authoritative source on
early churches of New Jersey
We've created a database and photographic inventory on more than half
the 18th & 19th century churches in the state and add to it each month.
We welcome and solicit all contributions and suggestions from our visitors.
to use this site
Respond to readers' queries
Consult the database
Annotate the database
Upload a photo
Suggest a church for inclusion
List of churches, by county
Links to related sites
St. Peter's [Episcopal] Church
Spotswood, Middlesex County
St. Peter's was designed by Richard Upjohn, who also designed Grace
Church in Newark and St. Mary's in Burlington. His real innovations
came in adapting Gothic elements to wooden churches, as he did in this
outstanding building, erected in 1849. It is one of the earliest uses
of the board-and-batten style for churches in the country, preceeded
only, to the best of my knowledge, by a Congregational church in Brunswick,
Maine, designed by Upjohn and built in 1845-46.
The National Register credits Frank Wills
and C.K. Pursell with the design and construction of the building; while
I am loathe to take exception to the research that underlines that registration,
other experts credit Upjohn, and I am inclined to agree with them. Wills
designed a timber church, rather similar in style to this one, for an
Episcopal congregation in Albany, NY in 1850 (demolished in 1951), so
in the absence of other evidence, We should consider the matter unsettled.