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Methodist Episcopal Church, Coleraine, MN

July 25, 2014

MNcoleraine ME

If anyone is going to be in the vicinity of Coleraine, Minnesota in the near future, consider taking some photos of this wonderful example of an A-A church in the northern part of the state. I learned about it through (no surprise here) a postcard view and couldn’t believe that it might still be standing. My postcard is misplaced, but here it one of the few images valuable on the web.

One of Minnesota’s finest practitioners of the Shingle Style was Harry W. Jones, of Minneapolis, and one might reasonably expect him to have done a building like this “outstate”. He did a similar building a few years earlier at Detroit Lakes (a Baptist church long demolished). But the National Register nomination—quoted partially on the plaque in front of the building—credits the design to Frank L. Young, an architect from Duluth whose name was unknown to me. Based on the quality of this building, he’s someone to study in greater detail. The date, by the way, is 1908-1909.

The NR nomination actually calls this building A-A and links that attribution with an accurate description of how the A-A church operated internally. I was in St Paul this week (scanning early issues of The Improvement Bulletin for another project) and found a notice that must be related to construction of the church: it’s called “institutional” and that, too, describes the services this building offered to youth in the rough-and-tumble sort of community that Coleraine may have been during the height of The Range’s boomtown days.

Hope you enjoy it.

For comparison, here’s an image of Harry Jones’s former Baptist church in Detroit Lakes.


UPDATE[05Feb2018]: Found an excellent RPPC view of the Coleraine church which shows the tower still in place.


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