Church of the Transfiguration – The Cornerstone

The demolition of the Church of the Transfiguration (Formerly known as Emmanuel Episcopal Church) is nearly complete. Before the demolition crew could complete their task, the crew from WR Restoration, responsible for the deconstruction of the Narthex needed to remove the cornerstone. It was believed that the cornerstone concealed a time capsule, set in place in 1902.

Beginning the Tack of Removing the Cornerstone
Beginning the Tack of Removing the Cornerstone

Experience gained in the deconstruction of the Narthex suggested that the Cornerstone might be six to eight inches thick, with the time capsule set behind it, but as work progressed, it became apparent that this was a massive stone.

Work Slowly Continues to Remove the Cornerstone
Work Slowly Continues to Remove the Cornerstone
An Excavator Helped to Remove the Debris
An Excavator Helps to Remove the Debris

Finally, the stone was free and rigged for removal from the wall.

Carefully Lifting the Cornerstone
Carefully Lifting the Cornerstone

Once the stone was removed from the wall, inspection of the stone’s bottom revealed the location of the time capsule.

IMG_2921_HDRBWEven the frigid wind could not temper the excitement of the crew that had labored for three hours to in single digit temperatures to preserve this piece of history.

Rick Foran, Jim Wamalick, Mallory Haas and stone masons from Local 107 Take a Moment to Celebrate
Rick Foran (Foran Development Group), Jim Wamelink  (WR Restoration), Mallory Haas (Center for Community Studies) and Stone Masons  Take a Moment to Celebrate

The time capsule will be opened, and its contents catalogued in the coming days.

6 thoughts on “Church of the Transfiguration – The Cornerstone”

  1. Can’t wait to see what’s in it!

    Also, please post some more pix of the demo project. I’m interested in the details of the construction, things like steel vs. self-supporting masonry arches, etc.

    Are there any pix of the removal of the organ? And how is the organ restoration coming along in Oberlin?

    1. Hi Jon, and thanks for stopping by. I do have photographs of some of the organ pipes. My primary focus was the deconstruction of the Narthex, so some other aspects of the project were only captured in passing, sorry to say. By clicking on “Church of the Transfiguration” in the list of categories on the right side of the page you can see all of my Blog posts connected with this project. More extensive galleries can be viewed at I will be adding photographs documenting the disposition of many of the artifacts in the near future. Please come back!

  2. Thanks Nick, both for stopping by and for sharing your thoughts. This project has been one of mixed emotions for me. Unlike my normal projects, documenting the renovation, restoration and repurposing of historic buildings, this project documents the demolition of a wonderful historic church. And, as YOU know, it means early mornings in cold temperatures! Stop by again soon!

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