Historic 17th Century English Church
During the Great Fire of London in 1666, the church burnt to the ground. Christopher Wren, a famous English architect, redesigned and rebuilt the Church of St. Mary. In 1940 during the Blitz, the Church was gutted after a German incendiary bombstruck the center of the roof. For 25 years after the attack, the Church sat roofless and moss-grown, slated for demolition.
It was in the early 1960's that the proposal was made for the creation of a museum to Sir Winston Churchill and his famous "Iron Curtain" speech, which he delivered at Westminster College in 1946. In 1965, the Church was dismantled in London and shipped, 7,000 stones in all, to Westminster College, where it was reassembled and restored to the condition we see today. It serves as the ecumenical, inter-denominational chapel for the college.
In the 17th century, the church was recognized as the social and religious center for a number of England's major figures including John Milton and William Shakespeare.