Archive for May 7, 2013
Whenever you think about the parts that go into making up a church, you may think of church furniture such as church pews. In fact, you may have even gone looking for church pews for sale before. However, what few people stop to really think about are the church steeples, which on some churches has been around longer and thus contains more history than the pews themselves. The American church steeples actually originated in Europe and thus has been heavily influenced by this country. In fact, many early American settlers actually brought church steeples with them because they felt that this was the proper design for a church. European churches were thought to have the correct church architecture and the new settlers didn’t want the churches in their new home land to be lacking in grandness or detail. At that time Georgian architecture was in fashion. These can still be spotted today thanks to their grandness and their intricate details too. This is something that the early settlers in America wanted to have echoed within their churches too. However, since metal was too hard to obtain at that time, American church steeples were made from wood and painted white. Those who could afford to do so had their steeples made out of copper so that there wouldn’t be a lot of maintenance involved. Otherwise they were typically covered with slate shingles. Inside you’d typically find the bronze or steel church bell. Then on top you’d find either a cross, a weather vane, or a decorative finial. Over the course of time the church steeple became an important architectural design feature. It also became a visual testimony to everyone who would ever walk by or into a church. So, the next time you pass by one, you should take a moment to stop and think about the rich history and the deep meaning of such steeples.