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The Little House That Did: Inspiring an Architectural Landscape Part 2

MONDAY, JANUARY 9, 2012

By Pamela Simmons


Conclusion of The Little House That Did: Sunnyledge, Inspiring an Architectural Landscape.

A story within a story…

In her book, Margaret Henderson Floyd explores deeply the projects of these influential architects. Initially, Henderson Floyd, (now deceased), an architectural history professor at Tuft’s and an expert on Boston architecture, suggested Longfellow as an article topic to student Laurie Crichton. In 1979, Crichton was killed in a car accident along a dangerous stretch of road between Boston and Williamston, Mass.

After further research by Floyd, another of her students, Sylvia Sanborn, chose to study the murals by John White Alexander in the Carnegie Institute of Pittsburgh, (a Longfellow, Alden, & Harlow design), rekindling Floyd’s interest in Longfellow. Oddly, like Crichton, Sanborn’s work was cut short in 1986 when she too became the victim of a fatal auto accident along the same stretch of highway between Boston and Williamstown.

Floyd acknowledging that this topic remained insufficiently explored, completed the research and wrote her book, dedicating it to both Crichton and Sanborn.

Today

Ironically, Sunnyledge is located almost directly across Fifth Avenue from the Willis McCook Mansion, the renovation of which was showcased in the Durability + Design story, Gilded-Age Treasure Glitters Anew on Steel City’s Onetime ‘Millionaires’ Row’.

 Sunnyledge Boutique Hotel & Tea Room today.

 www.sunnyledge.com

 Sunnyledge Boutique Hotel & Tea Room today.

Having passed through one brief ownership since Rob’s death, Sunnyledge lives life today as a boutique hotel and tea room. Though the house is renovated throughout, Rachel’s artwork still hangs there, as do the original architectural elevations by Orth and Longfellow, Alden and Harlow, which are framed in the library. Dr. McClelland’s office and waiting room serve as the hotel offices. The parlor is now the main dining room, and the McClellands’ original dining room is still hosting its share of engaging conversation as an intimate martini bar.

More information on Sunnyledge is available here.

ABOUT THE BLOGGER

Pamela Simmons

As Director of Marketing at Technology Publishing Company (publisher of Durability + Design, PaintSquare, and JPCL), I’m here to shed light on the human side of our collective endeavors in the industries and trades we find ourselves engaged in. We'll talk about the people behind the projects: creating the designs, using the technologies, industry interactivity, and achieving the synthesis that makes it all work.

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Tagged categories: Architects; Architectural history; Architecture; Building design; Color + Design; Design; Historic Preservation; Historic Structures; Hotels; Renovation; Restoration

Comment from T Chicka, (1/10/2012, 4:48 PM)

Cool story Pam! I enjoyed all of the pictures and Pittsburgh History.


Comment from Joseph Berchenko, (8/2/2012, 9:04 AM)

Great piece of architectural history. Thanks for sharing.


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