An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church

Cram, Ralph Adams

(Dec. 16, 1863-Sept. 22, 1942). Church architect. He was born in Hampton Falls, New Hampshire. After completing high school in 1880, he studied for five years in an architectural firm in Boston. Although he abandoned architecture for a time, he returned to that profession in 1890 and formed a partnership with Charles Francis Wentworth. Cram's firm (later known as Cram, Goodhue and Ferguson) soon began to specialize in the design of churches. Cram identified himself at this time with the Anglo-catholic party of the Episcopal Church. His interest in medievalism and religious ritual inspired his efforts to make gothic the preeminent style for the construction of American church buildings in his day. Among Cram's most famous designs are the Cathedral of St. John the Divine and St. Thomas Church in New York City, and the chapel of the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Cram was also instrumental in the founding of the Medieval Academy of America in 1925. He died in Boston.

Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from “An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians,” Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.