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Hartwood Mansion

Hartwood Mansion is one of the most visited tourist attractions in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The 31-room mansion was built in 1929, in the classic Tudor style of the Elizabethan era. The mansion is situated in the midst of a 629-acre park. It is a popular venue for concerts, theater, and weddings. Hartwood Mansion was originally the home of John and Mary Lawrence. Mary was the daughter of Senator William Flinn, owner of the city's largest construction firm. Mary Lawrence sold the mansion and an adjacent 400 acres of property to the Allegheny County Parks Department in 1969. The property was expanded to the present size of 629 acres. The mansion was opened to the public in 1976. The mansion was designed by the well-reputed architect, Alfred Hopkins. The design conforms to the exquisite architectural style of the 19th century. A fine collection of original English and American antiques is housed in the house. The artifacts and antiques include 19th-century English chairs, a 17th-century Flemish tapestry, 1901 Steinway grand piano, Aeolian pipe organ, 19th century damask ball-and-claw-foot couch, and two rare Georgian folding walnut game tables. Other interesting embellishments include a hand-carved oak mantel made in 1601 that was removed from an English castle, and an 1870 Bijar Persian carpet in the Great Hall. The carpet consists of 1,000 knots per square inch and is worth $75,000. The Great Hall, measuring about half the size of a football field, contains most of the objects. On the grounds adjoining the mansion is an outdoor amphitheater. Such cultural events as theater, symphony music and summer concert series are held there. One of the major events is the annual Eckerd Celebration of Lights. The celebration begins in mid-November and lasts through mid-January. The cultural events are organized to complement guided tours of the mansion.