The End of an Old Church

This weekend, I attended a conference hosted by the Institute for European and Mediterranean Archaeology at the University of Buffalo that focused on monumentality in the archaeological record. At the end of the conference, we had a short but thought-provoking discussion of anti-monuments. These were monuments that seemed to subvert the very notion of monumentality (which itself was a tricky thing to define). 

When I got back to Grand Forks and saw that our old church on Walnut Street was coming down a few days earlier, it got me thinking. (For more on this church, check out Chris Price’s excellent history and, if you feel like it, buy a copy of the book here).


The removal of the steeple reminded me of so many mosques in Greece where the top of the minarets have been removed.


The famous granitoid pavement in the foreground presents the contrasting issues of conservation in our community. An old church is more expendable than pavement.


The de-churched steeple was a depressing sight this morning.

One Comment

  1. Sad to see it go, but now I’ll have to go get a couple pictures of it coming down for volume 2.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s