49 Division St.
Newport, Rhode Island
While visiting Newport a couple of summers ago, we passed a Gothic Revival church with a historic placard proclaiming it, "Union Congregational Church, built 1881, First Free Black Church in America."
I shot a photo of it and planned to look into it further.
I just stumbled across the photo again and did a little digging.
The original building was erected in 1783 by the Fourth Baptist Church. It was later purchased by the Union Congregational Church, a community of free African Americans. The first structure was demolished in 1871, and replaced with the Gothic Revival building that stands there now.
According to the property's website, the detail work reflects the housewrights copying the architecture of 12th century churches.
I haven't been able to figure out when it was deconsecrated, but it's now rental property for multiple tenants.
The following images are from 49 Division Street.
|Entrance Foyer Stairs|
|Sitting Area with TV|
|Guest balcony above kitchen|
|Library and Office|
I'm fascinated by churches being converted into residential space. It looks like they did justice to the architecture of this one.