The oldest Albanian Orthodox congregation in the country owns the Cathedral of St. George. Built in 1872 as a Unitarian church, it occupies a narrow rectangular site with houses on three sides, its highly picturesque facade facing E. Broadway. With adjacent two- or three-story houses already built by members of the congregation, Thayer designed a church without fear that new development would negate his efforts to maximize the natural lighting for this constricted site. The interior has been little altered except for distinctive embellishments of religious folk art added by the Albanian American congregation that acquired the building in 1908. The Byzantine style of these decorations is compatible with the original Venetian Gothic–inspired ornamentation. The only major alteration is the loss of the spire on the bell tower. In recent years the Albanian congregation has acquired the adjoining houses, which will reestablish the original ensemble.
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Cathedral of St. George
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