St. Paul United Methodist Church (1912-14)
1340 3rd Avenue SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Architect: Louis Sullivan
When Chicago architect Louis Sullivan was commissioned to design a new church for the congregation, he lived in the town from 1910-1912. He designed a “modern church for a seven-day program” that included Sunday School space, a gymnasium, a sanctuary and a multi-colored glass dome in the auditorium. The building cost twice the amount the church was willing to spend so Sullivan was told to re-draw his plans. He resigned as architect after making minor changes that reduced the costs only slightly. He was not willing to sacrifice the ornamentation of his design. So architect W.C. Jones was hired to re-draw the Sullivan plans within the budget of $100,000. He made minor changes to the design, which is essentially still Sullivan’s work. Jones largely cut out many of the decorative ornamentation, such as four large angels on the church tower.
Here is a picture of the modified design after it was first completed.