Kranich, Joel
Interview Date
Respondent Architect, born 5/12/29.
[T1S1] Respondent gives description of maternal grandparents: settled in Altoona, PA, 1895; owned department store, relates experiences about their arrival, their prosperity and their losses in the 1920s during depression. Respondent mentions grandfather's name: Jacob Brett; comments on cousins still living in Altoona. Respondent discusses move to Johnstown, PA: 1939; gives reasons for move; joined Reform Synagogue, comments on close relationship with grandfather and grandfather's love for real estate; created Respondent's interest in architecture and real estate. Respondent's parents: Samuel and Miriam Kranich: comments on how they met, father deceased, mother living; depicts happy childhood in Johnstown, reminisces on holiday celebrations. Respondent mentions wife, Annette Roscow; gives names of 2 children, 1 grandchild, notes role at Rodef Shalom Temple and involvement in other organizations. Attended Penn State U. and transferred to U. of PA to study architecture.
[T1S2] Respondent depicts architectural school: difficult; after graduation, took position in Los Angeles, notes employment in large firm and prominent buildings built by them. Respondent explains move back east and work for CBS in Philadelphia, PA, as director and producer, mentions influence of Tasso Katselas. Respondent comments on his work and his buildings; worked independently. Respondent reflects on restoring Rodef Shalom Temple and comments on magnificent dome and Materials used; discusses building biblical garden with Walter and Irene Jacob. Respondent notes hobbies: photography and growing orchids; repeats wife's name, married 1959, notes her career; comments on politics in Pittsburgh: not doing enough for development. Respondent comments on software industry in Pittsburgh.: credits CMU (Carnegie Mellon University), notes Craig St. referred to as Silicone Alley, comments on Park Place School conversion; involvement in addition to JCC (Jewish Community Center); feels city concerned with money for major projects, should be spread around.
[T2S3] Respondent discusses political involvement in city; offers several suggestions; notes frustrations with Strip District project and difficulties for developers and planners. Respondent attended Westmont High School, Johnstown, PA,; no military service. Respondent reflects on architecture: school does not teach business end, only creativity; residential architecture not lucrative now.
[T2S4] Respondent notes architecture consists of building and experiencing, work for solo practitioner now closing, better to work with large firm; continues discussion on relationship with architect and contractor, prefers simplicity of design. Respondent notes children are adopted, well adjusted; feels Jewish life is strong and vital, important for younger generation to be involved in Jewish life. Respondent still active in architecture, but semi-retired; photography important activity.
Altoona (Pa.); Architects; Architecture; Johnstown (Pa.); City and town life; Jews--Social life and customs; Computer software industry; Synagogues; Rodef Shalom Congregation (Pittsburgh, Pa.)
Length (hours)
Saul, Ruth
Berger, Betty
Collateral Materials
Box 103 FF 10
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