Name This Place 12.3.3

Categories: Contest


23 replies

  1. First Baptist Church Columbus, MS


  2. Formerly located on the NE corner of Main & 7th Street in Columbus, it was destroyed in 1905 Builder/Architect was James. S Lull originally from Vermont, he constructed Camellia Place for himself.


  3. well, those darn candles took longer than i thought , and i wasn’t online to catch the beginning of this ‘challenge’-

    -know this bldg from ken p’pool’s reseearch. on lull major loss to city and state. tower is quirky, to say the least, and while there are engineering schemes devised by wren for spires that remained in use for a long time, i don’t believe the design impetus is wren— more likely those many neoclassical architects working in britain and other parts of the u.s , buildings by the former appear in illustrations in such volumes as shepherd and elmes’ ‘metropolitan improvements'(london) and a similar book on edinburgh’s neoclassical city improvements(‘modern athens’ was the title, i think). dakin, gallier, and howard were working in related forms in mobile and new orleans. if one squints, you can see so many 20th century baptist churches here, too.

    notice particularly that lull uses the ‘three-volute’ ionic column capital on the corner pillars and the front-and-back ionic volutes on the columns in the middle— much more ‘real ancient greek’ than many architects of that time who would have used 4 similar capitals like those in the center space— there is along story about ‘how does an ionic column turn a corner’ but not for here—–i will say that one doesn’t have this problem with doric, tuscan, corinthian, or composite columns because each of those forms looks the same from any angle—

    palladio’s pupil scamozzi solved the problem by creating a 4 volute ionic capital which looks the same from any angle— this ionic was frequently used in the colonial revival period— next time you see an ionic capital, see if you can tell ‘the type’—


    • The MDAH HRI cites St. Bride’s Church, Fleet Street London as an inspiring force, but doesn’t cite a source regarding the comment.

      R.H. Hunt & Co. were the architects for the building that replaced this one. Const. in 1908 it still stands today.

      The image must have been made shortly before the building came down because of the one-story structure in the image was built between 1905 and 1910.


  4. am straining my brain now–didn’t lull do another greek revival church in columbus with a 6 columned portico, also gone now…..?


  5. The current First Baptist Church, designed by R.H. Hunt, was constructed on the site in 1908.


  6. thanks for the st bride’s photo–certainly, some kind of influence, but i am thinking of how an image of such got the the u.s.,—-usually through print sources— views of london by someone, perhaps. and, think you all will laugh– i just googled,” metropolitan improvements shepard and elmes, image”s, on the net, and would you believe that because i mentioned the book in my post, there is now the connection to our quiz under this category! with the photo! yikes!


    • Ha! It’s true. MissPres often pops up for my searches first, but I wonder if that’s because Google knows how much time I spend on here anyways. Honestly, my first thought when seeing the tower for the first time was the First Baptist Church in Providence, RI. While its tower is not a repeated element like the Columbus FBC tower, it does have the wedding cake tiering, and it was a building that did inspire duplication.


    • Your search came up showing your comment because Metropolitan Improvements; or London in the Nineteenth Century: Being a Series of Views, of the New and Most Interesting Objects in the British Metropolis & Its Vicinity; from Original Drawings, with Historical, Topographical & Critical Illustrations is by James Elmes and Thomas H. Shepherd, not Shepard.

      Cornell University’s copy is available online:

      A brief biography of the two: “James Elmes (1782-1862), the son of a builder, trained at the Royal Academy Schools as an architectural designer, but his career encompassed publishing and writing on architecture as well. A friend of Benjamin Robert Haydon and his circle, he was the first publisher (in his Annals of Fine Arts) of Keats’ most famous odes. He was also the first biographer of Sir Christopher Wren (that book is also reissued in this series), and in this 1827 work he celebrates the architectural developments of the Regency (the book is dedicated to George IV), which he clearly feels are as beautiful and as transformative of the cityscape as were Wren’s new buildings after the Great Fire of 1666. The illustrations are by architectural draughtsman Thomas H. Shepherd (1793-1864), and the volume’s success led to his producing several more books of views of modern cities, including Edinburgh, Bath and Bristol.”


  7. glad you got my laugh–it was amusing since at the time that i found the image, a caption below it ‘said’ that it had been added ’36 minutes before’, so, definitely from my comment! st bride’s, fleet street ref is probably the closest, but we can’t forget the tremendous influence on steeple design from the work of james gibbs, 18th c english architect–in his actual buildings and in his 1728 ‘book of architecture’ proposed designs. fbc, providence is in the gibbsian mode.

    was able to find one of my battered copies of fletcher’s ‘a history of architecture on the comparative method’–this one is the 1956 version of the revised 1954 16th edition(the first edition was 1896 for those of you unfamiliar with ‘fletcher’), and, of course, wren’s work was greatly in vogue in the ‘a lot of wren’ in the book. fletcher gives drawings and illustrations of many of wren’s churches(including st bride’s) but he doesn’t think that the steeple is terribly successful.

    in the angle of the archival photo of fbc, columbus, the different levels of the steeple seem like they are ‘climbing’ in a corkscrew fashion, like that of dome-topper at s ivo della sapienza, rome(borromini, 1642-60); there was always the ‘problem’ of putting a tall focal point onto a neo-classical building since neither the greeks nor the romans had such. success in that category could be several posts, huh?


  8. mr white—thanks for the complete ionger post about ‘metropolitan improvements’; and, perhaps, in my typing haste, i can be forgiven a misspelled word–i am still working on those bottles for re-cycling amidst other things!….


  9. yikes–is that a flying saucer in the sky to the right of the steeple, above the tree?


  10. I didn’t know the church had been torn down. I thought it was added on to. I’ve heard that the columns in front are now on a home that is actually apartments a few streets away. First Baptist has been trying to sell the church for a few years now, claiming the old one is too expensive to keep up. They also bulldozed the “Friendship house” a while back claiming they needed the lot for parking, and it has not been used.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: