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St. Luke's Episcopal Church

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1880. Henry M. Congdon. S. 6th and Chestnut sts.
  • (© George E. Thomas)
  • (Photograph by William E. Fischer, Jr.)
  • (Photograph by William E. Fischer, Jr.)
  • (Photograph by William E. Fischer, Jr.)
  • (Photograph by William E. Fischer, Jr.)

The harsh contrast of the Richardsonian color scheme in red sandstone with white Ohio freestone sets off the Gothic detail of this remarkable church and its massive square tower. Congdon was the son of a founding member of New York's Ecclesiological Society (the American version of the English group that sought to restore the forms and rituals of medieval worship). The massing of the properly oriented west front recalls H. H. Richardson's proposed adaptation of Notre-Dame-de-la-Grande in Poitiers as the facade for Trinity Church in Boston. In good Ruskinian fashion, Congdon drew on regional botany as the source of the foliate capitals of the nave arcade. The Coleman family of nearby Cornwall paid for the church. Compare it with their workers’ Methodist church by John McArthur Jr. in Cornwall ( LE5). Chestnut Street to the east of St. Luke's widens into a handsome tree-lined parkway that contains Lebanon's mansion row.

Writing Credits

George E. Thomas


What's Nearby


George E. Thomas, "St. Luke's Episcopal Church", [Lebanon, Pennsylvania], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of PA vol 2

Buildings of Pennsylvania: Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania, George E. Thomas, with Patricia Likos Ricci, Richard J. Webster, Lawrence M. Newman, Robert Janosov, and Bruce Thomas. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2012, 337-337.

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