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Union Baptist Church
Union Baptist Church Westchester County Inventory
Union Baptist Church is listed on the Westchester County Inventory only.
It is not listed on the National or State Registers; nor is it locally listed.

Union Baptist Church

Municipality:                                        New Rochelle
Street Number:                                     438
Street Address:                                    Main Street
County Landmark Status?                     Yes 10/15/93
Institutional Owner:                               Congregation of the Union Baptist Church
Architect:                                             Fletcher and Jennings
Builder:                                                V.J. Hedden and Sons
Building Type:                                       Religious
Architectural Style:                                Neo-Romanesque
Current Use:                                         Religious
Original Use:                                         Religious
Structural Condition:                              Good
Neighborhood:                                       Residential
Site Integrity:                                        Original Site
Year Built:                                            1904
Photograph Available?                           Yes 

Alterations:  Steeple removed from bell tower in1946; main entrance lighting fixtures removed; protective outer doors added; metal railings and signs added to main entrance; decorative door hinges on north entrances added in 1949; asphalt shingles added; west exterior double doors added; Wurlitzer electric organ installed in 1949; lighting fixtures possibly early-twentieth century replacements; attic window replaced by vent on rear dormer on west façade; replacement double doors at south entrance; one-story storage stucco and concrete block additions at the southeast corner of the building; main façade central round-headed window wood molding lost.

Date of Alterations                                   1946; 1949

Significance:  The Union Baptist Church, originally the Salem Baptist Church, designed by architect Arthur Bates Jennings (1849-1927), is a fine example of the Neo-Romanesque style. The building is one of the few houses of worship in Westchester that is illustrative of the open, oblique spatial arrangement known as the Akron Plan that was popular at the turn of the century. The church played a brief role in the national defense during the First World War when it housed some of the overflow of soldiers that had exceeded the capacity of the nearby Fort Slocum, which was then an important staging area for troops bound for France. The building's construction of Tuckahoe marble reflects the robustness of Westchester local industry of the time.

Description: Center city site, .28 acre, incorporating a two-story hipped roof stone church, constructed in 1904. Contains a stone, brick and asbestos shingled extension, original to the building; two small later rear additions; a two-and-one-half story c.1900 parsonage, now clad in asbestos shingles; a stone perimeter wall with a wrought iron fence; and an interior walkway between the church and the parsonage. The sanctuary section of the church is constructed of rough-dressed randomly coursed ashlar Tuckahoe marble with a water table at the level of the raised basement. The asphalt shingled hip roof, with exposed rafter ends and cross gables on the north and east, terminates in an octagonal louvered ventilator. A chimney of buff-colored brick is located at the juncture between the building’s two sections. Sanctuary fenestration is primarily wood frame and sash double-hung windows, flat-arched on the first story and round-arched above, most with lead-camed multicolored stained glass, all with marble sills. The main façade is framed by a two-story flat-roofed square projecting bay with secondary entrance and a three-story bell tower recessed behind the main entrance. Interior features in the sanctuary include stenciled ceilings with molded beams, vertical board wainscoting, multicolored intermediate cornices, and pews curved to face the pulpit. The ancillary extension is 2 stories in height, five bays deep and seven bays wide with a marble foundation. Much of the original detail remains in this extension. The parsonage, an American Four-Square style building with Colonial Revival detail, is primarily intact. For more details on the Union Baptist Church refer to the files maintained by the Westchester County Historical Society.