The Church of the Unity, photographed in 1959. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress, Historic American Buildings Survey collection.
The same view in 2014:
The Church of the Unity is also featured in this post, although the photo in that one is close to 100 years older than this “before” one is. As mentioned there, this church was significant as the first commission of architect Henry Hobson Richardson, and was built between 1866 and 1869. However, it was demolished only two years after this photo was taken, and was replaced with a parking lot for the Springfield Public Library.
4 thoughts on “Church of the Unity, Springfield Mass”
My father, Owen Whitman Eames was the pastor of this church.
I have a Services of Worship Book given to Rebecca Rumrill by Bradley Gilmann , Waterford, Ct, July 16th, 1876. It is in Very Good condition.
Springfield has shown similar shortsightedness over the course of history. I graduated from Classical High (also neglected before closed in 1986 and developed for condos) next door not ever knowing that this church stood in the parking lot where my buddy parked his 66 Chevy (we graduated in 1979.) Also, it stood across State Street from the city library, a Carnegie endowment.
This building was razed in 1961, the year I was born and my mother remembers the church although she attended Emmanuel Cong. at White and Sumner and Commerce High in the 50s. Up the street my dad, grandfather and great grandfather where all Masons that attended Hampden Lodge in the old Masonic Temple, which the City now owns.
Seeing exterior and interior pics of this church makes me think if it had a few more years it would have been on the national register of architecture. Some links to interior pics below. My 2 cents. -Mark Barrett
It’s a shame the church was replaced by a simple parking lot. A huge loss for Springfield.