Thursday Doors – Station Square

Doors to one of the restaurants

We all arrived in Pittsburgh on Friday night, for a Sunday church service and my mom’s funeral on Monday. That left us with some free time on Saturday. Faith and I drove to Station Square, the old Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad terminal and freight warehouse turned shopping/dining experience, while my brother’s family was on a driving tour to introduce his son-in-law to the city. Faith and I walked across the river and up to PPG Paints Arena, to buy some Pens gear in support of their playoff run. After that, we all met at the top of the Duquesne Incline for lunch atop Mt. Washington. Of course, I collected some doors.

If you want the full history on Station Square, click the link in the above paragraph. If you prefer the Dragnet version, I’m borrowing some of their text below:

In 1873, the Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad (P&LE) was first chartered and in 1877, construction began on a rail line connecting Pittsburgh to Youngstown. In 1879, the P&LE officially opened for commercial traffic and later became known as the Little Giant for the amount of tonnage that it moved.

After World War II, air and motor traffic in America began to make considerable inroads into the railroad passenger business. By 1970, railroad passenger traffic had all but disappeared. Even the company’s facilities for handling freight at the Pittsburgh station were no longer needed. The great railway complex, covering over forty acres and containing, besides the huge terminal, an extensive freight station, a seven story warehouse, an express house and several minor buildings was in danger of becoming a commercial cemetery.”

You still might want to click that link, as there are a few old photos on that page worth viewing.

I started writing this post on my iPad, while flying home from visiting my brother in Iowa. That means I didn’t have access to the photos, so I haven’t chosen the other doors. So, I’ll stop writing and I’ll add captions to the doors I select. You can click on any photo to start a slide show.

Thursday Doors is a weekly worldwide-door-sharing-phenomenon brought to you by Norm Frampton Railways, home of the Montreal Limited. If you want to participate, or if you want to see cool doors from all over, point your locomotive toward Norm’s roundhouse. Upon arrival, check out his doors, and then look for the blue frog. Click that tadpole and follow the signals to the rail yard full of doors.


  1. Of course there’s a rail yard….😉Love them all! The boat. I did a paddleboat tour in Mississippi in high school. Tried to imagine Mark Twain’s life. Pittsburg looks like a great place to explore. And those pups look might happy under the “umbrella” of good taste.


    1. Thanks Cheryl. If there’s an old rail yard, you know I’ll find it. I remember standing out on the deck of those boats, pretending to be in another time and place. The longest portion of the ride was down the Ohio River, and we got pretty far away from the lights of the city.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “Home of the Montreal Limited”? Your Thursday Doors intro of Norm always makes me laugh. It’s a great way to start my Thursday mornings :D

    You certainly took advantage of your free day! Lots of great photos … and I like the spiral fire escape too. Thanks for mentioning it. I probably wouldn’t have noticed it because I was busy looking at the building which looks like a layered cake. Or maybe I just have cake on my mind ;)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Mmmmmmm, caaaake… Thanks Joanne. I have a text file with the “standard” introduction of Norm/Thursday Doors, but I always feel like I could do better. I try not to go too far. worry that one day, I might get a “knock it off” note from Norm.

      The spiral fire escape caught my attention. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one before.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. The restroom doors – the saloon type – I wonder how that style originated? Was it out of a lack of materials? Or did those on the inside want to have an idea of who was entering based on the hats above and boots below? Or! Perhaps the style allows for quick exits!

    Maybe I watched to many dusters and cartoons in my youth.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Freight House Shops has a very attractive entrance. I also like the contrast of the gate with the subtle Bar title, too.
    When I looked at the historical page, initially, I thought, “Wow, is that the beginning of the interstate?” Kinda, Joey, Those were train tracks! :) It’s pretty, liquid fireworks and all. That bridge is also a winner. Great doors post, Dan!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Joey. When I worked on the river boats, we made our final U-turn just before that bridge. I would be outside on the back deck, with all my pots and pans and coffee urns ready to load in my van, so I could beat the crowd off the boat and out of the parking lot. I didn’t get paid extra if I was late getting back to the catering shop. That was when the freight terminal was just starting it’s final decline. It’s good to see it restored and looking pretty again.


  5. Great doors, Dan, and I noticed a beer sign crept in there somehow. :-) Tonight’s the big night for the Penguins and I’ll be watching. Can’t say which team I’m rooting for, but as the finals start Monday night, I won’t get to see any of them from France. :-( Enjoyed this gallery.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Janet. The beer sign was in hanging over the stairs at the entrance to the bar, so…kinda-door-ish.

      I’m hoping the Pens find their A-game and Ottawa leaves theirs in Canada tonight.


  6. What super, gorgeous doors! I can’t even pick a favorite this week. I’m partial to ironwork. Also arches, bright colors, round things …. So no favorite! Funny about the guy who built the Brooklyn Bridge: the last time I was in NYC, I bought that bridge. The deed is supposed to come in the mail, but it hasn’t come yet. How many years do you think I should wait before I contact the seller?

    Liked by 1 person

      1. That rich wood was gorgeous. You rarely see that kind of workmanship in stores today. I bet it smelled good too. I like the smell of some fresh tobacco, and some when it’s burning.

        My Dad didn’t smoke cigars too often. He was a cigarette, and pipe smoker. Some of his pipe blends smelled wonderful.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. After seeing your post last weekend I’ve been meaning to circle back and extend our condolences over the loss of your Mom. I’m so sorry about that Dan.
    I enjoy your Pittsburgh posts because having visited there twice for short trips some of it look familiar and at the same time I get to see a lot of the cool stuff that I missed.
    You’ve assembled quite a collection here but I have to say the Station Square Shops entrance certainly is the most eye catching of the bunch.
    And your Pens pulled it off in double OT, so good luck to them in the finals :-)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Norm. The past few weeks have been a blur. I appreciate your kind thoughts. We were in Pittsburgh for some sad duty, but it was nice to be together as a family and enjoy the city a little. My daughter and I listened to the Pen’s game on the drive back to CT. It was fun to hear them win. If the Pens aren’t in it, I usually root for a Canadian team, but not this year. Although, it took everything we had and a dose of luck to get past Ottawa.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, I’m glad you enjoyed them, Judy. There are more to come, but I’m trying to space them out. I think every city has lots (of doors) to offer, but these also have memories for me.

      Liked by 1 person

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