Doug and Marika moved here from New York City in order to restore this property, built at the turn of the 20th century when oil was first discovered at Drake's Well in Western Pennsylvania. Once housing coal and oil-smeared workers, this former Tidewater Oil Company pumping station now hosts brides in spotless wedding gowns, enjoying both the beauty of the Pump House and the richness of its history.
The history of the Pump House began in 1878, when three ambitious men hatched a plan for the world's first long-distance underground oil pipeline which would transport oil from well to refinery more quickly and efficiently than the horse-drawn wagons of the time. Pumping stations were needed every fifty miles along this long route to keep pressure on the pipeline so that the oil could reach its destination. Pump House Bed and Breakfast is one of the only properties in the country in which the both the original homes of the foremen and the large brick buildings remain. Doug has spent more than 20 years lovingly and painstakingly restoring these foreman houses as well as the large industrial brick buildings. The Brick Barn Hall once housed steam pumps to pressurize the pipe and keep the oil moving, and the Catawissa Cabin behind it served as the telegraph office. The Celebration Space contained boilers that produced the steam to power the pumps, while the adjoining Studio Cabin functioned as a blacksmith's workspace. Today, the buildings function as reception spaces for weddings and other special events, and house private suites as well as an art studio where Doug pursues his work and teaches drawing, ceramics, and stained glass classes. The Season House, one of the two foreman homes, features additional guest accommodations while Doug and Marika reside in the other foreman house. Visit and experience a piece of PA history! The 2004 This Old House feature on Doug's renovations to the main house can be viewed below.