49. St. Paul's Lutheran Church

Saint Paul’s Lutheran Church is located off Main Street (NYS Rt. 63) on Clara Barton Street (NYS Rt. 36) in the village of Dansville.

Dedicated in 1847, this is one of four churches located in Church Park, not far from the Dansville Area Historical Society Museum. 

The church was listed on the State and National Register of Historic Places in 2013 as architecturally significant representation of late Greek Revival design and also for its association with the village’s German immigrant community.

Perhaps most well-known though is the church’s national significance as the site where in 1881 Clara Barton formed the first local chapter of the American Red Cross. She addressed an audience gathered in the church’s sanctuary about the important work of the international organization and her efforts to have the federal government endorse the 1864 Geneva Convention.

As a result of this meeting, the community endorsed Clara Barton's draft of a constitution for a local chapter and enrolled 57 charter members from the assembled audience. Upon creation of the Dansville chapter, the process for communities to expand the American Red Cross’ services across the country was established.