We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Fort Pitt Block House

601 Commonwealth Pl, Building C, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
+1 412-471-1764
Save
Review Highlights
Informative

A small building with big history. The oldest building in Pittsburgh owned by the DAR who are... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Terry H
via mobile
Worth the stop

Free - except for parking- which you pay for everywhere in Pittsburgh. Interesting site. Oldest... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
dmc42467
,
New Jersey
Read all 89 reviews
Map
Satellite
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Overview
More
The Fort Pitt Block House was originally constructed in 1764 as a defensive redoubt for Fort Pitt, a key British fortification during the French and Indian War. As the Block House is the only surviving structure left of Fort Pitt, it holds much significance to Pittsburgh and the surrounding area. The oldest authenticated structure in Western Pennsylvania, it is part of the National Historic Landmark of the Forks of the Ohio.The building was first used to defend the fort from Native American Indian attacks during the mid-18th century. After the British abandoned Fort Pitt in 1772, the Block House was used as a trading post for a number of years. During the American Revolution Fort Pitt served as the western headquarters for the Continental Army. Following the Revolution the United States Army decided to slowly dismantle the fort and replace it with a smaller garrison called Fort Fayette.The Block House survived the demolition of Fort Pitt because it was converted into a single-family dwelling in 1785. Over the next one hundred years, different families of various sizes, classes and backgrounds lived in the Block House. In the 1840s it became a multi-family tenement with a family living in the upstairs room and another family living downstairs. During the 19th century the Point District, the former area of Fort Pitt and where the Block House is located, became one of the poorest and most densely populated neighborhoods of Pittsburgh. In 1894 the Block House was gifted to the Pittsburgh Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) by the structure’s owner, Mary Schenley. An extensive initial restoration was needed to convert the Block House back to its original form. In 1902, the structure faced possible demolition to make way for the construction of warehouses and railway terminals. The Fort Pitt Society, an all-female and all volunteer group, stood up to the Pennsylvania Railroad and powerful industrialists such as Henry Clay Frick to save the Block House – something unheard of at the time. The Block House has survived numerous floods throughout its history, most recently in 2004 during Hurricane Ivan when the water reached halfway up the building’s stone foundation.Under the guardianship of the Fort Pitt Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution of Allegheny County the Block House has remained free and open to the public as a historical site and museum for almost 120 years. Privately owned and operated the Block House receives no state or federal funding and each year welcomes more than 20,000 visitors from local school children to international tourists. It has been described by many as the “jewel of Point State Park.”
  • Excellent44%
  • Very good38%
  • Average15%
  • Poor2%
  • Terrible1%
Travelers talk about
LOCATION
601 Commonwealth Pl, Building C, Pittsburgh, PA 15222
CONTACT
+1 412-471-1764
Write a ReviewReviews (89)
Traveler rating
Traveler type
Time of year
Language
All reviews
"point state park"
in 17 reviews
"piece of history"
in 7 reviews
"american revolution"
in 5 reviews
"original structure"
in 3 reviews
"oldest building"
in 3 reviews
"worth a stop"
in 4 reviews
"free admission"
in 4 reviews
"room building"
in 2 reviews
"interesting history"
in 3 reviews
"quick visit"
in 2 reviews
"step back in time"
in 2 reviews
"small museum"
in 2 reviews
"for sale"
in 2 reviews
"blockhouse"
in 12 reviews
"surviving"
in 8 reviews
"artifacts"
in 8 reviews
"docent"
in 5 reviews
Filter

1 - 10 of 86 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

A small building with big history. The oldest building in Pittsburgh owned by the DAR who are credited with fighting the 1800s railroad monopoly to save the blockhouse. The attendant was friendly & loaded with facts & info about the original fort. Fun & informative...More

Thank Terry H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 1 week ago

Free - except for parking- which you pay for everywhere in Pittsburgh. Interesting site. Oldest structure in Pittsburgh.

Thank dmc42467
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 26, 2017 via mobile

Nice photo opportunity at oldest house in town. Admission is free. The whole park is nice to walk around. Make sure to go to Fort Pitt Museum if you have the time. Nice city views.

Thank Sheryl B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
See more reviews
Reviewed November 22, 2017

On a whim my travel companion and I decided to stick our heads in here to see what this was about. We were pleasantly surprised with the history, artifacts and their relation to the area. I could have spent another hour enjoying and reading if...More

Thank AJVaughnDOTcom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 6, 2017 via mobile

This small building is all that’s left of the 17th century fort. It’s free to visit and packed with interesting historical illustrations and facts inside; my favorite were the various high water marks for floods over the last two centuries. It’s amazing how use of...More

Thank Wanderlust777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 30, 2017

Tucked away in the modern city is this small piece of history from the days of the revolution. Cool to say you were in the oldest house in town. Take a look inside, takes about 10 minutes, small but interesting.

Thank Philosophyguru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 13, 2017 via mobile

The oldest building in Pittsburgh with amazing historical artifacts! Can see how important this was to surviving Indians Ned the British Durant both French and Indian and Revolutionary war! Worth the trip!

Thank fjmccarl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2017

Free! And if you're lucky Peg will be the docent in charge. She's a wealth of knowledge and dispenses it in an engaging way. There's a lot to learn in this little brick building in the middle of the park - next to the main...More

Thank MSH444
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 31, 2017

The Fort Pitt Block House is small and only takes a few minutes to visit the one room. It's the history that matters. It's the oldest structure in Pittsburgh and most of the building is original. There are some artifacts to see but this is...More

Thank Jackbear
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 29, 2017

i don't know how long this has been closed but i was very disappointed that it was. i can't say much more about something that i didn't get to see but they want 100 letters?

1  Thank maryellab1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nearby
Nearby HotelsSee all 75 hotels in Pittsburgh
Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown
4,639 reviews
.08 km away
Fairmont Pittsburgh
902 reviews
.43 km away
Hilton Garden Inn Pittsburgh Downtown
398 reviews
.48 km away
Renaissance Pittsburgh Hotel
1,650 reviews
.50 km away
Nearby Restaurants
Eddie Merlot's Pittsburgh
235 reviews
.22 km away
The Yard
123 reviews
.34 km away
City Works - Pittsburgh
94 reviews
.33 km away
Stone Neapolitan Pizzeria
56 reviews
.10 km away
Nearby Attractions
Heinz Hall
241 reviews
.49 km away
Point State Park
704 reviews
.22 km away
Roberto Clemente Bridge (Sixth Street Bridge)
313 reviews
.55 km away
PPG Place
200 reviews
.23 km away
Questions & Answers
Get quick answers from Fort Pitt Block House staff and past visitors.
Note: your question will be posted publicly on the Questions & Answers page.
Posting guidelines
Submit