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Grace Church Entrance
Photograph courtesy of Scenic America: Deborah L. Myerson

This much-admired specimen of the earlier, more picturesque interpretation of the Gothic Revival is the only known Virginia work of William Strickland, a leading American architect of the first half of the 19th century. Strickland is better known for his monumental Greek Revival works. He designed commercial and administrative buildings, theaters, and churches. He also designed engineering projects, including several railroads, canals and dams. Strickland played a major role in the transformation of the city of Philadelphia due to the size and number of his commissions there. He also contributed to the gradual professionalization of the architectural field. Grace Church, built c.1847, is a rare example of his Gothic style. The church was commissioned by Judith Walker Rives of nearby Castle Hill. Strickland's original drawings are preserved

Grace Church
Photograph courtesy of Scenic America: Deborah L. Myerson
at the University of Virginia. The original interior woodwork, executed by E.S. McSparren, an English master carpenter, was destroyed by fire in 1895. The church was soon rehabilitated with a new roof, new interior, and chancel addition. Its walls and tower remain essentially as designed and continue to serve an active congregation.

Grace Church is located on the southeast side of Rte. 231, .5 mile northeast of its intersection with Rte. 600, east of Cismont. The church is open Monday-Friday, 9:00am to 3:00pm. Call 804-293-3549 for further information.


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