Historic St. Mary Church Architecture

European Architectural Influences and the Architects behind it.

Architectural Style of Romanesque Revival

St. Mary's Church is a Roman Catholic house of worship on Lodge Street part of downtown Albany, New York, United States. St. Mary's was part of the earliest Catholic missionary world that was established in the New World. By the 1796 the Catholics of Albany met to organize as a congregation and trying to seek out legal status within the Roman Catholic Church in the City of Albany. One year later in 1797, trustees soon moved to start building a church in Albany. Once the government of the State of New York decided that Albany would be the states capitals, that following fallin 1798 St. Mary’s Church was opened. Even thought it wasn’t fully completed until 1807. The building made out of brick, stood tall and about 50 feet square. The door opened on the side of Pine Street. No elaborate decorations, only a cross crowing the pyramid roof to identify a church stood there. After becoming a church in the 19th century it has gone through two different reconstructions. The structure is breathing taking and uses the architectural style of Italian Romanesque Revival of the outside of the church. This is a style that became popular in the mid-19th century. The Italian Romanesque style was establish by the medieval Europe architectural during the eleventh and twelfth centuries. Romanesque’s style can be characterized with the use of semi-circular arches. In addition this architectural style is also know for its use of thick walls, round arches, sturdy pillars, groin vaults (a double barrel vault which is produced by the intersection at a right angle). Large towers and decorative arcading which are the sequences of arches, each of the arches counter-trusting the next, columns and or piers hold it up. In contrast to the architectural style on the exterior, the interior of the church as a combination of Mannerist (characterized by the use of visual trickery used in other building such as Palazzo Te in Mantova) and French Gothic style. The Architects credit for building St. Mary Church is the partnership of Charles C. Nichols and Fredrick Brown. During there time together they had built five churches with in Albany alone and may more up and down the east coast. The church itself has been around sense 1643 but since that time the church has been moved and rebuilt a couple of time throughout the decades. After its last major construction in 1860s it became the third church to be house the oldest Catholic congregation throughout up-state New York.

Street Address:

10 Lodge St, Albany, NY 12207 [map]

Official Website:


Cite this Page:

Shannon M. , “Historic St. Mary Church Architecture,” Albany Walks for Health, accessed November 14, 2019, http://www.albanywalksforhealth.com/items/show/104.


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