite, Pittsburgh is not even an archdiocese, but in the Byzantine Rite, Pittsburgh is the seat of an archeparchy covering eleven states.

A typical Observatory Hill house on Riverview Avenue, one of the neighborhood’s most attractive streets.

Martin’s Cabin

Martin’s Cabin is a log house of the 1700s preserved in Schenley Park. There are not very many buildings of that era left within city limits: the Fort Pitt Blockhouse, the Neill Log House, this cabin, and possibly the Old Stone Tavern are the only ones Father Pitt knows of.  It is a curious fact that all the grand houses of stone and brick in old Pittsburgh have long since disappeared, but this humble poor man’s cabin remains.  (UPDATE: Note the kind comment below reminding us of the John Woods House in Hazelwood, which is in fact a stone house, though not one of the grandest of its time.)

Camera: Canon PowerShot S45.