Tag: Renaissance Architecture

  • 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
  • Another Renaissance Palace in Squirrel Hill

    Gilding the capitals of your Ionic porch columns is a subtle way to tell the world, “I have more money than I know what to do with.” Note the half-round extrusion in the shadows on the right-hand side.

  • Pittsburgh Athletic Association, Oakland

    Fifth Avenue façade

    This grand Renaissance palace by Benno Janssen has a lighting scheme that emphasizes its architectural details.

    South corner
    With cannon silhouette

    In the foreground, the silhouette of one of the cannons on the grounds of Soldiers and Sailors Hall.

    East corner
  • Johnston House, Squirrel Hill

    Johnston house

    Probably built in the 1890s, this grand house on Wightman Street has its very Victorian trim picked out in cheerful colors. Note the thoroughness of the decoration: even the dormers are given little pilasters with Ionic capitals.

    Dormer
    Left dormer
    Oblique view
  • Top of the Keystone Bank Building

    Keystone Bank Building

    The lower floors of this remarkable 1903 bank tower by MacClure and Spahr have been mutilated by modern additions, but from a block away on Forbes Avenue all we can see is the unmutilated top of the building, with its distinctive arched light well.

  • Renaissance Palace in Squirrel Hill

    House on Aylesboro Avenue

    Pittsburgh has many Millionaires’ Rows, and one of them is along Aylesboro Avenue in Squirrel Hill. This house is typical of the rectangular Renaissance-palace style that was popular for large houses in the early 1900s.

    Renaissance palace
  • Some Details from Webster Hall

    Webster Hall sign
    Webster Hall

    Father Pitt picked up a Fujifilm HS10 camera very cheaply, and here is a demonstration of its long range. The picture above and the picture below were taken standing in the same spot: the steps of the Mellon Institute across Fifth Avenue. The picture above is not a composite: the lens is wide enough for the whole building. (Of course the perspective has been adjusted, because old Pa Pitt wouldn’t let a picture go without doing that.)

    Scallop-shell ornament

    A scallop-shell ornament over one of the windows in the upper floors. The long lens makes it easy to pick out interesting details, and the details on Webster Hall, designed by Henry Hornbostel, are worth picking out. It’s a kind of Art Deco Renaissance palace, built as luxury apartments, but soon changed into a hotel, and then back to luxury apartments again.

    Window
    Arches
    Brackets
    Lintel
  • The Roosevelt Hotel

    Built in 1927, the Roosevelt was Renaissance classical on the outside and Tudor on the inside. On Emporis.com, the design is credited to Webber & Wurster, a Philadelphia firm whose only work listed on Emporis.com is this building, although some Philadelphia buildings come up in wider Internet searches. The Roosevelt went out of business as a hotel more than once, for the last time half a century ago in 1972. Since then it has been apartments of one sort or another.

  • Row of Renaissance Apartment Buildings, Shadyside

    Berwyn, Delwood, Elmont

    At the west end of Holden Street we find this row of Renaissance apartment buildings with corner balconies; their exteriors have not been modified much since they were built, although the railings have been replaced in the first-floor balconies, and the last of those balconies has been filled in. The front doors are accented by segmental pediments (pediments with rounded rather than triangular tops) and columns with “modern Ionic” capitals (Ionic capitals where the curly volutes project from the four corners).

    Berwyn
    Delwood
    Elmont

    We presume that the Elmont has its name inscribed below the pediment like the others, but a fabric awning obscures it.

    From the other end
  • Eye and Ear Hospital, Uptown

    Eye and Ear Hospital

    This building was our first specialty eye and ear hospital, and a brief description from a history published in 1922 will show us how the idea of a hospital has changed in a century.

    Located on Fifth avenue, corner of Jumonville street, is the Eye and Ear Hospital, under the auspices of a board of women managers. It had its inception at a meeting held May 20, 1895, at the home of Miss Sarah H. Killikelly, who during her lifetime was well known in the literary and historical circles of the city. A charter was secured June 22, 1895, and a location was secured on Penn avenue, but a removal was made to the present building in 1905. The first board of managers consisted of thirteen women and two physicians, eye specialists, for the medical and surgical treatment of all diseases of the eye, ear, nose and throat. The patients are divided into three classes—first, for the poor who require treatment of a character that is not necessary to detain them at the hospital; second, for the poor who require detention in the hospital, to whom free beds are allotted in the wards and a nominal charge made if they are able to pay; third, for those able to pay, private rooms are furnished, therefore the hospital is in no sense a charity; it must under its charter minister without charge to all those who suffer from any disease of the eye and ear, who are unable to pay for treatment.

    No further remark is needed.