Although Harrisburg was designated State Capital in 1810 and has had a State Capitol Building since 1822, it was not until just prior to the Civil War in 1858 that an official Governor's residence was procured. prior to that time, Pennsylvania Governors obtained their own residences, mostly on Front Street from which the affairs of the Office were conducted. The first Executive Mansion stood at 111 S. Second Street, just south of Chestnut Street, and was occupied by only two Governors: William Fisher Packer and Andrew Gregg Curtin. In 1864, the Commonwealth purchased a three-story brick townhouse at Front and Barbara Streets for use as a new Executive Residence. Andrew Curtin was its first occupant. Realizing that the house was too small for State receptions, Curtin's successor, John White Geary, added in 1867 a three-story brick twin to the original house next door. in the late 1880's Governor James A. Beaver declaring that the two brick townhouses were too old fashioned architecturally unified the two facades through the application of an ornate Queen Anne-styled brownstone facade and named the building "Keystone Hall." The mansion continued as the home of Pennsylvania's Chief Executives until it was demolished in 1960 when plans were afoot to build a new Governor's Mansion, now located at Front and Maclay Streets.
1905 Postcard view of Keystone Hall from Riverfront Park with Barbara Street at left.
1960 view of Keystone Hall just prior to demolition.