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the roof.

Main Entrance The main entrance, set within a slightly projecting pavilion, has a Gothic-arched

surround with spiral, rope, rose, decorative flat, and foliate moldings springing from pilasters and spiral

columns with foliate capitals. The double wooden doors are surmounted by a leaded glass transom set within a

surround with spiral, decorative flat, and foliate moldings and a puti keystone. The entrance is surmounted by a plain stone plaque and a terra-cotta relief of the Holy Family and Dove, with a cobalt blue densely-glazed background, set within the arch. The pavilion is terminated by a pedimented foliate cornice with a molded stone cap and copper coping. A sign is placed to the west of the doorway. Side (Aisle) Entrance Sections Each entrance, set within a surround with spiral, decorative flat, and foliate moldings and a putto keystone, has double wooden doors surmounted by a leaded glass transom and plain stone plaque. This is surmounted by a blind Gothic interlaced arcade that is terminated by a foliate cornice. The upper portion has a trapezoidal- shaped terra-cotta relief of an angel set on a cobalt blue densely-glazed background and having a disk motif surround. Each side is terminated by a foliate cornice following the slope of the roof and molded copper coping. The cornerstone, at the east corner, bears the inscription “A + D MCMII”. Areaway An original decorative wrought-iron fence is set on a bluestone base. Paving is concrete, with bluestone steps leading to the

entrances.

Central Upper Section

The central section is flanked by the banded pilasters rising from the main

entrance section; these pilasters have articulated side returns. The large molded central rose window, embellished by a decorative metalwork cross and flanked by four corner rosettes, is set within a molded square surround, set above a blind Gothic interlaced arcade. Above the window, the typanum is clad in diaperwork consisting of triangular sections of cream- and blue- (now weathered) colored terra-cotta accented with copper stars. A terra-cotta roundel with a cobalt blue densely-glazed background bears a relief of the head of Christ. The section is terminated by a pedimented foliate cornice and molded copper coping. A simple cross, placed at

the peak, replaces the original, more elaborate one.

West Wall The west wall of the church, clad in red brick,

is unarticulated and pierced by windows. A side areaway has a metal gate and steps.

East Wall

The east wall

of the church, clad in red brick, is unarticulated and pierced by windows. A Gothic-arched entrance at the south end has bluestone steps, a non-historic metal door, and a pointed-arched transom (now painted). A side areaway

has a metal gate/fence and steps. At the north end of the areaway, the south wall of the side chapel, with a Gothic stained glass window, is partially visible.

Report prepared by JAY SHOCKLEY Research Department

NOTES

1.

Adapted from: LPC, Abyssinian Baptist Church and Community House Designation Report (LP-1851)(N.Y.: City of New York, 1993), prepared by Christopher Moore and Andrew S. Dolkart.

  • 2.

    These houses are located within the St. Nicholas Historic District.

  • 3.

    All three churches are designated New York City Landmarks.

  • 4.

    Cynthia Hickman, Harlem Churches a the End of the 20th Century: An Illustrated Guide (N.Y.: Dunbar Pr.,

2001), xi.

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