St. James Episcopal Church

4526 Albany Post Road, Hyde Park, NY

Gothic Revival brick & stucco church built in 1844

Photo 

St.James Episcopal Church

Photo taken by Richard Doody in 1989

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Description 

The parish of St. James was established in 1811. Its first church was built of brick and stone, stuccoed and painted yellow. It measured 30 feet by 50 feet with a short square battlemented tower at the west end. Records show the cost of the edifice was $2701.75. In 1839, an inspection of the church revealed that the building had structural faults so extensive that it should be replaced.

The present Gothic Revival church with its black walnut ceiling and open-timbered roof support was completed in November 1844. The 140 year old church was devastated by a fire on June 10, 1984 but most items in the sacristy and altar area were spared. However, the bell, the organ, all but one stained glass window, most of the memorial wall plaques, the carpeting, and many of the pews were lost or damaged beyond repair. The church has since been restored to its 1844 architectural splendor.

St. James’ Church is best known through the membership of the Roosevelt family. President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his family worshiped here, and he was actively involved in the parish as both Vestryman and Senior Warden, even during his presidency. On June 11, 1939, King George the VI and Queen Elizabeth visited the church with President and Mrs. Roosevelt. Eleanor Roosevelt’s funeral here in 1962 was attended by President and Mrs. John F. Kennedy and former Presidents Harry S. Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower, and future President Lyndon B. Johnson.

Tags 

19th Century (37,324)
Built 1844 (181)
Built during 1840s (2,978)
Church (5,637)
Dutchess County, New York (265)
New York (6,067)
Place of worship (6,001)

Update Log 

  • March 2, 2019: New photo from Richard Doody
  • March 2, 2019: Added by Richard Doody

Sources 

  • Richard Doody