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A Caution

March 29, 2017

Not every auxiliary adjacent space — one or more that can be joined with others, especially the auditorium, by means of movable partitions — is necessarily an “Akron” plan. To be truly “Akron”, the Sunday school would, I suppose, have operated on that educational model. The simple presence of spatial flexibility doesn’t mean an A-A church is confirmed. How these auxiliary spaces were used isn’t often very clear, such as the German Methodist Episcopal church in Charles City, Iowa:

That frame at the far left of the cased opening is tantalizingly door-like, though it is no confirmation that the space beyond could be closed off from the auditorium. The typology is use here has its shortcomings; this is certainly one of them.

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One Comment
  1. Your point is well taken. The fully developed A-A plan church of my youth, First Presbyterian Lebanon Tennessee has, in addition to the Sunday School assembly area with vast roll-up door between it and the sanctuary, also includes an ancillary, 1-story area similar to that pictured above which was used as an additional Sunday School room on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights. The minimal acoustic separation allowed a class to be held while the choir warmed up only a few feet away.

    The manufacturer of roll-up doors and hardware at the beginning of the 20th century must have been a seriously lucrative business.

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