Cathedral Figures

From its height to its cost, figures are one way of measuring up Washington National Cathedral.

  • The Cathedral was completed 83 years to the day after it was begun (September 29, 1907–September 29, 1990).
  • The first tract of land for the Cathedral site (30 acres) was purchased in 1898 for $245,000. Two other parcels of land were purchased later, bringing the total cost to $291,427 and the total area to 57 acres.
  • Washington National Cathedral is the sixth largest cathedral in the world and the second largest in the United States. (The largest Church in the world is St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome. The largest cathedral in the United States is Saint John’s, New York City.)
  • The total cost of building the Cathedral was $65 million, all of which was raised through private donations.
  • The Cathedral weighs 150,000 tons.
  • The average piece of stone weighs 300 pounds.
  • The heaviest stone in the Cathedral is the 5.5-ton boss over the west balcony.
  • There are 762 boss stones in the Cathedral, 640 located on the nave level.
  • 288 angels adorn the two west towers.
  • The north rose window is the Cathedral’s largest stained glass window at 26 feet in diameter.
  • The central tower is 676 feet above sea level, making its top the highest point in the District of Columbia.
  • The largest of the 53 bells of the carillon weighs 24,000 pounds and measures eight feet, eight inches in diameter.
  • There are 112 gargoyles on the Cathedral.
  • There are 215 stained glass windows in the Cathedral.
  • More than 10,500 pieces of stained glass make up the west rose window.
  • There are more than 1,500 separate pieces of needlepoint in the Cathedral.
  • There are 10,650 pipes in the Great Organ.
  • The exterior of the Cathedral is almost the length of two football fields.
  • More than 220 people are interred in the Cathedral, including Woodrow Wilson and Helen Keller.
  • The Cathedral has a staff of about 75, as well as more than 1,100 volunteers.
  • The Cathedral welcomes nearly 700,000 visitors and worshipers annually.

Parking at the Cathedral

Parking in the Cathedral’s underground garage is free on Sundays for services and organ recitals; parking for concerts and programs is available for an event-parking fee. Learn more about parking options for individuals and groups.