Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mary Flinn Lawrence jumping sidesaddle!

Just wanted to add this photo in as well. This undated photo shows Mary Flinn Lawrence jumping sidesaddle over a split rail fence. The photo measures app. 8x10. See my prior post tonight about other photos that were recently found.

Have fun!
Jeff L.

Hartwood Pictures Found!

Hello everyone,

I visited with Dad this weekend and we went through some old photos that he had and I thought that I would post them due to their interesting content. The first photo below - and we are unsure of who took them - shows the stables probably sometime in the 1950's. They look pretty much back then as they look today.

The photo shown below is of the Hartwood stable master and master of the hunt. His name was Merle Brown - to us he was known as Brownie and he took care of the stables, the horses and all of the riding equipment concerning the foxhunt. Brownie and his wife Alice Brown lived in the house adjacent to the stables. When Mary Lawrence sold Hartwood to Allegheny County in 1974 it was stipulated in the sales contract that the Browns would live rent free in their house until their passing which is what happened.
This photo below is of John Lawrence and Mary Flinn Lawrence posing at what is though to be believed at the site where Hartwood was being built. The photo # on the back is #B29, and when compared to the 2 photos below - which will knock your socks off! - the other 2 photos are dated in the same sequence, which leads us to believe that they were all taken from 1925-1927 when Hartwood was built.

This photo below my friends is one of only 2 photos taken of the Hartwood mansion under construction! It shows the front (actually rear) carriage entrance with scaffolding on the roof and debris piles in the front. This photo # is #B05

This photo below shows the rear patio area (outside of the great room) under construction as well! There are debris piles and scaffolding in this photo as well. Most likely the roof was just being installed. This photo # is B29 as well. If you look closely you can see a worker right behind the debris pile.

This leads me to believe that there are many more pictures from this photo lot to be found! Each of the above 3 pictures measures app. 2.5" x 3.5" and are black and white. I am going to dig into our family archive to find as many of these little pictures as I can. This is a real find because no one had found pictures of the Hartwood mansion under construction until now!
Stay tuned as I will post more pictures as they become available!
Jeff L.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Orienteering at Hartwood 4.18.09

by the Western Pennsylvania Orienteering Club

Where: Hartwood Acres, Allison Park, PA
When: Saturday, April 18, 2009; sign-in 11 AM – 2 PM

What is Orienteering? Orienteering is a competitive form of land navigation. It is for all ages and degrees of fitness and skill, and all-weather. It provides the suspense and excitement of a treasure hunt. The object of orienteering is to locate control points by using a map and compass to navigate through the woods.

What to bring? All you will need to bring is a compass (if you do not have one, we can loan you one), and appropriate footwear to walk in the woods.

Event Details: The courses offered at Hartwood Acres will include Cross Country courses for beginner and advanced beginner, intermediate and experienced orienteers. Cross country courses involve finding a series of control flags in a pre-specified sequence. Come early if you plan to do more than one course.

Sign In 11:00 am to 2:00 pm
· Must Finish the course by 3:30 pm

Instruction for novices: Available on site

Cost: $4.00 per map (family or group can share one map if they wish)

Event Location: Hartwood Acres, Allison Park. On Middle Road, near Central Elementary School. Look for red-and-white arrow signs.

Questions: Contact Jim Wolfe at

Check our website, for complete details and driving directions for this event and the entire WPOC schedule of events.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Family movies update!

Hello friends of Hartwood!

I have exciting news about the reels of family film shot in and around Hartwood from the 1920's-1930's. I have an appointment with a film company in Coreopolis, Pa. next month so that they can review the 16mm black and white films to examine the the condition of the film so that it can be determined whether they are usable at all.

I will update this site once I have further info. I have also been in touch with a video production company to explore the feasibility of producing a video of Hartwood.

Till next time..........

Jeff L.