Sacred Heart Church complex, photo submitted 1982
Click above images to enlarge

Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church Complex
1000 Elliot Street and 3481 Rivard, Detroit - Wayne County
Other Names Sacred Heart Church, Convent and Rectory
Property Type religious complex
Historic Use RELIGION
Current Use RELIGION
Style Late Gothic Revival
Architect/Builder Peter Dederichs
Narrative Description The Sacred Heart Church complex is composed of a church, convent, and rectory. The church is a two-story, red brick, pedimented-end-gable-roofed, Italianate bracketed structure with a projecting entrance pavilion capped with a wooden belfry and spire. The building has roundhead fenestration with stone sills, keystones and raised brick surrounds. The walls are articulated with brick pilasters at the corners and between the six-bays of two-story-high nave windows. The seventh bay on each of the sides, which houses the sacristy and service rooms flanking the sanctuary, is projected forward. They are pedimented and utilize two narrow paired windows located above a projecting brick vestibule addition. The cornice is articulated by oversized, paired brackets at each pilaster strip.
Statement of Significance The Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church complex is architecturally significant as a fine Victorian ecclesiastical complex illustrating a variety of architectural styles. The church is an excellent and relatively altered example of Italianate design and is the only Italianate style church in the city. The church complex is historically significant for its associations with Detroit's ethnic history, having originally served a German-American population and later the city's oldest Black Catholic congregation. The church, built in 1875, as one of the earlier designs of German born architect Peter J. Diederichs who later designed a number of houses, commercial blocks and churches for Detroit's large German-American community.
Marker Name Sacred Heart Parish
Marker Text SACRED HEART PARISH Erected in 1875, this building was originally a German Catholic Church. As the social and ethnic composition of the neighborhood changed, so did the membership of the church. Many of the founding German parishioners moved away. Finally in 1938 the first black Catholic congregation in the city of Detroit moved to this edifice. That pioneer congregation, which had begun in 1911 as the St. Peter Claver Church on Eliot and Beaubien streets, still worships here. Affiliated with Sacred Heart Parish are a Sunday School, a choir, several church auxiliary organizations, and numerous social, educational, and cultural functions which serve the people of this community. The church operated a high school until 1957 and an elementary school until 1965. This parish has served Detroit for over one hundred years.
Period of Significance 1866-1900
Significant Date(s) 1875, 1884, 1875
Registry Type(s) 10/25/1978 Marker erected
06/06/1980 National Register listed
06/19/1975 State Register listed
Site ID# P25215