Burlington, Iowa on the Mississippi
321 North 5th Street
Burlington, IA 52601
First Presbyterian Church
This is the second church built on this site, which replaced the first church built in 1845 at a cost of $4,000. However, the first congregation started worshipping in Burlington in 1836 without a formal building. The current First Presbyterian Church, built in 1886, replaced the original church at a cost of $42,000. The present church can be loosely considered Gothic Revival.
Originally, the yellow limestone was held in place by mortar that was “penciled” black, and the roof was painted black and red. The bold colors were characteristic of the High Victorian Gothic era in which it was built. Unfortunately, a fire devastated the interior and the roof in 1900, but the stained glass windows were saved. They are valued at over one million dollars and were re-leaded in 1997. The exterior colors of the building have been replaced with a more muted palette. The rough cut yellow limestone was quarried in Morning Sun, Iowa.
The large, open tower is 120’ tall and is one of six steeples that can be best viewed from the intersection of 4th Street and Washington. The steeple is also visible as part of the view of the North Hill bluff.