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St. George Maronite Catholic Church (St. Paul's Episcopal Church)

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St. Paul's Episcopal Church
1852–1853, Samuel J. Ladd(?). 1865, west aisle, Clifton A. Hall; redecoration, Cattanach and Cliff. 50 Main St. (at Lennon Ln.)

So rural in aspect is this rough-hewn, broad-gabled Gothic Revival church that it seems misplaced in the city. A local mason, more familiar with mills than churches, is its most likely designer. Indeed, the helmet capping of its stocky spire, drawn down tightly around the bell, relates most closely to the treatment of certain mill towers, like that for the Valley Falls Mill in nearby Central Falls (see CF10). However, the forceful shaping of the tower, from stepped corner buttressing at its base to corners sliced into a semioctagon above to contain the bell, as well as the combination of rough texture and meticulous craftsmanship in the handling of the stone, indicate more than ordinary competence in its design. Clifton Hall's 1865 addition of the aisle (on the entrance side of the church only) with its dormered “clerestory” provides the other notable exterior feature. At the same time, the firm of Cattanach and Cliff redecorated the interior. Although repainting has lightened the walls and disturbed the intended tonality of the space, some decorative patterning remains. More important, symbols of the four Evangelists and of the Apocalypse pierce the shadow with heraldic intensity, as a rare reminder of High Church ceiling decoration from the mid-nineteenth century. Stained glass and Victorian marble plaques complete the setting.

Writing Credits

Author: 
William H. Jordy et al.
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Citation

William H. Jordy et al., "St. George Maronite Catholic Church (St. Paul's Episcopal Church)", [Pawtucket, Rhode Island], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/RI-01-PA21.

Print Source

Buildings of Rhode Island, William H. Jordy, with Ronald J. Onorato and William McKenzie Woodward. New York: Oxford University Press, 2004, 146-147.

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