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Sacred Heart Catholic Church

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1893, Nicholas J. Clayton. W. Oak St. at N. Queen St.

The I&GN donated land for a Catholic church, recognizing the need among its employees arriving from Catholic regions of Texas. St. Joseph, the first church, was destroyed by fire in 1890. Sacred Heart is a Gothic Revival design, built of site-made molded brick using mud from the Trinity River. The bricks were first painted white in 1948 and later plastered. The steep-gabled facade is bracketed by a pinnacled turret on the west corner and a two-stage tower on the east corner, where the plans originally called for an additional stage and a spire, but these were not built due to concern about loads on the foundation. The boldly projecting and corbeled brickwork of pointed arches, cornices, and buttresses are signature features of Clayton’s work.

Writing Credits

Gerald Moorhead et al.


What's Nearby


Gerald Moorhead et al., "Sacred Heart Catholic Church", [Palestine, Texas], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas: East, North Central, Panhandle and South Plains, and West, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2019, 71-71.

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