The Chapel has been rededicated on May 23, 2004 as St Mary's Chapel in
keeping with the Anglican tradition.
In spite of the modesty of their plan. The founders of Ascension were
lavish in their decoration and furnishing of the interior of the Church.
In the course of rehabilitation. An elaborate border and wall paintings
in the chancel area were revealed when the wallpaper was removed. The
ceiling overlying the chancel was originally painted blue with interspersed
gold stars. Kathy Mailande, a local artist, has restored the border and
paintings using the original colors. As shown in the early photograph
appearing with the old pictures of the chapel. An elaborate rood screen
originally separated the chancel and nave areas of the Church. The upper
part of this screen was removed in the early 1950's. Gary Hand. A Salida
furniture maker, has replicated the missing upper section and has done
a marvelous job of wedding it to the original lower section. In addition,
he has repaired and refinished the original altar, altar rail and other
chancel furnishings, which are quite ornate, based on the frontier standards
of that time and place. The chandeliers now in place over the center aisle
are replicas of the original fixtures appearing in the old picture . The
pews have been restored to their original unpainted condition. The six
stained glass windows in the north and south walls, which date back to
the late 1800's, were reconditioned by Barbara Abel, a member of our congregation.
The large stained glass window in the west wall of the chapel was donated
by the Rio Grande Hospital in the early 1950's
If the founders of Ascension were in our congregation today, they would
feel very much at home. Except for the modern heating and electrical systems,
the building is essentially unchanged from 117 years ago.
We wish to express our thanks to the Colorado State Historical Fund
for their generous grant which helped to make this rehabilitation project