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Elm Park Methodist Episcopal Church, Scranton, PA

March 30, 2016

How have I managed to write about so very many Akron-Auditorium churches and avoid posting something on Elm Park M.E. in Scranton, PA. This building might very well be the poster child for the A-A phenomenon. It came to mind today when I discovered this wonderful interior—similar to several others, with the exception that it includes far more of the Sunday School seating in the foreground.

PAscrantonME

Elm Park M.E. had a difficult birth. Ground was broken in the fall of 1891 and dedicatory services were prepared for December the following year. Just a week before, however, fire costumed the building. Rebuilt from the original plans by Messrs. Weary & Kramer, the church was again nearly complete, when a second major fire destroyed the building. It was ultimately dedicated in late 1893 and enlarged considerably during its first few decades. I visited Scranton and only walked around this building a couple years ago with my friend Richard Kenyon, but we didn’t try to see the interior. today I regret that because it seems to be in remarkable condition, well maintained and intact from the exterior.

ElmPark_ME_Church

The design comes from George Washington Kramer, whose output of A-A churches was prolific. Plans for the original portion of Elm Park are below. It has been considerably enlarged, however, into what must be a true “institutional church.”

scranton plan

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