Harrisburg in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Parish Church of St. Lawrence (Former)
Inscription. The prominence of Harrisburg's State Street, between the Capitol and the Susquehanna River, is enhanced by the presence of two Roman Catholic edifices. While the Cathedral of St. Patrick, closer to the Capitol, helps to capture the grandeur of the Capitol's domed neoclassicism, the former Parish Church of St. Lawrence, closer to the river, evokes serenity through its pure and elegantly crafted architecture of the European Gothic, the execution of which can be considered one of the finest in Central Pennsylvania. St. Lawrence Parish was founded in Harrisburg in 1859 by the area's German-speaking Catholics. The first church was located at 107 N. Front Street from 1860 to 1873. The growing parish then purchased land on Walnut Street facing Fifth Street, where the Forum Building now stands, and erected a large gothic-styled church building, completed in 1878, entirely under the supervision and largely by the manual labor of its pastor, Father Clement Koppernagle. This work however was relatively short-lived for in 1911, the Capitol Park Extension Bill would result in the clearance of the blocks of which St. Lawrence was a part for the development of the Capitol Complex. Having finalized an acceptable cash settlement from the Commonwealth for the property, the present location of the church was secured. Philadelphia Architect Paul Monaghan
By William Pfingsten, March 21, 2008
1. Parish Church of St. Lawrence (Former) Marker
was selected architect for the new structure, completed in April 1918. St. Lawrence, now the Chapel of St. Patrick Cathedral, is truly a successful execution of the Gothic. The sanctuary is rich in the use of marble, stained glass and carved wood with a high vaulted ceiling, rare polychrome decorative painting and a lavishly leaded rose window that dominates the building's facade.
By William Pfingsten, March 21, 2008
2. Parish Church of St. Lawrence
1918 photo by church architect of view toward front of sanctuary.
1918 photo by church architect of view toward rear of sanctuary.
Erected by The Harrisburg History Project Commissioned by Mayor Stephen R. Reed.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Pennsylvania, The Harrisburg History Project marker series.
Location. 40° 15.753′ N, 76° 53.277′ W. Marker is in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in Dauphin County. Marker is at the intersection of State Street and Front Street, on the right when traveling east on State Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Harrisburg PA 17101, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. St. Michaelís Lutheran Church (here, next to this marker); J. Donald Cameron (within shouting distance of this marker); J. Donald Cameron Mansion (within shouting distance of this marker); William Maclay Mansion (within shouting distance of this marker); The John Crain Kunkel and Katherine Smoot Kunkel Memorial (within shouting distance of this marker); William Maclay (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Genevieve Blatt (1913 - 1996) (about 300 feet away); The Civic Club of Harrisburg (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Harrisburg.
Categories. • 20th Century • Churches & Religion • Notable Buildings •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 29, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 1,742 times since then and 17 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on March 29, 2008, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland.