St. Andrew's Episcopal Church (Walden, New York) - Aesthetics



Like Upjohn and other Episcopal architects designing churches for that faith in the mid-19th century, Babcock was strongly influenced by articles and essays in The Ecclesiologist, a journal published by members of England's Oxford Movement, which sought a return to more traditional religious practices in Anglicanism. In architecture that meant the older forms of the English country parish church, many built during the Middle Ages, such as St Michael's Church, Longstanton, which has a similar main block to St. Andrew's.

Babcock's initials are found on many sketches of Upjohn's, including one church with tower in Upjohn's pattern book Rural Architecture that strongly resembles St. Andrew's. Christ Church in Ballston Spa, completed by Upjohn's office after he left, also bears a resemblance, although its massing and decoration are less restrained than Babcock typically was.

For St. Andrew's, he offset the tower to the side, a variation that had become popular with Ecclesiological architects around the mid-19th century. This created a more Picturesque effect than leaving it in the center. Because of this, and the limitations of the lot, the church's chancel is on the west end rather than liturgical east as most Ecclesiologist-influenced churches do.

The rectory, completed slightly after the main church, shows more vernacular influences of its day, and those of later renovations. Its main design is Italianate, but the current porch, rebuilt in the early 20th century, is a Craftsman-style treatment of the original.

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