Bells soon will be ringing in tandem. After 113 years as a social and religious center for Park City, the old chapel of St. Mary's Catholic Church will enter semi-retirement. Its replacement is a beautiful new chapel at Highway 224 and White Pine Canyon Road.
In 1881, the 1st Street Mary's, a modest wood frame structure housing a chapel and school, was built on the Park Avenue site. After the church was destroyed by fire in 1884, these familiar 2 buildings constructed of native rock replaced it. School classes were held on the building grounds until it closed in 1933 because of declining enrollment
In January 1950, another fire gutted the chapel but spared the school building. Through the persistent efforts of parishioners it was rebuilt and dedicated in June 1950. In 1970, St. Mary's was nominated to the Register of Utah Historical and Cultural Sites as the longest continuously operating Catholic Church in Utah. Old St. Mary's will continue to hold an 8 a.m. Mass, weddings and other special events, and will be open daily to visitors.
By Hal Compton, Research historian, P.C. Museum Located at 115 Park Avenue. View the map.