July 31, 2022

Masonic Lodge and Church

Herndon, Virginia

When I pulled over and took a picture of this building on Elden Street, I was not able to read the sign on the door but it looked like a historic building plaque. I was able to find its identification on the Herndon Historical Society page, which says it was a Masonic Lodge and before that, St.Timothy’s Episcopal Church, built in 1881. The Historical Society published details about the construction of the church.

“The overall design of St. Timothy’s Church is called Warden’s Gothic or Carpenter’s Gothic, drawn by people without benefit of an architect. The names of the building committee and the carpenters are unknown. The Virginia pine, 7/8’ thick German siding, 8 penny nails and other building materials were likely furnished by a lumber company, owned by Mr. Laonhardt, an influential man of the church parish, located on Station Street across from the Depot. The construction plan indicated that the main sills were made of white oak. The floor supports were oak, with 1 ¼ inch thick Virginia pine on top, boards no wider than 6 inches. The rest of the frame was Virginia pine. Belfry posts were 6-inch square, except the top section which were 5-inch square. The entire building was covered in cypress shingles. The pews were made of white pine, except the pew caps and alter railings which were made of Carolina pine or ash, finished in oil. The front doors were 2 inches thick, heavily molded on the outside, with bead and butt on the inside, secured with two flush bolts and a six inch mortice lock. All other doors were 1 3/8 inches thick with six panels. The window frames were sash, double hung with weights and pulleys. The windows were No 1 American clear glass, beded and back puttied. One or two chimneys were planned. All the walls and ceilings were plastered. The entire building had two coats of paint, inside and out. No mention was made of the fish-scale shingles on the upper part of the belfry. It is possible that those shingles were added in the 1890’s when the steeple was renovated. The church was consecrated in April of 1881.

A large stain glass window, approximately 14 feet high, was installed behind the alter table in about 1900 in memory of an early church benefactor, John Day. It could be seen until the church’s interior remodeled in 1949, at which time it was boarded up, presumably due to structural weakness. The side windows were refitted in 1954. The original clear panes were replaced with opaque ones, with mullions set in diamond patterns and ecclesiastical symbols in stain glass along the top arches, purchased by memorial funds. The church as originally constructed had a steeple rather than a bell tower, the bell being too heavy for the steeple. The present bell tower was built in about 1893 or 1894. The belfry housed a McShane bell. It was removed from the belfry in 1981 and can now be seen at the new St. Timothy’s Church on Van Buren Street.”


  1. Interesting!
    Have a blessed day!

  2. Beautiful church! Take care, have a great day and happy week ahead.

  3. ...I think of Carpenter’s Gothic as having vertical board and batten siding.

  4. That is a rather nice gothic stile church

  5. Wonderful description of the construction, and changes made to that classic church!

  6. It is such a nice building. Thank you for including its history.

  7. a very beautiful image...how nice that you found so much information about it!!


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