St. John’s-In-The-Prairie, now known as St. John’s Episcopal Church, is a small Gothic-style church that is believed to have been constructed according to the designs of the prominent New York architect, Richard Upjohn. The church was originally erected nine miles southwest of Greensboro around 1860. In 1870, the building was moved across the Black Warrior River to Forkland, and in 1878-1879 it was re-erected at its current location. Features of the church include pointed arch windows and doorways and a curved roof. The curved roof creates a soaring effect emphasized by the vertical battens and the three windows of the facade. The interior has a ceiling painted in alternating shades of pink and blue. which compliments the Belgian stained glass.
In 1935, the church was documented in the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS). The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) on November 20, 1975. The church is featured in Gifts of Grace, Alabama Churches in Watercolor by Bob Moody.
This church is located beside Greene CR 4 at Forkland, AL approximately 0.2 miles from the intersection of CR 4 and State Highway 43 ( 32°38’57.7″N 87°52’57.6″W – Google Maps).
B&W photographs courtesy of U. S. Library of Congress (HABS), photographer: Alex Bush, date: January 10, 1935.
Sources: 1) NRHP “St. John’s- in- the-Prairie” Nomination Form; 2) The Alabama Catalog, A Guide to the Early Architecture of the State, by Robert Gamble; 3) Gifts of Grace, Alabama Churches in Watercolor by Bob Moody.