Become a Docent

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Docents gather around the grave of Howard Van Doren Shaw during a docent enrichment walking tour of Graceland Cemetery led by William Tyre. †

Share your love of art and architecture by becoming a docent at the Second Presbyterian Church today! It is Chicago’s only National Historic Landmark church recognized for its significant Arts and Crafts interior created by architect Howard Van Doren Shaw. Find his artistry highlighted by the plaster and wood ornamentation and original art glass lighting throughout the building. The church showcases its wealth of art through the Pre-Raphaelite murals of Frederic Clay Bartlett and the windows by the firms of Louis Comfort Tiffany and others. We invite you to revel in the beauty and become mesmerized by the history of the art and architecture of Second Presbyterian Church.

Tours of the stunning art and architecture of Second Presbyterian Church are vital to the mission of Friends of Historic Second Church to educate a worldwide audience about its historical and cultural significance. The backbone of the tour program is the well-informed corps of docents who graciously share their time and knowledge with thousands of tour guests.

Friends holds docent training every year over four sessions. A partial list of topics includes the Arts and Crafts movement, the stained glass windows (both American and English), the murals, Gothic revival architecture, architects James Renwick and Howard Van Doren Shaw, artists Frederic Clay Bartlett and Louis Comfort Tiffany, and preservation philosophy and techniques. Trainees will also learn about and see the preservation progress already accomplished at the church.

Docent training will occur at Second Presbyterian Church of Chicago, 1936 S. Michigan Avenue. If you have questions, please email historic2ndchurch@yahoo.com, or call 1-800-657-0687.

Docent Training is done for this year, 2017. Check back next spring for Docent Training 2018.

*All photos by Martin Cheung unless otherwise noted
*Interior sanctuary photo by James Caulfield

†Photos by Friends of Historic Second Church