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Churches of Minnesota

An Illustrated Guide

2003
Author:

Alan K. Lathrop
Photography by Bob Firth

Churches of Minnesota

An inspiring exploration of the architectural heritage of Minnesota’s churches

Alan Lathrop profiles more than one hundred religious buildings in a compendium made even richer by the photography of Bob Firth. More than 140 black-and-white and full-color images reveal the intrinsic character of these buildings and Lathrop uncovers the enchanting stories behind the lives of those connected to each church—the architects, the leaders, the parishioners—and the history that brought them to where they are today.

Minnesota’s churches—from mighty urban cathedrals to tiny wooden structures built on lonely hilltops by immigrant carpenters—constitute a living legacy of architecture and faith. Alan Lathrop’s expert guide, illustrated with Bob Firth’s handsome photographs, offers an impressive documentation of this heritage. Anyone interested in the architecture or history of Minnesota will want to own this book.

Larry Millett

Churches are among the most profound and long-lasting expressions of faith, reflecting the heritage, beliefs, and traditions of their congregations. Whether they are elaborate or austere, traditional or modern, they are places to visit and admire, whatever your creed. In Churches of Minnesota, Alan Lathrop profiles more than one hundred religious buildings in a valuable compendium made even richer by the photography of Bob Firth. More than 140 black-and-white and full-color images present a comprehensive view of the architectural styles that make up Minnesota’s religious and cultural heritage.

Lathrop embarked on a journey to explore the architectural histories of churches in every corner of Minnesota, and what he found was a panorama of designs steeped in the traditions of their communities. From the board and batten siding on the tiny St. Mark’s Episcopal Chapel in Annandale to the grand elegance of St. Paul’s cathedral, Lathrop discusses a variety of architectural styles in both urban and rural settings across the state. He reveals the intrinsic character of these buildings and uncovers the enchanting stories behind the lives of those connected to each church—the architects, the leaders, the parishioners—and the history that brought them to where they are today.

By enticing his readers to explore the pleasures of architecture, Lathrop has created a valuable resource not only for those with an interest in ecclesiastical design and tradition, but also for anyone who simply cherishes the beauty and character of Minnesota’s churches.


Churches of Minnesota

Alan K. Lathrop is professor and curator of the Northwest Architectural Archives, University of Minnesota Libraries. He has written numerous publications on regional architecture, including articles for Architecture Minnesota and Minnesota History.

Bob Firth is the owner of Firth Photobank in Carver, Minnesota. He has published a book of photographs, with text by Bill Holm, titled Landscape of Ghosts.

Churches of Minnesota

Minnesota’s churches—from mighty urban cathedrals to tiny wooden structures built on lonely hilltops by immigrant carpenters—constitute a living legacy of architecture and faith. Alan Lathrop’s expert guide, illustrated with Bob Firth’s handsome photographs, offers an impressive documentation of this heritage. Anyone interested in the architecture or history of Minnesota will want to own this book.

Larry Millett

This useful paperback shows the variety of houses of worship in this state. Author Alan Lathrop wanted to explore the architectural histories of our churches, and he found that designs reflected the traditions of their communities. From the Cathedral of St. Paul to little St. Mark's Episcopal Chapel in Annandale, this is a delightful stroll through Minnesota history and faith.

St. Paul Pioneer Press

Historian Alan K. Lathrop and photographer Bob Firth have chronicled over 150 churches from around the state and have included them in a new illustrated guide book: Churches of Minnesota. Together they take readers on a virtual trip all across the state as a travel companion and information resource to some of the state’s most interesting churches that played important roles in Minnesota’s culture. There’s much to be learned and enjoyed.

Fairfax Standard-Gazette

There are many faces between the beautiful and the humble. Thankfully, Alan K. Lathrop’s Churches of Minnesota shows them all. Those who appreciate history and those inspired by viewing a church will also welcome this book.

Minnesota History