Bismarck’s Cathedral of the Holy Spirit, which anchors the western edge of the Hill District, is a streamlined Art Moderne design with much grandeur, drama, and verticality in its expression. Construction began in 1941, and despite the stringencies imposed by World War II, the cathedral was dedicated by Bishop Vincent Ryan in 1945. Known as the “Building Bishop” during the eleven years of his episcopacy, Ryan supervised more than ten million dollars in the construction of church buildings, including rectories, schools, institutions for the elderly, hospitals, convents, a motherhouse, and parish halls. The cathedral is certainly Kurke’s purest and most expressive Art Moderne design. The tall nave with a narrow vertical window in the gabled front, the dominating square tower with slight setbacks near the top and a shallow dome, and the white-painted exterior make the building particularly imposing.
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Cathedral of the Holy Spirit
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