Guided tours of Saint Joseph Cathedral’s majestic interior, undercroft and crypt are available on weekdays and Sunday afternoons by appointment. Learn more about the history and treasures of the Cathedral. Tours are provided for any size group from 1-2 people or a large group of 50+ (elevator available, accessible from the outside door on the west side). Teachers, this would be a great outing for your students!


  • One of the chief architects was Civil War General William S. Rosencrans, brother of the first Bishop of Columbus.
  • The Cathedral has no cornerstone. In 1868 when construction took a turn from building the St. Joseph Church (begun in 1866) to Saint Joseph Cathedral, the cornerstone was lost, destroyed or sealed within the building’s 3-foot thick walls.
  • Architecture is High French Gothic
  • When the first Mass was said in the Cathedral on December 25, 1872 on a makeshift wooden altar, one of the young altar servers was James Hartley, who later became the fourth Bishop of Columbus.
  • The first wedding was celebrated at the Cathedral February 25, 1873 for John Mangan and Annie Clifford.
  • The Cathedral bell was ordered by Bishop Watterson on October 17, 1882.
  • The 1914 marble pulpit had the image of St. Francis de Sales that is now located in the narthex.
  • There are two Bishops entombed in the Cathedral’s undercroft crypt.  Find out who they are….
  • The St. Joseph Cathedral website has a full history of the construction and modification of the Cathedral over the last 145 years. Check out our history

To plan your guided tour, please contact Michael Elton at or (614) 405-7770.

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