This week, the Archivist's Mailbag uncovers the truth behind some other common myths about Trinity Church. Today, we tackle Myth #2: The chandeliers in St. Paul's Chapel are Waterford crystal.
There is no record of the chandeliers in St. Paul’s being made by the venerable Irish glass crystal company. A recent appraisal found that the chandeliers exhibit Dutch workmanship— which makes sense in the context of New York’s history.
The Archivist does know that they were purchased in 1802 and originally held candles. In 1856, St. Paul’s Chapel was converted to gaslight and the chandeliers were given to upstate churches. The chandeliers were purchased back from these churches during a building restora- tion in 1913, wired for electricity, and returned to use in St. Paul’s Chapel.
During WWII the chandeliers were removed and put into storage due to the danger of possible air raids.