Discovering Great Mormon Buildings

Garden Park Ward Chapel Interior

This is the only LDS chapel I am familiar with that does not have pews for the congregation. These beautiful theater-type seats appear to be original to the building. The St George Tabernacle also has individual seating, but I’m not counting that since it’s a Tabernacle. I am unsure of who the original architect of the building was, but the extensive remodel done in 2008 was exquisitely done by the local Salt Lake firm of CRSA.

1150 E Yale Ave
Salt Lake City, UT
Built 1939; Remodeled 2008
Original architect unknown; CRSA architect of remodel
Map Location of Building

16 responses

  1. seshat

    Huh. There’s a flag at the front of the chapel. I’ve seen plenty of flags outside LDS buildings, but never one that I remember inside, at the front of the chapel. Have you ever noticed one before? Seems sorta weird and secular to me, not quite what you’d expect for a sacred space–if you think LDS chapels are sacred, that is. I mean, imagine a flag inside the temple…. Or have flags begun appearing inside temples and I’ve just missed it, since I don’t go anymore?

    November 18, 2011 at 7:36 pm

    • I recall seeing a US flag in a chapel before, but am coming up blank as to which chapel. It may have been in older photos of chapels, though, rather than recently. In older photos, many chapels would also have pictures of Joseph Smith and whoever the current prophet was at the time up at the front as well. No flags in temples, though, that I am aware of.

      November 23, 2011 at 6:18 am

  2. Bill West

    Just to clarify, only the balcony of the St. George Tabernacle has the “theater-type” seats. The main floor is benches.

    November 18, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    • Great point, Bill – thanks for the clarification.

      November 23, 2011 at 6:19 am

  3. I love this chapel — I used to live relatively close to it and frequently passed it while running errands.

    November 21, 2011 at 4:45 am

  4. Th.


    Do you know anything about the paintings?

    November 21, 2011 at 10:35 am

    • No details yet about how they ended up here, but they are two of four original Minerva Teichert paintings in the building. I am unsure if they were commissioned for the building or simply acquired and placed here. I also don’t know yet if they are original to the building. As for the other two, one is well-placed in the lobby and the other is in the entry, which now acts as the main entry, but is actually the entry at the back of the building.

      November 23, 2011 at 6:22 am

      • i live in the same stake as the Garden Park Ward. The Minerva Teichert paintings were gifted to the stake by Creed Haymond who lived in my ward, the Yalecrest ward. He was Minerva’s dentist. The Teichert family could not afford dental care and Dr. Haymond accepted the paintings as payment for work done instead of cash over the years. His daughter wrote a history of the paintings (there were several more donated to other stake buildings) including the large one in my home ward, donated to the stake by her father for my husband who was the Ward bishop. Hier husband still lives in the Haymond family home. The other historical paintings in the Garden Park building were acquired with church funds by Florence Horne, who was a patron of the arts and facilitated placing local artists work in LDS church buildings.

        June 25, 2015 at 11:12 pm

  5. Dustin

    Wow.. I’ve never seen paintings inside a chapel before. What a lovely idea!

    November 22, 2011 at 9:06 pm

    • seshat

      there are many, many chapels full of paintings–the Sistine chapel, for instance. It IS a lovely idea, but one that has struck many Mormons as papist or somehow sinister. Mormons are the heirs of puritans, the people who burned, painted over and other wise destroyed every bit of decoration and color in Christian churches, preferring simplicity and unadorned white walls. The featureless utilitarian buildings we have now are a return to Mormonsim’s true aesthetic roots, not a departure from them.

      November 23, 2011 at 6:32 am

  6. KevinL

    There was individual theater-style seating in the old Holladay 3rd Ward building (on Chapel Street; torn down in the 80’s and rebuilt) which was originally called the Mt. Olympus Ward. It was built in the 30’s by the members and had handmade adobe bricks.

    December 16, 2012 at 2:40 pm

  7. John Manning

    I was born in 1958 and grew up in the Ward. The paintings in the Chapel were there the entire time I lived in the Ward. Great memories.

    May 2, 2013 at 10:53 am

    • Bruce Lake

      I am looking for some history of the carriage house or scout house on the property of the Garden Park Ward. Do you know anything about this building? When it was built? When was it used for the boy scouts in the ward? What is it’s current use? etc?

      December 12, 2013 at 10:19 am

      • The property and outbuildings including the carriage house and old swimming pool on the Garden Park grounds were part of the original estate that the church building was later built on. An LDS church member left her home and estate to the LDS church upon her death. The original home was demolished and the church building was built on its site but the carriage house and pool house and grottos are original and date to the time of the original estate. carriages and later automobiles were housed in the outbuilding.I’m not sure when the scouts started to use it but it is now used for scout meetings, Young women and men’s, And is used as a caterers kitchen for the wedding receptions of stake members that are held on the church grounds.

        June 25, 2015 at 11:21 pm

  8. Sonja Davis

    Wikipedia list this building as work by Taylor Woolley, Architect. Is that correct?

    February 4, 2014 at 7:12 pm

    • Peter Goss, an architectural historian is currently writing a book on Taylor Wooley. He may be able to answer that question

      June 25, 2015 at 11:22 pm

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