Opened in 1821, the Basilica of the Assumption is the oldest Roman Catholic cathedral in the United States. Designed by Benjamin Latrobe, architect of the U.S. Capitol, it stands as a paragon of neoclassicism, with a grand portico fronted by six Corinthian columns that suggest an ancient Greek temple. Two towers are surmounted by baroque domes. The church, including 24 skylights in the dome which were covered over before or prior to World War II, was restored in November,
2006, the bicentennial of the laying of the church’s cornerstone.