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Elmhurst—The House of Friendship (Samuel S. Bloch House)

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Samuel S. Bloch House
1891, attrib. Frederick J. Osterling. 1942. 1997, Peter Greer and James Kling (DRS Hundley Kling Gmitter). 1228 National Rd. (near Washington Ave.)
  • (West Virginia Collection within the Carol M. Highsmith Archive, Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division)

The founder and president of the Bloch Brothers Tobacco Company built this gargantuan Queen Anne house with his considerable profits. A sandstone first story provides support for an incredible array of projections, turrets, brackets, and balconies on the two and one-half stories above. In 1942 a second generation of Blochs established the House of Friendship, a home for aged women, in honor of their mother, and a large masonry addition was built to augment the facilities in the original house. In 1997 Pittsburgh architects designed sensitive additions that deinstitutionalized the 1942 annex and provided further amenities for residents, now including men and women. The attribution to Osterling, of Pittsburgh, is based on stylistic grounds. Impeccably maintained, the property symbolizes what a National Road address meant in the 1890s.

Writing Credits

S. Allen Chambers Jr.

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