Jewels in Her Crown: Treasures of Columbia University Libraries Special Collections

Exhibition Themes > Art & Architecture > 64. Minard Lafever

64.  Minard Lafever (1797-1854).  Drawings for unbuilt church in Brooklyn Heights. Mixed media, 1840. Avery Library, Drawings and Archives

Lafever's reputation rests on two aspects of his career. In the 1820s and 1830s, the architect published several works that promoted the Greek Revival style. His Modern Builder's Guide, first printed in 1833, had seven editions by 1855, its popularity due to its designs for townhouse, then gaining fashion in New York. Lafever was also known for his Gothic Revival churches, mostly executed in Brooklyn. Upjohn's Trinity Church, begun in 1839, had sparked this interest in Gothic Revival churches. These drawings are designs for an unbuilt church on Henry and Montague, which may be an early version of Holy Trinity on Montague Street. It was perhaps too expensive for the funds raised by subscription. This drawing is bound in a book of specifications for the church along with other drawings and a print of Holy Trinity as built.

Purchased through the New York Chapter American Institute of Architects Heritage Ball fund, 1989

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