The major renewal of the Westinghouse Memorial in Schenley Park is now complete!
The Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy has partnered with the City of Pittsburgh to renew this remarkable space. The fully restored Westinghouse Memorial includes a reestablished lily pond; renewed memorial sculpture; native plant landscape; new nighttime lighting; and stormwater management.
About the Memorial
Located near the entrance to the Steve Faloon Trail, this memorial to George Westinghouse has been a distinctive feature of Schenley Park since its dedication in 1930. Originally financed by small donations from over 55,000 Westinghouse employees, it encompasses history, art, and natural beauty.
Architects Henry Hornbostel and Eric Fisher Wood designed the monument and the surrounding landscape, including the pond, trees, and location of black granite benches. They chose sculptor Daniel Chester French to design the sculptures, including the bronze “The Spirit of American Youth,” the figure of a young man taking inspiration from the life of Westinghouse, which was described by art critics as “the finest portrayal of American boyhood.” The center portion of the monument depicts Westinghouse between a mechanic and an engineer. The surrounding panels were created by French’s collaborator, sculptor Paul Fjelde, to illustrate Westinghouse’s achievements.
About the Landscaping
Before there was a Westinghouse Memorial, there was a Lily Pond fed by the Phipps Run stream on its way to Panther Hollow Lake. After the memorial was built, the pond continued to receive its water entirely from this natural source before frequent storms proved too damaging to the pond. The stream was eventually placed in a pipe running beneath the pond and drinking water was used to fill the basin.
A fountain was installed to aerate the pond, completing its transformation to an artificial water feature. Eventually, multiple infrastructure failures led to the pond being drained in 2009 and the monument and surrounding landscape falling into a state of disrepair.