This continues my series of shots from 2009 that never quite made it up on flickr until now.


This old church on Chicago's north side has long sat empty. Over the years there have been several parties that have come forth and offered to save the building but for one reason or another the deals always fell apart. Earlier this year a deal was seemingly struck at the last minute to convert the main building into senior housing. But since the announcement progress has been slow moving and technically the archdiocese still owns the building and has a permit for its demolition.


Whatever the outcome it seems unlikely that this view will remain much longer.


The native resolution of this stitched image is about 12,000 x 10,000 pixels. In other words you could make a tack sharp print that would be about 40 in x 33 in.


Check out the larger view.


Or check out this huge version. Note this is still only about 20% of the full res file.


Here is a tighter shot taken a week earlier.


ISO 200 - f/8 - 6 sec. - 70 shots

  • Jamie H 6y

    Great shot, the tones and lighting are beautiful.
  • suephi_yippie! I have a camera again!!! 6y

    excellent job capturing the extent of decay in a very poetic way
    Seen on your photo stream. ( ?² )
  • Thad 6y

    Reminds me very much of this church in Philadelphia:

    No More Tunes Skeleton and Cross

    Is that real stonework in this Chicago church, or plaster? In the Philly church pictured, it's all very convincing plaster work...
  • Eric Holubow 6y

    Nice. I should revisit my pano too. Though this weekend's shoot will make catching up a bit more delayed.
  • John Crouch 6y

    Contrabass - What you see is mostly intricate plaster work. If you click on the huge file and look at one of the left columns you will see a pile of discarded plaster. It seems that someone was doing some exploratory work to check out the steel columns inside.
  • Thad 6y

    Ahh yes, it's considerably more obvious on the large shot. This church is in just as bad shape as the Philly one I linked to, which was closed in 1995. Time really ravages these places, doesn't it?
  • John Crouch 6y

    It is quite amazing what happens to a place after some water gets in. One or two bad winters can really tear a place apart.
  • Donovan Rees 6y

    What a fascinating scene - reminds me of some Polidori shots. How do you go about stitching an interior like this? Even with a very special tripod head I'd have thought you'd get all sorts of distortions...
  • Marco030783[a volte ritornano...] 6y

    an excellent image!
  • Rhonda Marie Rose 6y

    Wow I can think of many things this building could be and still keep it's beauty...but then I don't have two dimes to rub together...so why can't the money people do it? It would be a tragedy to see this go..Your image is wonderful...Thanks for sharing the picture and the info
  • Rodrigo Alvarez-Icaza 6y

    Beautiful my friend!
  • ikcawaz26 6y

    What a shame to lose such a beautiful church.
  • Senor Roboto 6y

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Terra-Cotta Chicago, and we'd love to have this added to the group!
  • photogger 5y

    Last time I was there the window I got in through before was boarded up with iron. =(
  • Daniel Jones 5y

    this is so awesome :]
  • mister.carpenter 5y

    It's so unfortunate when people who have no clue about architecture or a building's potential hold the cards...
    This main body could be turned into a dozen AMAZING apartment lofts...
  • John Crouch 5y

    @mister.carpenter - the good news is that all sides now seem committed to preserving the building, at least partially. This room would be gone to make way for a new structure for senior housing while the facade of the building would be saved.
  • Adriane Dizon 3y

    love the light and composition :D :D
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