Monday, 30 December 2013

Then & Now: The ugliest church in all Christendom!

Lang Park is a triangular handkerchief of land on the rise up from George Street to the ridge that goes over the bridge. It is inconsequential, sans meaning, sans beauty. But it resounds with history.
With the second image, I tried to recreate the first, which allegedly was sketched in 1817. St Phillips stood in the centre of what is now Lang Park, but which in the first half of the 19th century was known as "Church Hill". There were churches all around, eventually, but not initially. This was he only church in colonial Sydney until the construction of St James on Macquarie Street. Indeed, the colony was divided into two parishes, St Phillip's Sydney and St John's Parramatta, both presided over by the Reverend Samuel Marsden.
This was the second St Phillip's, the first was burnt down in 1798 - deliberately, I gather. This one on Church Hill had a sod turned in 1798, but was not "open for business" until toward the end of 1800. It was built of shoddy materials to a shoddier design, by shoddy workmen, and was replaced in 1856 by another building about where that windmill is (now we would say "on York Street").


Joe said...

Time delivers such amazing contrasts Julie. Wishing you a very happy New Year.

Julie said...

For mw, in situations like this, Joe, time delivers sadness.

Many thanks for the good wishes. I hope 2014 brings contentment to you and yours.

Kay L. Davies said...

I think that street corner looks better now than then, Julie.
Thinking of you and wishing you well always, but I know "if wishes were horses..."
Your friendship has meant a great deal to me, and I'm very sorry we haven't been able to get to Australia to see you.
Love and a gentle hug,

Joan Elizabeth said...

Happy new year Julie. Sorry I have been flat out for weeks and weeks so not blogging or visiting. Hopefully I can pop in more often now. I am so glad you are blogging again.

Merisi said...

Food for thought. What resources were had back then, who decided to build a church anyway, to have a place to come together. Safely so, one hopes, seeing how even nowadays places of worship and worshippers are under attack.

The trees are a comforting sight, and knowing the people living and walking in their shade are safe, too.

A very Happy New Year to you and yours,

diane b said...

Thanks for the interesting history lesson.