First Baptist Church (56)


510 Main Street

This building, Neoclassical style in the Octagonal Mode, was built in 1924 to house a large congregation that had outgrown its former location on Gay Street. It was designed by the architectural firm Dougherty & Garner of Nashville, selected in a juried competition, and constructed by Worsham Brothers of Knoxville.

Ground was broken in 1923, and the entire project cost $600,000 and required more than 150 workers. It was estimated that approximately 2,000 freight cars were needed to transport all the materials used in the construction. The structural steel framing provides support for the dome of the main auditorium, which seats approximately 1,200 people. The auditorium features elaborate marble and wooden panels, with woodwork grained to resemble walnut and applied over Mississippi gum. The entry vestibule is finished in buff, light blue, and purple, with a domed ceiling.

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