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St. Alfonso's Catholic Church

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1906, Augusto Ramasco. Southeast corner of S. Main and 4th South sts.
  • St. Alfonso's Catholic Church (Bret Morgan)

The only building in Paradise Valley constructed entirely of granite, the Catholic church combines excellent craftsmanship with a simple design in keeping with that of other buildings in town. The treatment of the granite defines the three sections of the building's walls. The surfaces of the foundation stones are left roughhewn, but the three courses above, rising to the windowsills, are smoother, creating a break between the foundation and the smooth stone blocks that make up the rest of the walls. The church itself is a narrow rectangle with an open interior plan and a tower at a rear (northeast) corner. According to Howard Wight Marshall's Paradise Valley, Nevada: The People and Buildings of an American Place (1995), the location of the tower is similar to that of the church in Sagliano Micca, Italy, the native village of many of Paradise Valley's Italian stonemasons. The belfry of the tower, however, is similar to that of the Protestant church ( NO33) in the treatment of the posts and brackets supporting the hipped roof above and may indicate other influences as well. Round-arched openings for the doors and windows are finished with tightly fitted voussoirs. A cropped biforated window pierces the front gable end, endowing the church with a restrained Romanesque appearance.

Writing Credits

Julie Nicoletta


What's Nearby


Julie Nicoletta, "St. Alfonso's Catholic Church", [Winnemucca, Nevada], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Nevada, Julie Nicoletta. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000, 146-147.

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