Father Pitt

St. Michael the Archangel Church, Munhall

Posted in Architecture, Sculpture, Churches, Munhall by Dr. Boli on October 30, 2014

This Slovak church is no longer used, but the building is still kept in good condition.

The Romanesque façade, with its colorful inlays, is something extraordinary even in a region of extraordinary churches.

The relief of Ss. Cyril and Methodius, apostles to the Slavs, shows more than a little Art Deco influence.

Until a few years ago, the tower held up a fine statue of St. Joseph the Worker, one of the last major works of the great Frank Vittor. It has been moved to St. Maximilian Kolbe parish, where you can see it at eye level.

George Washington Memorial, Allegheny Commons

Posted in North Side, Sculpture by Dr. Boli on October 25, 2014

Sculptor Edward Ludwig Albert Pausch designed this equestrian statue, which was unveiled to great fanfare in 1891. It depicts young Colonel Washington, aged 23, as he appeared when he visited the future site of Pittsburgh and nearly drowned himself in the Allegheny. This is apparently known as Pausch’s masterpiece.

If you enlarge the photo above, you will notice that, at the upper right, the name of the Smith Granite Company comes before the sculptor’s name in the signature.

The monument was commissioned by the Junior Order of the United American Mechanics.

“Sacrifice,” by Allen George Newman, in Brighton Heights

Posted in Brighton Heights, Sculpture by Dr. Boli on July 27, 2014

A splendid allegorical World War I memorial. Our all-American hero casts off the robes of comfort and offers his sword to whoever needs defending (in Pittsburgh, old Pa Pitt supposes, it is more proper to say “whoever needs defended”). Allen George Newman had a considerable reputation in his day, and this memorial must have cost the neighborhood a good bit of money. Note that the dates of the war are given as 1917-1919; although we commonly take the Armistice in 1918 as the end of the war, it was not technically over until the Treaty of Versailles was signed in 1919.

The pictures in this article have been donated to Wikimedia Commons under the Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication, so no permission is needed to use them for any purpose whatsoever.

 

James Scott Negley Monument in Allegheny Cemetery—with an Announcement

Posted in Cemeteries, Sculpture by Dr. Boli on July 4, 2014

 

General James Scott Negley was an important figure in the Union Army, but perhaps his greatest claim to undying memory is that his sister married Thomas Mellon, guaranteeing that the Negleys would be intertwined with the richest family on earth. This picture has been donated to Wikimedia Commons under a Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication, so no permission is needed to use it for any purpose whatsoever.

And now, an announcement. It cannot have escaped regular readers that old Pa Pitt loves to wander through cemeteries with a camera. The reason is simple: our best cemeteries are great outdoor art museums filled with imperishable masterpieces of architecture and sculpture, and great thought was put into laying them out in a picturesque manner.

Lest his readers begin to suspect, however, that he has a morbid obsession with death, Father Pitt has decided to create a separate site devoted to nothing but Pittsburgh cemeteries. There you will find many of the cemetery pictures that have been published here, and new pictures as well that have never been seen anywhere else. Occasional cemetery pictures will still appear here, but Father Pitt’s main site will perhaps maintain a healthier balance between life and death now that he is free to take as many cemetery pictures as he wants without worrying that he seems too morose.

(If you should visit the site and see a notice that it is “under review,” come back in a day or so; the review seldom takes longer than that.)

Graver Monument in Allegheny Cemetery

Posted in Cemeteries, Sculpture by Dr. Boli on July 1, 2014

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A fine sculpture from 1887 that looks as fresh now as it did when it was put up.

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