" So many times when we go into churches we're there for a funeral or for a wedding and we really don't get to see the stained glass, but they ' re kind of a hidden treasure ," Stained glass photographer Barbara Kenn explains.
T he stained glass windows that John and Barbara Kenn call a hidden treasure can be found in more than 40 churches across Chippewa County. As a team they photograph each church's windows and record the history behind the glass art. An art form that the Kenns believe is fading away
"I t's a very expensive thing and most generally the churches when they rebuild or the build don't have the place for them or they just want to go with plain glass now ," Barbara Kenn said.
T he First United Presbyterian Church in Sault Ste. Marie burned down 12 years ago and all the stained glass windows were lost. That is exactly why the Kenns say its important to photograph the history before it goes away.
" Most of the older churches here in town have done the same thing now, because all of the sudden they found that once a fire happens, that's the end of it ," John Kenn explains.
Monday night they are celebrating the historic churches of Chippewa County with a presentation of the pictures they collected where the pictures and history will be on display. You might also catch their photos in a website launched by Michigan State University to showcase the state's stained glass windows and their history.