Gospels in Stone: The Churches on the Hill

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Asylum Hill Congregational Church

814 Asylum Avenue, not the first of the churches to come up the Hill, but the oldest structure of the four. The chapel at the back of the church began holding services in 1864. The church was dedicated in 1866, and several major additions to the building, including the Parish House and the Gross Memorial Chapel, followed over the next 125 years.

Asylum Avenue Baptist Church

868 Asylum Avenue, originally built in 1872 and expanded in 1896, it was destroyed by a fire in the 1930s and then almost completely re-built according to the original design, which may or may not have been by George Keller. This church was the last of the four to arrive on the Hill.

Trinity Episcopal Church

120 Sigourney Street, the first of the four churches to come up the Hill but not the oldest structure. Originally, the church was a re-constructed Unitarian church that the parish bought and relocated from downtown Hartford in 1859-1860. That church was replaced by the current church in 1892.

Cathedral of Saint Joseph

140 Farmington Avenue, the seat of the Archdiocese of Hartford. The original brownstone cathedral was constructed in 1892 but was destroyed by a fire in 1959. The current building was completed in 1962.

Tour Details

A tour of the first four churches on Asylum Hill, all of which were built between 1860 and 1900, and represented the growth of Hartford's population westward from the original colonial settlement (i.e., downtown Hartford). The tour includes information on when and how the churches were built and what the architecture attempts to say to passersby, and typically the walking tour includes the interior of one of the four churches. The most compact tour we offer, it is easily completed in 45 minutes in person.

Tour Guide

Mary Falvey is the Executive Director of the Hartford Preservation Alliance and a dedicated historic preservationist. She is active in efforts to promote historic preservation as a means to revitalize Hartford, and she is working to better organize Hartford's varied and numerous historic districts.