Cathedral of The Sacred Heart

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Fronted by Richmond’s Monroe Park and forming the visual pivot between the city’s commercial area and the residential Fan District, the Cathedral of the Sacred Heart is a glorious celebration of Roman Catholic art and architecture. The domed Renaissance Revival edifice, along with its cloisters and bishop’s residence, is the work of Joseph H. McGuire, a New York architect whose practice centered on Roman Catholic churches and institutional buildings. It was begun in 1903 and completed in 1906 with funds given by financier, promoter, and philanthropist Thomas Fortune Ryan, a Nelson County native who made his fortune in New York. The cathedral’s interior, the most majestic ecclesiastical space in the state, is richly embellished with Renaissance-style architectural decoration. McGuire’s original drawings for the construction of the Cathedral of The Sacred Heart are preserved in Richmond’s Valentine Museum.

Last Updated: January 5, 2024

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VLR: Virginia Landmarks Register
NPS: National Park Service
NRHP: National Register of Historic Places
NHL: National Historic Landmark

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