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Antique Mall/Ohio River


Features 23 dealers offering multi era items including furniture, glass, clothing, books, jewelry and much, much, more...


February 5, 2009


Bill and Leo made the decision to relocate from the Regent Square area of Pittsburgh and bought an historic home in Bellevue.  A significant amount of sweat equity was poured in the house to create a cozy and comfortable environment.  In 2008, they purchased the building located at 4331 Ohio River Boulevard.  The building had suffered from years of neglect, but the structure was sound and it reeked of "potential."  "As a resident of Bellevue and a business owner in Bellevue I am committed both to my dealers and my community.  I really love Bellevue," Bill exclaimed. Antique Mall Ohio River (click for more photos)


Shopping for antiques and collectibles in an historic Bellevue mansion, the Antique Mall/Ohio River, located at 4331 Ohio River Boulevard, the building recently painted purple, is the new home of 23 antique dealers. The Pittsburgh area metropolitan suburb of Bellevue is just six miles northwest of the city by way of SR65.


The house was the original family home of Alexander Gilliland, who was born in 1847 in Glasgow, Scotland, and later  married “ Betty Elizabeth Lizzie ” Bald of Dunfermline, Scotland.  In 1866, Alexander immigrated to the United States, settling in the city of Allegheny, PA, the north shore area separated by the Allegheny River from the city of Pittsburgh, PA.  There, he connected with a  beloved family friend, steel magnate and philanthropist, Andrew Carnegie.  Eighteen years later, in 1884, Alexander would apply for Naturalization Papers in the District Courts of Allegheny County PA.


Gilliland built the family manor which now serves as the home of the Antique Mall/Ohio River.  A master builder, he outfitted this, then rural homestead, with red oak paneling, pocket doors, elegant stained glass windows and marble fireplaces.


Alex and Elizabeth Gilliland - Seasons' GreetingsBuilt in 1892 on land purchased from the local Jacques family, the original estate consisted of the main house, a carriage house with quarters, a fruit orchard and a house for the servants.  The Gilliland family moved to their new residence in 1893, and while today, the principal home and carriage house remain intact, construction of Ohio River Boulevard carved out a portion of the original fruit orchard.  Located on the adjacent property is the house he later built for some of his offspring.  The residence initially occupied by the adult children’s families remains, albeit it is in poor condition.  Directly across the boulevard from the homestead are a few of the remnants of the foundation of the servants’ quarters.


Enjoying the fruits of his labor, often times, Alexander could be found relaxing on the large river rock porch that overlooked the Ohio River.  Legend has it that he wore his Scottish tartan at least 365 days a year and played a gramophone so loud it could be heard across the river in nearby McKees Rocks.  He spent a portion of his earliest "retirement" overseeing the building of small, well built row houses on the hill above his estate.  The street there still bears his name.  The homes lining the cul-de-sac are examples of the homes he built for "starter" families.


Alexander ’s wife, Lizzie , died in 1923 at the age of 76.  Alexander remained in the residence at 331 Ohio River Boulevard until his death on May 3, 1931, at the age of 85.  Notably, the newspaper article published at the time of his death identified a number of his lifetime achievements to include “retired contractor, president of Duff Patents Company, Inc. of Pittsburgh, and treasurer of the National Mortar and Supply Company of Pittsburgh.  He was a member of Allegheny Lodge 223, F. & A. M., Bellevue Chapter 286, Royal Arch Masons; thirty third degree Mason, Allegheny Council 38, Royal and Select Masons; Allegheny Commandary 35, Knights Templar; Pennsylvania Consistory, Syria Temple, Masonic Veterans Association, Lambskin Club, Jesters, and a member of the Imperial Council, A.A.O.N.M.S.  Mr. Gilliland leaves three sons, William Bald Gilliland, Walter A. Gilliland, and Robert M. Gilliland; seven grandchildren, and one great grandson.  Funeral services were held at his late residence last Tuesday evening at 8 o'clock. Interment took place Wednesday morning in Uniondale Cemetery.”

1931 was also the year Allegheny County began surveying and taking the land to construct Ohio River Boulevard. 


The next tenants of the house were a family that constructed the cinder block garage that abuts the house.  They lived in the house and worked there running a machine shop in the garage.  Later, the property owners utilized the house as a boarding house.  More recently, it was used as storage for auto parts. 


In early 2008, a restoration of the main house was undertaken.  Woodwork was refinished, stairs were built, and trash was discarded.  False ceilings were demolished to restore the house to its original condition.  Aluminum siding applied to sections of the exterior was removed.


In June 2008, with little fanfare, 7 antique dealers opened their shop doors to begin selling their wares.  By the end of 2008 the Antique Mall/Ohio River was at maximum tenant capacity.  Loaded to the rafters with antique furniture representing all eras, jewelry, pottery, silver and clothing, glass, furniture and endless memorabilia all share the space where once the Scottish land baron and his family lived.


For the duration of the 2008-2009 winter season, the Antique Mall/Ohio River is open 10am-6pm  on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.  Sunday hours are noon to 5pm.  The Mall is closed on Wednesday.  Expanded hours are expected to resume in the Spring.  Bill is also available to conduct estate sales, provide for consultations, purchase estates and facilitate appraisals of your treasured antiques.


For more information or to schedule an appointment, stop by the Mall during regular business hours, contact Bill Cox by telephone at 412-561-6331, or send an inquiry to amor@antiquesohioriver.com.  Visit the ever-changing website at www.antiquesohioriver.com.


Funk Times 2: In a pair of old homes, antique shop owners' quirky dreams come true -"Pittsburgh Post Gazette"


Vintage Shopping in Pittsburgh -Posted by Liz on "Mod Life"


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