Tiffany Stained Glass
Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848 – 1933)
L.C. Tiffany was a renowned American Art Nouveau stained glass artist whose father, Charles Lewis Tiffany founded the high-end jewelry store Tiffany & Co., one of the country’s foremost retailers of luxury goods. With a taste for the exquisite, Louis Tiffany created some of the world’s most breathtaking interiors and accessories. His company, Tiffany Glass Co., designed the entire interior of Auburn’s own Willard Memorial Chapel, and installed windows at both the Cayuga Museum and Westminster Presbyterian Church.
The Willard Memorial Chapel is an unparalleled example of Tiffany’s work in various mediums. Included in the interior are 14 opalescent windows, a rose window, a large figure window, nine Mooresque-styled chandeliers, memorial tablets of glass mosaic tile and gilt bronze, furnishings of oak inlaid with metal and glass mosaic, a ceiling with gold leaf stencils and mosaic flooring. Built in 1892-1894, the interior of the Chapel was designed and handcrafted entirely by Tiffany Glass Co., and is the only complete and unaltered Tiffany designed religion interior known to exist in the world. The Chapel is on the National Register.
This mansion was the former residence of the prominent Willard-Case family who commissioned Tiffany Glass Co. to create the Willard Memorial Chapel in memory of Dr. Sylvester Willard, a long-time trustee of Auburn Theological Seminary. An original floral motif Tiffany window was installed at the mansion’s east entrance, before the design of the Willard Memorial Chapel, then part of the Seminary.
This church was founded by abolitionists in 1861, and was where Harriet Tubman was married in 1869. Later that same year, the church purchased the present site on William Street from William H. Seward, and laid the cornerstone of the sanctuary. In 1910, a Tiffany window was given in memory of one of the church’s early members, Mrs. Margaret Standart Watson, by her daughter, Mrs. William Seward, the daughter-in-law of the Secretary of State. The window depicts a vibrant rainbow arching over a mountain brook and pond, surrounded by brilliant blue and purple irises. The peaceful scene is illustrative of the 23rd Psalm, “He leadeth me beside the still waters. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures,” which is inscribed, with the dedication, on the rocks of the scene.
Did you know?
The Willard Memorial Chapel in Auburn, designed by Louis C. Tiffany, is the only complete unaltered Tiffany chapel known to exist. The chapel interior showcases fourteen opalescent nave windows, a nine-paneled Rose window, nine Mooresque-styled chandeliers, a large mosaic bronze and gilt tablet, hand-carved furnishings of oak inlaid, a ceiling with gold leaf stencils and extensive mosaic flooring.