It is rare for me to go inside one of the many buildings that I photograph. In fact, my first instinct was to photograph the church from the car, thanks to the two very large and barking dogs that came running up when I pulled to the side of the road after spotting this carpenter Gothic abandoned church on First Avenue and Wise Street. However, a drive down the block and return and the dogs had gone home to nap in the pleasant sun of that afternoon. Feeling emboldened by their non-attention while I was walking around the outside, I decided to just step up to the open door of the vestibule and take a quick peek inside...which turned into a full-fledged visit.
Entrance to the sanctuary was at two angles, due to the corner entry. One set of doors opened toward the side of the sanctuary, creating a path toward the other part of the building and the choir loft, and one opened directly to the side aisle of the sanctuary and pews.
While the roof is still intact, the broken and missing panes in the windows have opened the building to birds, who have determined the backs of the pews are a fine roost. I felt a sense of sadness, seeing streams of bird droppings where people once sat while contemplating their inner spiritual lives, the outer demonstration--or lack of--and planned and hoped and dreamed...and yes, some who impatiently waited for a final Amen and the end of a weekly ritual.
I tried to imagine having sat in that sanctuary in 1910--albeit in different seating. The folding wooden attached chairs debuted as early as the 1890s, and came in a variety of simple styles, and some with decorative cast iron end pieces.American Seating Company manufactured many of the ones sold in the US. Had I thought to look, I could have searched for indication of the manufacturer. Hind sight is rarely helpful, unless it is recalled in the next opportunity. All too often, though, we forget the little details that later we wish we had thought to check.