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St. Peter's by the Sea

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1870, Edwin L. Howland. 1879, porch. 1889, tower. 72 Central Ave.

The first St. Peter's Episcopal Church, a woodframe structure (1869), was almost immediately lost to a gale. Its more substantial replacement on the same site suggests a plain English country church in random masonry, an L-shaped mass with high gabled nave butted by low roofs over the aisles. The rugged, vernacular plainness and expressive roof silhouette, complemented by the somewhat later simple wooden porch with a massive and stubby tower set into the L, are appropriate for a summer church. Legend has it that Stanford White designed the tower, but this is probably not the case. On the interior are nice structural woodwork and some Tiffany windows. Most remarkable, however, is the chancel, with all its original furniture and brass fittings, and plaster walls stenciled in dull green, tan, and gold.

Writing Credits

William H. Jordy et al.


What's Nearby


William H. Jordy et al., "St. Peter's by the Sea", [Narragansett, Rhode Island], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Rhode Island, William H. Jordy, with Ronald J. Onorato and William McKenzie Woodward. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004, 369-369.

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