Statesman reader Michael Conroy nominated Christ Chapel as a Boise icon.
"When I came to Boise State in 1971, the church was very much part of the community and the site of many a Bronco marriage," said Conroy.
The church dates back to Boise's earliest days. It was the first Episcopal church in the territory that's now Idaho, Utah and Montana. It's the predecessor of St. Michael's Cathedral in Downtown Boise.
The Rev. Saint Michael Fackler arrived in Boise from Virginia in 1864 when the city of Boise was just a year old. His congregants - miners and pioneers -wanted him to stay. He agreed on the condition that they help him build a church.
Fackler raised $2,000 in gold to build the white clapboard Gothic Revival church in 1866. It stood at the corner of 7th and Bannock streets. After Fackler traveled back East and died during a cholera outbreak, the Boise congregation named the church St. Michael's to honor him.
In 1867, the church took on an additional role as community schoolhouse. It kept that role until St. Margaret's school for girls opened in 1892 in a North End building built by the Episcopal church. In 1902, the St. Michael's congregation moved into its cathedral on 8th Street. The little white church, renamed Christ Chapel, was moved to 15th and Ridenbaugh.
St. Margaret's in the meantime, continued to grow. In 1932, the school became co-ed. It changed its name to Boise Junior College and continued to expand into what would become Boise State University.
By the early 1960s, the fate of Christ Chapel was uncertain.
The Boise Junior College board decided it wanted the building. The Idaho Daily Statesman paid $20,000 to restore it and move it to its current home next to Bronco Stadium. Jordan-Wilcomb, the Boise company, handled the moving. Pat Wilcomb, whose husband Dick worked on the project, found an interesting relic in the bell tower: an empty whiskey bottle.
Christ Chapel today is non-denominational. Weddings, christenings and memorial services take place there. Caretakers place the church's original lace, candleholders and cross on the altar before each event.
In 2012, 50 couples were married in Christ Chapel.
Anna Webb: 377-6431