Views of the Neighborhood

Today’s view of the neighborhood is the Chapel in the Dunes. On top of the highest dune in Port Aransas sits a tiny chapel. It was built in 1937 by Aline Carter who later became the Poet Laureate of Texas. It was in this chapel that Ms. Carter gave Bible lessons to the children of Port Aransas.

In the 1970’s Texas Artist John Cobb was inspired by Ms. Carter’s memory to paint the walls and ceiling of the chapel. His artistry along classic lines of the ancient biblical painters took over three years to finish.

So come with me on a tour.

We start with a long climb to the top of the dune

stairs to the Chapel

We see the chapel at the top


The woman to the right will give you an idea of the size of the chapel. Very tiny.


Inside there are several pews, and you can begin to see the result of John Cobb’s work. The altar in the center of scenesย depicting the multiple religions of the world. You can also see that the floors made of pieces of granite cut in the Texas hill country and shipped to Port Aransas. The altar is solid marble.



As you enter the Chapel facing the altar the walls on the left depict scenes from the Old Testament of the Bible and the right from the new.

Here is a sample of the left wall showing Adam and Eve and other stories.


Here is the right. Although hard to see, New Testament events such as the coming of Christ are recreated.


Here is a shot of the back wall. ย This is a summary of faith with Christ (in the center above the door) holding the keys to heaven (left) and hell (right).



The final shot is a thank you to our Docent Laura Davis for taking us on the tour.





  1. Heartafire · ·

    Charming and intriguing. If walls could talk!

    1. So true. The quiet of the sanctuary is most inspiring. I couldn’t get a good picture but the Gulf is visible between the houses. When the chapel was built there were no buildings and it had a 360 degree view of the Gulf and bay. It must have been stunning.

  2. A lot of detailed work there, John. It speaks well to the commitment and faith shown by both Aline Carter and John Cobb.

    1. They were very special people. John Cobb felt that the chapel was his opportunity to work out some problems and renew his relationship with God.

  3. Gwen Plano · ·

    What an incredible little chapel! Oh the stories it must hold! I’m captivated…but then, I love chapels — and visit them whenever or wherever I travel. Thank you for sharing this…

    1. Thank you , Gwen. It is quite something to see. ๐Ÿ™‚ Happy week to you.

  4. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    As well as an image of John Howell’s part of the world on the Texas coast, a look back at the history of a tiny chapel that is beautifully decorated.

    1. Thank you , Sally. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. What a lovely place and the murals are just stunning ๐Ÿ˜€

    1. When you think of the fact that the murals are over 30 years old it is amazing they can still be seen. ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Very quaint. Was surprised to see how small it was.

    1. It is smaller in person. The photos make it look bigger. (equivalent to human 15 pounds)

      1. Wow. How many people can fit in there?

      2. Three abreast so I would say no more than 18

  7. Lovely little chapel, John. It’s all the more charming due to the faith that inspired the building and decorating. Thanks for the tour. ๐Ÿ™‚ — Suzanne

    1. Thank you, Suzanne. It is true about faith. ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. What a beautiful chapel. I love the colors and the stained glass. Thanks for the tour, John. Have a great Sunday!

    1. Thanks for going along, Jill. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Thanks for sharing this lovely, little chapel. It reminds me of the teeny family chapels found on rural properties in the province of Quebec – built for private family prayer. Nice photography, John!

    1. Thanks, John. When the chapel was built there was not an organized church building on the island. ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. I see. There’s much to be said for the absence of organized religion. Pardon my heresy!๐Ÿ˜‡

      2. Ha ha ha. Look out for that lightning bolt.:-)

  10. Just beautiful, John!! Had to re-blog.

    1. Thank you so much, Jan. It is quite an honor to be on your beautiful site. ๐Ÿ™‚

  11. Fantastic little slice of art and history John. Thanks for the great photos and virtual tour.

    1. My pleasure. Thanks for coming along.

  12. It’s a charming little place John. (And that’s a whole lot of stairs…)
    I guess the holiday hoards have taken over your beach this weekend. Hope all goes well. Mega hugs.

    1. Yes they are all here. I venture out infrequently. Happy Labor Day, Teagan. I assume it is a Gov day off. ๐Ÿ™‚

      1. Thanks, John — the same to you. Yes, I have to give up my only telework day of the week, but at least I’m off. “Praise the company!” LOL — I’m suddenly reminded of a vintage Doctor Who episode on a planet ruled by a corporation. Every time a character mentioned the company they added “Praise the company!” I couldn’t find the best clip, but here’s one — hopefully without any political adds attached. More hugs.

      2. I could not find the clip. The url opens into a whole host of different things. I like that “Praise the Company idea.” When I’m king mention my book “Praise His Revenge.”

  13. It’s interesting how much larger buildings have gotten over the years. Everything used to be no larger than it needed to be. Homes, churches, offices, everything seems to have grown over time.

    1. Including the size of the Super size.

  14. Thakns for sharing this, John. It’s a beautiful little chapel and the painting inside is wonderful.

    1. It i quite something. My photos did not do it justice.

      1. I like finding little chapels likd that. That’s in a beautiful location.

      2. It is very peaceful. Happy day tomorrow

  15. I recently had the opportunity to visit a very old church in a village in Italy and there are frescos from long ago still on the walls and the ceiling. This church and it artistry reminds me of what I saw. It is amazing how artists in those days had no problems with painting their visions of what faith meant. Very positive visions that inspired and encouraged.
    Thank you for sharing.
    Shalom aleichem,

    1. The rest was inspired by the ancient works. He made his own gesso and glue. aleichem Shalom.

  16. Carol Van Dyne · ·

    I never knew of this…I live in Rockport, TX and my brother works for the City of Port Aransas…he may know of it. Can you tell me were it is exactly? At first I thought this was the Chapel in Conn Brown Harbor.

    1. The chapel is located at 207 11th street. The museum offers a tour on the first Saturday of the month. The stairs are hard to find without a docent. Once you get up there the chapel is locked except for the first Saturday. Hope this helps.

  17. Cool! Who would have expected something this tiny to contain so much?!

    1. I know right? I was very surprised. Thanks, Debbie. ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. Thanks for the tour! I have seen it from a distance but never stopped to check it out.

    1. Well hopefully this gave you an idea.

  19. Thanks for the Sunday tour, John! Lovely little chapel, So colorful and peaceful! ๐Ÿ’›Elizabeth

    1. Yes. You can almost hear the gulf from that dune.

  20. This is fascinating. Love the murals. Wish there was a love button.

    1. Your words just acted like one. (I would rather have the words) Thanks Susan

  21. A beautiful little chapel. The artwork inside is stunning. Thanks for the tour.

    1. You are welcome, Michelle. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

  22. Such a charming chapel – art work is incredibly detailed. Hope you had a great Labor Day weekend!

    1. Thank you, Teri. I hope you got to relax. I had a great one.

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