Sacred Sites Program

Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites

Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Main Street Baptist Oneonta
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Young Israel of Flatbush
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-St. John's Huntington
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-St Luke's Sea Cliff
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Smithfield Presbyterian Church
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Albany Friends Meetinghouse
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Congregation Ramath Orah
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Church of the Transfiguration
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
Conservancy Awards $240,000 in 23 Grants for Sacred Sites
-Baker Memorial East Aurora

April 2015

On April 17th, the Conservancy’s Sacred Sites Committee met and pledged over $240,000 in 23 grants to historic religious institutions throughout New York State, from the Lower East Side to Buffalo. These included one Sacred Sites Challenge grant totaling $30,000, to help fund $340,000 of masonry and window restoration at the south elevation of the “Little Church Around the Corner,” a Gothic Revival landmark on East 29th Street dating from 1849, and home to the Episcopal Actors’ Guild. The Conservancy awarded a record-setting four Jewish Heritage Fund challenge grants totaling $125,000, including $50,000 to Congregation Ramath Orah, a Classical Revival structure in Morningside Heights, towards an ambitious, $390,000 roof restoration project.

Ramath Orah was originally constructed in 1921-22 as the West Side Unitarian Church, and then repurposed as a synagogue in 1945 by refugees escaping the Nazi occupation of Luxembourg. Jewish Heritage grants of $25,000 each were awarded to the 1847, early Renaissance Revival Community Synagogue in the East Village to fund structural repairs, to the 1923, Moorish Revival Young Israel of Flatbush in Brooklyn to fund bronze door replacement, and to the 1889, Moorish Revival, individually designated landmark Park East Synagogue, on the Upper East Side, to fund roof replacement.

The Conservancy pledged an additional 18 Sacred Sites grants totaling $75,000, which will help fund 10x that amount, or $750,000 in repair and restoration projects including masonry, stained glass and slate roof restoration. The eighteen grants also included a $1,500 grant to fund the consulting services of a preservation architect at Smithfield Presbyterian Church, a handsome, highly intact, 1847 temple-fronted Greek Revival church in Dutchess County. Smithfield Presbyterian is currently fundraising for the comprehensive, $325,000 restoration of its structurally compromised, monumental wooden portico. The Conservancy’s initial planning grant will strengthen Smithfield’s application for a Conservancy challenge grant this June. The Conservancy awarded grants to two Long Island churches, $6,000 to the 1892, Queen Anne style St. Luke’s in Seacliff for a $75,000 project to install new protective glazing, and $4,000 to St. John’s Episcopal Church in Huntington, towards $30,000 tower masonry restoration. Other matching grants included $5,000 to Main Street Baptist Church in Oneonta, a Romanesque Revival church constructed in 1889, to replace its 1992 asphalt shingle roof with a new slate roof, a $150,000 project, and $4,000 to Albany Friends Meeting, housed in an 1897 Victorian Mansion, to complete the final $40,000 phase of its slate roof restoration. Baker Memorial United Methodist Church in East Aurora, a Collegiate Gothic church constructed in 1926, was awarded $6,000 for restoration of masonry entrance steps and deteriorated stone chimneys.