Historic Structures

First Presbyterian Church, Rochester New York

Date added: May 4, 2010 Categories: New York Church

This particular structure is the third church for Rochester's oldest congregation, organized in 1815. The previous structure, a massive stone building, was destroyed by fire in 1869. The architect A. J. Warner not only received the commission for the new church, but also was the designer of the Rochester City Hall which was built on the site of the burned structure.

Over-all dimensions: Approximately sixty-two feet or three bays by eighty-nine feet or seven bays. Eighteen foot square tower at the northeast comer; rectangular chapel, thirty-one feet by sixty-eight feet adjoining the west wall. Three bay, two-and-one-half story social hall, attached at the southwest corner.

Floor plan: The nave with center aisle and flanking side aisles can be reached from the two east entrances and the north tower entrance. Access to the social hall to the south and the chapel vestibule to the north is provided by doors flanking the sanctuary. A cantilevered choir and organ loft supported by fluted cast iron columns is located at the east end. A basement, which can be reached from north and south exterior stairs, provides space for mechanical equipment, storage, and meeting and craft rooms. The chapel, with a raised platform to the south, can be entered from the north vestibule. The east entrance to the social hall provides access to church offices and the kitchen. The second floor contains school and meeting rooms.