About the Museum
The Stephen Foster museum is housed in a 12-sided gothic chamber with stained glass windows designed by Charles Connick that illustrate various Foster songs. On display in the shrine in and around gothic-arched alcoves are exhibits about Foster's life and each of the types of music he composed over the course of his career, including his minstrel songs, civil war music, parlor songs, hymns, and instrumental pieces. In the Center of the room is an exhibit of Pittsburgh during Foster's lifetime. The museum's sound system plays several recordings of Foster's songs, in a variety of styles.
Originally conceived as a shrine, the museum is quite small and only takes 30 to 45 minutes to tour. Private tours are available and must be arranged two weeks in advance of your visit. The museum, however, includes a detailed narrative that makes it very easy to tour on your own.