Style is Forever, Trends in Pittsburgh Architecture and Decoration

Chicago Hotelier Bertha Palmer is said to have coined the phrase "fashion is fleeting, but style is eternal." In Pittsburgh the definition of fleeting may be a little longer than in Palmer's Chicago and to a New York observer, styles in Pittsburgh may certainly have seemed at times to verge on the eternal. If there's one truism that runs through art, architecture and the decorative arts in Pittsburgh it's that new styles were adopted later than in other cities.

Furnishing the Frontier

For residents of Philadelphia, New York, Baltimore and Boston wanting fine home furnishings there were enough residents to support a cabinetmaking industry before 1800. In Charleston and elsewhere, the furnishing were more likely to come from England. In frontier cities like Pittsburgh, however, the economics of transportation and the landscape made it necessary to import a cabinetmaker.[...]

The Painted Furniture of Picnic House

The earliest homes in Pittsburgh that still stand date to around 1830. Since demolished from this period was “Picnic House” built around 1835 by William Croghan and Mary Croghan Schenley, the granddaughter of James O’Hara. The ballroom from Picnic House is now in the Cathederal of Learning. Several pieces of furniture exist from the house … Continue reading The Painted Furniture of Picnic House