Photo credit: Janet Davis , 05/1985

Property Name: St. Paul's Protestant Episcopal Church
Date Listed: 3/30/1973
Inventory No.: B-10
Location: 233, Charles St., N., Baltimore, Baltimore City

Description: The original design for St. Paul’s Church, indicated in Richard Upjohn’s perspective rendering of the façade, was a brick basilica, painted yellow, with a six-storied bell tower. The tower was only partially completed but the structure has nevertheless been called one of Upjohn’s best by Henry-Russell Hitchcock ("Early Victorian Architecture in Britain"). Structurally, the church is an eclectic juxtaposition of 12th-century Italian elements on the exterior and Romanesque elements on the interior. The façade is divided into flat sections broken by pilasters and the portico is supported by corbel arches. The basilica has round arches and barrel vaulting. Two bas-reliefs, executed by the Italian sculptor Capellano, depict Moses holding the tablets of the law and Christ breaking bread. They were originally part of the façade of the 1814 church, which burned. With their pedimental frame, they supply another neo-classical element. A stained glass window of the risen Christ over the entrance, a marble baptismal font, and the Bishop’s chair given to St. Paul’s in 1813 by George Grundy, were also rescued from the fire.

Significance: St. Paul’s Church in Baltimore has both architectural and historical importance. Designed by Richard Upjohn, one of the chief imitators of the Gothic Revival in America, it is one of Baltimore’s most important landmarks. Its historical associations stem largely from the numerous important figures who were members of the parish, including Samuel Chase, John Eager Howard, and Thomas Johnson.




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