The Trinity Church in Boston is a parish of the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts. It is located on Copley Square of Back Bay in the city of Boston. The Trinity Church is the only church in the United States honored by the American Institute of Architects or AIA as one of the “Ten Most Significant Buildings in the United States.” The church is the only remaining building from the original 1885 list that is still included in the AIA current list. The church was also designated as a National Historic Landmark on December 30, 1970.
Trinity Church History
The current Trinity Church was constructed to replace the original church on Summer Street that perished with the Great Boston Fire of 1872. Construction of the current church was taken under the direction of Rector Phillips Brooks, one of the most popular and charismatic preachers during his time. Construction took place from 1872 to 1877. Architect Henry Hobson Richardson designed the church that became the first building to establish the Richardsonian Romanesque architectural style. Trinity Church was also the building that established the noted architect’s reputation.
Trinity Church Features
The Trinity Church is design plan is a modified Greek Cross. Its four arms extend outwards from the central tower. The highest point of the church stands 64 meters or 211 feet high. Copley Square in Boston’s Back Bay was originally a mud flat. In order to keep the foundation of the church stable, the building was constructed over 4,500 wooden piles. Each of the wooden pile was driven through 30 feet of gravel fill, silt and clay. The wooden piles are constantly dampened by the water table of Back Bay, preventing them from rotting if exposed to air.
Trinity Church is considered as the prime example of the Richardsonian Romanesque architectural style. It is characterized by the use of a clay roof, polychromy, heavy arches, rough stone and a central massive tower. The church is also known for its rich and colorful interiors, with murals covering over 21,500 sq. feet of the church.
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