Cathedral of the Assumption, Louisville
The newly-built cathedral was nearly destroyed soon after its construction due to anti-Catholic and anti-immigrant bigotry which resulted in the killing of 22 German and Irish immigrants across the city. The Cathedral was believed to house weaponry in its basement and thus was threatened to be burned, but the then mayor of the city, John Barbee, himself a "Know-Nothing," inspected the church and cleared it of such accusations.
Throughout its existence, the Cathedral was exposed to a series of renovations. The structure was designed in Neo-Gothic architectural style. Both the exterior and the interior are adorned with rich decoration elements, including wood carved bosses, frescoes, arched windows and a beautiful grand organ, which is the focal point of religious events.
In 1985, the establishment of the Center for Interfaith Relations (formerly the Cathedral Heritage Foundation) began a push for renovation of existing facilities, expansion of the Cathedral complex, and revitalization of the Cathedral's mission to the broader community as a spiritual center in Louisville.
Renovation began in 1988 with the removal of sections of the Cathedral spire, along with the finial and cross. The year 1989 saw a comprehensive restoration plan adopted. In June 1991, after 100 years of disuse, the completely restored Cathedral undercroft was reopened. Finally, in February 1993, renovation on the main Cathedral space began and continued for nearly two years. The grand reopening of the Cathedral was celebrated in 1994, with a completely renovated Cathedral space. In June 1998, the Cathedral spire and bell tower were totally renewed.
The Cathedral complex now houses the main Cathedral building, with a Eucharistic chapel to the rear, as well as the Cathedral undercroft and St. Louis Hall, the Sandefur Dining Room for the homeless, the Patterson Education Center, the Cathedral school building (housing the parish offices), and the rectory, providing housing for the Archbishop and other Cathedral staff.
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Cathedral of the Assumption on Map
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