St. Stephen's Episcopal Church (Philadelphia)

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St. Stephen's Episcopal Church
Saint Stephen's Episcopal Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - 20110606.jpg
St. Stephen's Episcopal Church (Philadelphia) is located in Philadelphia
St. Stephen's Episcopal Church (Philadelphia)
Location 19 South 10th Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Coordinates: 39°57′2.61″N 75°9′24.72″W / 39.9507250°N 75.1568667°W / 39.9507250; -75.1568667
Built 1822
Architect William Strickland (1822)
Frank Furness (1879)
Architectural style Gothic Revival
Governing body St. Stephen's Episcopal Church
NRHP Reference # 79002329[1]
Added to NRHP June 4, 1979

St. Stephen's Episcopal Church is a historic parish of the Episcopal Diocese of Pennsylvania, founded in 1822 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and located at 19 South Tenth Street, on the corner of Tenth Street and Ludlow Street. St. Stephen's was designed by William Strickland in the Gothic revival style. It is the oldest extant building in Philadelphia in this style and was designed by a master of the Greek Revival style, thus marking the beginning of the end of the use of the Neo-Classical style in Philadelphia.[2] St. Stephen's first service was held on February 27, 1823. On June 4, 1979, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places.


Franklin Kite Plaque

Strickland was inexperienced in designing Gothic Revival buildings, as were other American architects at the time. The National Register of Historic Places nomination form states "The structure is imperfect Gothic, but Gothic nevertheless." In particular, there is little emphasis on vertical elements, as is usual in Gothic architecture. Architect Frank Furness added a transept and vestry room in 1879. Artwork includes a Venetian glass mosaic, three early Tiffany windows, three monumental sculptures by Carl Johann Steinhauser, and until it was purchased by the Philadelphia Museum of Art in 2004, the sculpture The Angel of Purity by Augustus Saint-Gaudens.[2]

A plaque on the outside front wall reads: "THIS CHURCH IS BUILT ON THE SITE WHERE BENJ. FRANKLIN FLEW HIS FAMOUS KITE," though the provenance of the marker is unclear, and apparently unrelated to the oval Philadelphia Historical Commission marker above it.

See also[edit]



  1. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2007-01-23. 
  2. ^ a b Martin Aurand, 1978, NRHP Nomination Form for St. Stephen's Church Enter "public" for ID and "public" for password to access the site.

External links[edit]