Day 121

St. Thomas Church

April 29th, 2012

The previous incarnation of this church, built in 1870 after the parish moved uptown, burned down in 1905. It's said that while plans were being drawn up for a new structure, the rector became so distressed by the aftermath of the 1906 San Francisco earthquake that he donated the entirety of the church's building fund to the relief effort, but this does not appear to be confirmed by any contemporaneous newspaper accounts. Whatever the case, excavation for the new edifice was underway by 1910, when one particularly violent blast sent stones flying across the neighborhood, onto and into many of the sumptuous mansions surrounding the site on Fifth Avenue.

Restoration of the church's 33 stained glass windows, which contain around 9 million individual pieces of glass, began a few years ago. It's an incredibly painstaking process, involving the extraction and cleaning of each piece of glass, and the total reconstruction of each window, with all findings carefully documented for the benefit of future restorers. Speaking of documentation, check out this video!

One Comment

  1. Gigi says:

    That was a very interesting vid, thanks for the link!

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