Old South Church, Massachusetts

Old South Church (USA) — description, history, location. Exact address and website. Reviews of tourists, photos and videos.

“Old South Church”, also known as “New Old South Church” or “Third Church”, was historically owned by the Christ United Church congregation, which came into existence in 1669. The Gothic (or “Venetian”) Revival style building was designed by Charles Cummings and Willard Sears and built in 1873. In 1935-1937. the church was enlarged, and in 1970 it was designated a National Historic Landmark for its architectural features and as one of the finest examples of Victorian Gothic churches in New England. The church serves one of the oldest religious communities in the US. See acronymmonster for nickname of Massachusetts.

The definition of “Venetian” in relation to the architectural style of Old South Church emphasizes the fact that its builders were clearly inspired by famous Italian examples – in particular, St. Mark’s Cathedral. This is especially evident when looking at the dome. A hint of Moorish architecture can be seen in the multi-colored masonry.

For a Congregational church, which is usually characterized by puritanical dryness, the lush and eye-catching Old South Church looks highly atypical.

The external appearance of the church is very rich in terms of decor: here you can see numerous arches and different types of stone, which alternate with contrasting yellow-beige and dark red fragments. The porticoes and large open arches of the bell tower are trimmed with simple smooth stone, but the upper arches of the porticos are decorated with screens of iron ornaments. The roof of the building is lined with stripes of red and dark gray slabs. In general, for a Congregational church, which is usually characterized by puritanical dryness, the lush and pleasing to the eye Old South Church looks highly atypical.

But the most characteristic and recognizable feature of the Old South is the bell tower, which can be seen from different parts of Boston. On this 74 m high tower, located in the western part of the building, hangs a bell weighing more than 900 kg. The beautiful bell tower is already the second one on this site: it was built in the 1930s, replacing the former one that had begun to collapse.

Be sure to go inside to admire the amazing Tiffany stained glass windows.

The interior of the church is fully consistent with its bright and catchy exterior. It has been remodeled several times and as a result retains traces of several architectural styles, including Colonial Revival and Minimalism. The altar part is also reminiscent of Venetian architecture, only of the Doge’s Palace.

Cherry wood paneling and benches set a warm tone, as do the wall paintings with their many stained glass windows. Pay attention to the five-part stained-glass window in the window of the eastern wall: it depicts the scene of the appearance of the infant Jesus in front of the shepherds. Above is a Christmas manger surrounded by seven angels playing musical instruments, and on the left and right are the Alpha and Omega windows, which symbolize the Lord as the beginning and end of all things.

Old South Church is often confused with Old South Meeting House (aka Old South Meeting Hall) – a building on the Way of Freedom, which was also historically and architecturally a church. There is a lot of confusion due to the fact that the names of both are often shortened to “Old South”. In fact, a museum has been opened in the “Old South Church” today, and the “New Old” was built just to replace it.

Practical Information

Address: 645 Boylston Street.

The church stands at the intersection of Dartmouth and Boylston streets, the T-line stop “Copley”. You can also take buses number 9, 10, 39 and 55.

Opening hours: the church is open to the public on weekdays from 8:00 to 19:00, on Saturday from 10:00 to 16:00, on Sunday from 8:30 to 19:00.

Old South Church, Massachusetts