St. Andrew Catholic Church

St. Andrew Catholic Church was located in the Avondale neighborhood of Cincinnati, Ohio, and was in operation from 1875 until its merger in 2010.

St. Andrew Catholic Church was located in the Avondale neighborhood of Cincinnati, Ohio, and was in operation from 1875 until its merger in 2010.

The parish was organized in 1874 by Irish Catholics who had acquired a lot on Prospect Place. The cornerstone for a Gothic Revival-styled building was laid on September 20 with the new building dedicated in April 1875. The structure was enlarged in 1894 but with Avondale developing into an upscale community dominated by large estates and suburban housing, a larger church was needed.

In 1917, ground was broken for a new facility designed by Samuel Hannaford & Sons, which was completed in 1920.

It featured a vaulted ceiling, extensive stained glass panels and a statue of St. Andrew above the front door above the apex. The statue was ordered in 1919 by Frank Herschede from Italy although it received disapproval from the parish priest, Father David O’Meara, due to its smaller size. It was crated and stored in the warehouse of the Herschede Hall Clock Company. But because the statue held a St. Andrew’s Cross, it was difficult to sell the statue and was uncrated, blessed and installed on the lawn of the church in 1939. It was later moved inside.

In 1925, a sizable two-story school was completed behind the church.

But Avondale’s demographics changed for the worse during the mid-20th century. In the 1940’s, black professional and middle-class homeowners moved to the neighborhood by choice from an overcrowded West End, lured by large homes and lots and a vibrant business district. In the 1950’s, African-American planners in the neighborhood convinced the city to force thousands of low-income families to relocate from the West End as part of urban redevelopment projects in the West End that eventually led to the construction of Interstate 75 and the Queensgate industrial park. This led to the first wave of substantial population decline in Avondale, but the riots in 1967 and 1968, prompted by civil unrest, spurred the rapid decline of the neighborhood. St. Andrew’s was not spared damage and stained glass was broken during the melee, while businesses and residences nearby were set ablaze.

Below: Note the broken stained glass that was never repaired.

St. Andrew’s school closed in 1965 due to declining enrollment and students were sent to St. George School in Corryville, which was renamed Corryville Catholic.

On July 14, 2010, a decree by Cincinnati Archbishop Dennis Schnurr formed the Church of the Resurrection, which combined St. Agnes in Bond Hill, St. Martin de Porres in Lincoln Heights and St. Andrew in Avondale into the St. Agnes location. The newly combined congregation contained 550 worshipers. Four days after the formation, St. Andrew held its last service after 136 years.

Leave your comment!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Discover more from Abandoned

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading