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St Joseph Cathedral & Rectory, Buffalo

4.9
#7 of 7 in Historic Sites in Buffalo
Religious Site Tourist Spot
Saint Joseph Cathedral, is located at 50 Franklin Street, in downtown Buffalo, New York and is currently the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Buffalo.HistoryBuffalo's first bishop, John Timon, established St. Joseph's in 1847 to be the new diocese's cathedral. Because of the economic situation in the city he raised funds to build the church while he was in Europe. New York architect Patrick C. Keely, who had worked with A. W. N. Pugin, was chosen to design the new church. The cornerstone was laid on February 6, 1851. During construction a storm struck the city off of Lake Erie and destroyed several homes in the area. Bishop Timon allowed the residents to set up tents within the cathedral's walls for several weeks. The cathedral was usable, but not complete, when it was dedicated on July 1, 1855. The south tower was completed in the summer of 1862. Bishop Timon consecrated the completed cathedral on August 21, 1863.Although the original plans called for two towers on the north and south ends of the facade; only the south tower was built. The Cathedral's tower contained a 43-bell carillon that was made by Bollee & Son, in Le Mans France. At the time of its completion in 1869, the clarion was the largest in America and the third largest in the world. Installed in St. Joseph's in 1870, the bells were too large for the cathedral's tower and never worked properly. Currently all but 2 of the bells have been removed from the church tower. Bishop Stephen V. Ryan had the Lady Chapel built in the rear of the cathedral in 1873. The loft in the rear of the church contains a 3,627 pipe Hook & Hastings organ. The organ was originally built in 1876 for the Philadelphia Centennial Exposition, where it was played frequently for concerts. It was moved to the Cathedral following the end of the Exposition in November, 1876.
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4.9
  • Well worth the time. History and relics in the vestibule were interesting and architecture is outstanding. Parking on the street.  more »
  • This Cathedral is beautiful and worth a (respectful) visit to see one of the oldest places of worship in Buffalo. The organ is massive with 5,300 pipes - possibly during a service, one might hear it p...  more »
  • This cathedral is so beautiful, you feel the peace an present of God here,please go an visit it, you will no regreat you stop by  more »
Google
  • The architecture of this building is amazing, you wont find stuff like this anymore
  • Beautiful church