A Romanesque cube with an unusual apse in the back. The decorations in relief are particularly fine. The effect would have been better with bronze doors, but bronze doors tend to go missing, and their place has been taken by concrete.
McKeown Mausoleum, Calvary Cemetery
Shaw Mausoleum, McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery
Yet another mausoleum in this cemetery whose style is hard to define; we shall call it Romanesque, because of the rusticated stone, the medieval columns, and the divided arch in the bronze doors. The huge urn on top is almost cartoonish. Two bronze ornaments flanking the inscription have been stolen, probably to be melted down for their trivial worth in metal.
The earliest interment listed here was in 1896, and the most recent in 2001.
Hartman Mausoleum, McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery
Another unusual design from this cemetery. We shall call the style Romanesque because of the prominent round arch and the rusticated stone, but once again the architect has refused to meet our expectations of the Romanesque in the details. You will find nothing quite like it in the Pittsburgh city cemeteries. According to cemetery records, this mausoleum received its first burial in 1883—a few years before the Allegheny County Courthouse opened the floodgates of the Romanesque revival in the Pittsburgh area.
Guthrie Mausoleum, McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery
Here is a mausoleum not quite like anything else Father Pitt has seen in this area. For lack of a better term, he will call the style Romanesque, but there are odd bits of whimsy that suggest a local architect who cared little for any main stream of architectural thought.
Many of the mausoleums in the McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery are half-sunk into the hillside—a style that had gone out of favor in most Pittsburgh cemeteries, but remained popular here well into the twentieth century, probably because the vertical landscape nearly demands it.
Redfern Mausoleum, McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery
Old Pa Pitt loves McKeesport with an unreasoning love. It was once the second city of Allegheny County, and it was the center of its own distinct Mon Valley metropolitan area that was quite different from Pittsburgh culturally, The city had its own traditions, and—what is relevant here—its own architects and artisans. The mausoleums in the McKeesport and Versailles Cemetery, a small but splendid rural cemetery just outside downtown McKeesport, are quite different in style from the ones in Pittsburgh cemeteries.
Here, for example we have a mausoleum that Father Pitt must confess he cannot really classify. It has the sloping sides and general shape of an Egyptian mausoleum; it has rusticated stone that suggests Romanesque architecture, and columns with medieval capitals; and it has a Chippendale open pediment that suggests the baroque. Yet in this curious mishmash there is no disharmony. It looks the way it ought to look. Father Pitt does not know whether this was the design of a local architect or a mausoleum from a dealer’s stock catalogue, but he does know that he has never seen anything like it in Pittsburgh.