Completed in 1860, it served the needs of the Catholic community for over a century. It was magnificent.
Even in ruin, it is magnificent.
The community was shrinking by the 1970s. Maintenance was put off. Then put off again. The building was sold in 1981, but the new owner allowed the building to be used by the church. The last Mass held in the main church was in 1983. Parts of the building were used until 1994 by various groups.
At the time of the closure in 1994, there was a $2,000,000 estimate for immediate repairs to the roof, the stained glass, and the foundation. In 1996, the church bought the building back and there was a committee comprised of the church, some local preservation groups, and local and state government representatives to try to find a use for the building and raise money to do critical repairs.
It came to nothing.
In danger of collapsing, the city condemned the building in 2001, seized it by eminent domain and emergency repairs to shore up the roof were made. $700,000 were spent to stabilize it and it was considered safe for use in 2007. Ownership moved to the Albany Historic Foundation, then to a non-profit that was supposed to make the church their headquarters and restore the building.
That came to nothing as well.
The treasurer of the group went to jail for financial fraud. Renovations were never done. The building, as of 2013, reverted to government ownership and remains there. It is beyond practical recovery. There is no community to make contributions and no will to do so.
Here's a one minute video of a drone flying up the outside of the main spire. The decay is evident. But it will also give you a sense of the scale of the building.
Now on to the inside.This was made by a couple of urban explorers. Whatever you think of this activity, they do a good job of capturing the church in it's current state.
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven. --Ecc 3:1