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Mount St. Peter Roman Catholic Church

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1942, Enos Cooke. 100 Freeport Rd.

Sheathed in red Michigan sandstone from the demolished mansion of Richard King Mellon on 5th Avenue in Pittsburgh, this church sits on a hillside above New Kensington. Architect Enos Cooke was a pupil of noted church architect John T. Comes. St. Peter's congregation, organized in 1902, outgrew its small frame building during New Kensington's industrial boom. World War II caused a shortage of materials that mandated an imaginative reuse of scrap items. And since the Mellon family no longer needed a grand mansion in Pittsburgh and no one was found to purchase or accept the house as a donation, they reluctantly contracted to demolish it. Seventy-five percent of the exterior material and interior fittings of the mansion, including steel beams, oak and bronze doors, marble, bronze stair railings, carved wood, and a granite porch balustrade, were moved from Pittsburgh to New Kensington and reused in this tall, severe basilica plan church with tall narrow nave windows. Setbacks at the entrance suggest the Art Deco style. A convent, parish house, and school that complement the style of the original building were added to the complex in 1946.

Writing Credits

Lu Donnelly et al.


What's Nearby


Lu Donnelly et al., "Mount St. Peter Roman Catholic Church", [New Kensington, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 1

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania, Lu Donnelly, H. David Brumble IV, and Franklin Toker. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2010, 221-221.

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