Calvary Baptist Church — Washington, DC

Calvary Baptist Church — Washington, DC
Church Calvary
Image by mutrock
The church is the Calvary Baptist Church, and its meeting house, constructed in 1866, was the first major commission for architect Adolf Cluss. Born in Heilbronn, Germany, in 1825, Cluss learned the architectural trade in his native country, where he also met Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels and became involved in the early Communist movement. Cluss appears to have been a pragmatist, eschewing political upheaval and violence but pushing for workers’ rights and democratic reform. After the failure of German reformist rebellions in 1848, Cluss came to America, soon settling in Washington, D.C., where he got a job as a draughtsman at the Navy Yard. For a time he continued to help organize workers and wrote articles on social reform, but eventually he settled into local politics, development, and, of course, architecture.