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San Fernando Cathedral

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1749; c. 1873 facade and nave, François P. Giraud; 1977 restoration, Ford, Powell and Carson; 2003 interior restoration, Fisher Heck Architects. 114 Main Plaza

The apse and low dome at the core of the cathedral are the remnants of the original parish church built by Canary Islanders, and are visible at the rear of the enlarged building. The cathedral as it appears today is largely a product of the 1870s, the work of Giraud, who was born in Charleston, South Carolina. He served as San Antonio's first city surveyor in the 1840s, but did not seem to consider himself limited to that profession. As the seat of an archbishop, the cathedral is perhaps not as large as expected given the dominance of the Catholic Church in the city. The eighteenth-century core of the interior has been restored to its original mission-like simplicity, with plain whitewashed walls that are an austere interior in contrast to the lively facade.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Gerald Moorhead et al.
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Data

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Citation

Gerald Moorhead et al., "San Fernando Cathedral", [San Antonio, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/TX-01-SA46.

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 157-157.

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