In the fall of 1937, Sibyl and Douglas Sloane III purchased the property in Rindge, NH that was later to become the Cathedral of the Pines. Settling on what was then 128 acres, they envisioned that their four children—Douglas, Sanderson (“Sandy”), Margaret, and John (“Jack”)—would one day build their own houses on the property.
In 1938 a hurricane ripped through the region. The five-acre piece of land that Sandy had selected for his future home was particularly hard hit, and it was months before the Sloane’s went to assess the damage. When they finally did, they were awestruck at the sight. The storm had knocked down many of the pine trees, revealing a stunning panoramic view of Grand Monadnock Mountain, with other mountain ranges in the distance.
After the US entered World War II, Jack and Sandy both joined the armed forces and served in the Army Air Corps. Jack survived his many missions on a B-26 bomber, while Sandy had almost flown enough missions on a B-17 bomber to entitle him to home leave.
Sadly, Sanderson Sloane never made it home. He lost his life when his plane was shot down over Germany in 1944.
In August 1945 the Sloane family planned a memorial service for their beloved son and brother in the clearing with its spectacular view of Mount Monadnock… the special place where Sandy had planned to build a home for his wife and newborn son. People from throughout the community came to the service to pay their respects to a fallen local hero and thus began the story of the Cathedral of the Pines.
In the following years, the Sloane’s welcomed all faiths at the Cathedral of the Pines in the hopes of fostering understanding and tolerance that would ultimately lead to peace. The memorials they built honor their son Sandy and all who have served this great Nation.
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