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Reflected Ceiling Plan - Gesu Catholic Church, 118 Northeast Second Street, Miami, Miami-Dade County, FL
Florida; Miami-Dade County; Miami
34 x 44 in. (E size)
St. John Construction Company, Builder; Williams, Orin T., Architect; Lopez, Ricardo, faculty sponsor; Cohen, Matthew, delineator; Madureira, Carolina, delineator; Ragusa, Ariana, delineator; Kollar, Brendan, delineator; Lal, Shefali, delineator; Margarita, Ariana, delineator; McGee, Sarah, delineator; Varghese, Simi, delineator; Vela, Jose, III, delineator; Veliz, Fancela, delineator; Wine, Mara, delineator
This file comes from the
Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS), Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) or Historic American Landscapes Survey (HALS). These are programs of the National Park Service established for the purpose of documenting historic places. Records consist of measured drawings, archival photographs, and written reports.
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2013 Charles E. Peterson Prize, Honorable Mention
Significance: Gesu Catholic Church was founded as a church in 1896, just months before the City of Miami was incorporated. Its complete name, The Holy Name of Jesus Catholic Church, we Italianized simply to Gesu, which translates to Jesus. It is tended to by the Roman Catholic order known as the Jesuits, the Society of Jesus, whose emblem containing the abbreviation -I.H.S.- is found in cast ironwork throughout the building. The Mother Church of the Society of Jesus, also named Gesu, was built in 1580 in Rome on the spot where Saint Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the order, had once prayed before an image of the Holy Virgin. That church, originally designed by Giacomo Barozzi da Vignola and later revised by Giacomo della Porta, ushered in the Baroque style to architecture, and served as a model for countless Jesuit church around the world, particularly in the Americas.
In the 1920s, Miami was booming and the downtown was transforming from a town of wood framed office buildings and small buildings to one of steel framed office buildings that would give shape to the city's recent style.
Gesu Church is a rectangular steel frame building on the corner of an urban block. with a large portico and central tower. The structural floor is reinforced concrete finished with terazzo while the walls incorporate terra cotta blocks with a stucco finish on the exterior and framed plaster on the interior. It has a basement half a level down from the sidewalk and the main floor is half a level up, accessed by stairs to the portico which are pressed up against the corner. Like the Gesu in Rome, there is no narthex and there are no aisles. Thanks to the wide span of the steel truss roof, there are no interior columns to interfere with one's attention being drawn to the altar, where the ceremony of the mass is focused...
Survey number: HABS FL-584
Building/structure dates: 1925 Initial Construction