You are here

Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Chapel

-A A +A
1906. Near Mission St.
  • Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Chapel (Alison K. Hoagland)
  • Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Chapel (HABS)
  • Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Chapel (HABS)

Never finished, the simple chapel to Saint Nicholas has a pure form that is charming. The chapel was constructed over the graves of Igumen (Abbot) Nicholas, the first Russian Orthodox missionary in Kenai, his assistant Makarii Ivanov, and an unidentified monk. It is thus near the site of the first church, as these clergy would have originally been buried in the churchyard. It is also near the site of Saint Nicholas Redoubt, the Russians' outpost at Kenai.

The 19 foot 10 inch square chapel is constructed of 5-inch-thick logs, hewn flat on two sides and grooved on the bottom to fit snugly over the one below. The logs were dovetailed at the corners and braced on the interior. The pyramidal roof has four cross gables and is topped by a cupola and onion dome. There is a low double door on the west side, and two windows on two sides.

In the late 1980s, the building was further braced; bolts were driven through the logs, marring the exterior appearance and damaging the historic fabric.

Writing Credits

Alison K. Hoagland


What's Nearby


Alison K. Hoagland, "Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Chapel", [Kenai, Alaska], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Alaska, Alison K. Hoagland. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 119-119.

If SAH Archipedia has been useful to you, please consider supporting it.

SAH Archipedia tells the story of the United States through its buildings, landscapes, and cities. This freely available resource empowers the public with authoritative knowledge that deepens their understanding and appreciation of the built environment. But the Society of Architectural Historians, which created SAH Archipedia with University of Virginia Press, needs your support to maintain the high-caliber research, writing, photography, cartography, editing, design, and programming that make SAH Archipedia a trusted online resource available to all who value the history of place, heritage tourism, and learning.

, ,