[115] Leaving the whole amount of outstanding Pew Taxes July 1, 1837 $49.08

The Committee take pleasure in stating to the Proprietors their opinion that great credit is due to the Treasurer for his vigilance in reducing the amount of uncollected Taxes, and for the general fidelity with which he has managed the money concerns of the Church.

All which is respectfully Submitted.

William Hayden Junior

Committee of Finance.

Levi Bliss

First Church, July 18, 1837.

A Communication was received from G. F. Thayer soliciting the Proprietors of this Church a deed of release of all claims on account of past breaches of the conditions in the deed which he received of the Deacons of this Church dated January 4,1 1829, and a confirmation to said Thayer of the Estate conveyed to him by that deed upon certain conditions.

After considerable debate, the application of Mr. Thayer, with the accompanying papers were committed to Messrs. Sprague, Hayden and Francis to consider and report.

The Committee appointed on the 19th day of April last, to consider the expediency of increasing the annual salary of the Pastor, were at their own request, excused from making a formal report at this time.

The Standing Committee were authorized to appoint a Sexton, from time to time, and to fix his Salary.

The Committee appointed at a former meeting on the subject of affording aid to the objects of the Boston Fraternity of Churches, made the following Report, which was accepted and Messrs. Wales, Gibbens and Francis were appointed a Committee to carry it into effect.

Boston, July 18, 1837.

The Committee to whom was referred a Communication from the Executive Committee of the Boston Fraternity of Churches, with instructions to consider and report, have attended to that service, [116] and respectfully submit what follows to the Proprietors of First Church.

Your Committee agree entirely with all that the communication contains respecting the value of the ministry to the poor in this City, and in expressing such a sentiment, they are but repeating what has been said before in the report of a Committee of this Church, a copy of which may be seen in its records. They believe, now, as was acknowledged then, that such a ministry has done good, And that a continuance of it promises many benefits, to our Community. At the same time, they see no reason to regret or alter the course that was then adopted by the First Church, declining, for reasons alledged, to be one of the branches of the association, that was at that time formed. Your Committee find, at the close of the report just referred to, a recommendation, that, since the establishment of the ministry at large, is worthy to be sustained, and since the manner in which subscriptions have been hitherto obtained for such an object has been always imperfect, and has of late become inconvenient, a Committee of three be appointed to devise and adopt means for gathering and transmitting annually a contribution to its funds. They learn, that, owing principally to the lamented death of one of that Committee, no corresponding measures were adopted. They would now therefore, bring the subject anew, as an important one to the consideration of the Church, urging the immediate fulfilment of the intention which it has already expressed.

In order to carry that intention into effect, two methods offer themselves, one, that of an annual contribution in the Church, the other, that of an annual subscription, among its members. The first is liable to the objections, that its application is too indiscriminate, that it is uncertain in its operation, and that it is almost sure to give small results.

They therefore recommend the adoption of the following Votes

That an annual subscription be immediately set on foot among the members of this Society.

That a Committee of three be appointed with full power to adopt a plan of subscription, and proceed to collect names in order that at a fixed time in each year, the fruits of this charitable endeavour may be handed over to The Boston Fraternity of Churches.

[117] That this time be the monday following the Commencement at Harvard University. That the Treasurer of this Society be the Organ, for collecting from year, to year, and transmitting the sums that may be subscribed.

That a Copy of this Report and of the Votes may be adopted, be sent without delay to the Executive Committee of the Boston Fraternity of Churches, by the Clerk of the First Church Society.

In behalf of the Committee,

N. L. Frothingham.

Adjourned. Daniel L. Gibbens Clerk.

Boston, July 23, 1837.

The Standing Committee met pursuant to notification, and Daniel Messinger Esquire was appointed Chairman for the ensuing year. The Committee appointed at the last meeting to wait on the Rev. Pastor and solicit a copy of his Sermon for publication, Reported that they had attended to that duty, And regret to say that Gentleman declines, furnishing a copy of the Sermon, and expresses his most lively satisfaction for the favor with which it was received.

Francis Dillaway was reappointed Sexton and his Salary fixed at One hundred dollars per annum.

Colonel Messinger, Major Phillips and the Rev. Dr. Frothingham were appointed a Committee to superintend the Organ Loft.

Messrs. Babcock, Barker, Morse and Doggett were appointed a Committee on Repairs.

Voted that this Committee be authorized to lease the house now occupied by Dr. Bigelow, for five years at an annual rent of $700.00 and taxes.

Messrs. Gibbens and Babcock with the Treasurer were appointed a Committee to report what in their opinion is a fair valuation of the Several Pews belonging to the Society, remaining unsold.

D. L. Gibbens Clerk.

[118] Boston, September 24, 1837. The Standing Committee met after the morning service.

The Committee on Repairs Reported that a New Pump is required on the premises occupied by J. Parker.

Whereupon it was Voted That the said Committee cause a New Pump to be procured, if in their judgement it shall be found necessary.

Messrs. Hayden and Appleton were appointed a Committee to ascertain on what terms a loan may be made to enable the Treasurer to pay certain Notes which will soon become due, and also such other Notes as are drawing six per cent interest.

The following Report was read and accepted. Viz.

The Committee who were instructed to ascertain what Pews remain unsold, and to report at what prices it would be expedient to offer them for sale, Have attended to that duty, and respectfully Report That they have carefully examined the location of every Pew belonging to the society, and recommend that the Treasurer be authorized to dispose of the following Pews for the sums set against their numbers respectively and that the Treasurer be directed to add to the taxes of such as may be let after the expiration of the present year a rent equal to the interest on the sums at which they are now appraised.

Pew No

2

$150

Pew No

125

$75

3

175

126

100

23

125

144

125

24

125

145

125

29

125

146

100

30

150

147

75

55

150

148

75

56

150

149

100

59

150

150

125

90

125

151

125

91

150

152

100

113

150

153

75

116

100

154

100

3825

118

100

119

75

27*

120

100

28*

121

125

128*

122

125

129*

123

100

124

75

2525

* These with a number of Pews not enumerated, to be used by Strangers until otherwise appropriated.

[119] Your Committee further recommend that the Treasurer be authorized to execute a Deed of Pew No 85 to David Francis Esq. whenever he shall relinquish his right in the Pew now to be transferred to Mr. Barker, And that the Treasurer be also authorized to execute a deed of Pew No 86 to Mr. Geo. Barker on his relinquishing his rights in the Pew No 87 formerly owned by him and recently removed by direction of the Proprietors.

Respectfully Submitted,

Daniel L. Gibbens

Committee

Samuel H. Babcock

B. B. Appleton

Boston, August 1, 1837.

Adjourned. Daniel L. Gibbens Clerk.

Boston, April 29, 1838.

The Standing Committee met after the Evening service, and Voted, unanimously, That the Clerk and D. Messinger Esq. be a Committee to wait on the Reverend Doctor Frothingham, and request a copy of the very interesting Sermon delivered by him this morning for the Press. Present Messrs. Phillips, Messinger, Gibbens, Babcock, Barker, and Morse, and The Treasurer.

Daniel L. Gibbens Clerk.

The above Committee waited on the Rev. Pastor in discharge of the duty assigned them, And that Gentleman declined furnishing a Copy of the Sermon for the Press.

[120] Boston, July 15, 1838.

The Proprietors of the First Church held a Meeting at the conclusion of the morning Service, agreeably to an invitation from the Desk.

It was stated to the Meeting by the Reverend Doctor Frothingham, that the Brattle Street Church was to be closed after the services of this day, in order for Repairs. Whereupon it was

Voted That the Reverend Pastor be requested to transmit to the Society worshipping in Brattle Street, the request of this Society, that its members accept of seats in this Church during the time their House shall be under repair, and that the Standing Committe be authorized and directed to attend to the Seating and accommodation of such as may accept this invitation.

Daniel L. Gibbens Clerk.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held at their Meeting House in Chauncy Place, on Tuesday, July 17, 1838.

Prayers were offered by the Rev. Doctor Frothingham. Daniel Messinger was appointed Moderator. The Records of the doings of the Society and of the Standing Committee were read by the Clerk.

Messrs. Thomas, Cutter and Rich were appointed a Committee to collect, assort and count the votes for Officers for the ensuing year.

Daniel L. Gibbens having declined being a candidate for the office of Clerk, the votes were collected, and it appeared that Thomas Sherwin was unanimously elected to that office.

The Committee of Finance made the following Report, which was accepted.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, on the subject of Finance, ask permission to submit the following as their Annual Report:

The Committee have carefully examined the Treasurer’s Account of his receipts and disbursements, during the year ending on the thirtieth day of June last, and find the same correctly cast and competently vouched.

The moneys received by the Treasurer, within the period before specified, have been derived from the following sources, viz.

[121] For Rents:

The two houses 39 and 41 Summer St. $700 each

1,400.00

The house No. 37 Summer St.

662.50

The School Rooms under the Church

407.75

The Cellar under the Church

150.00

$2,620.25

For a Note issued in behalf of the Church for money borrowed

1,000.00

For four pews sold, within the year

575.00

For taxes on the three houses leased

135.00

For Taxes on the Pews

1,779.62

Making the whole amount received by the Treasurer, for account of the Church, during the year

$6,109.87

To which there should be added, the Balance of money in the Treasurer’s hand July 1st 1837, as per the last Annual Report

239.16

And the whole amount of money placed at the credit of

the Church, during the year, is

$6,349.03

The disbursements made by the Treasurer, have been for the following purposes, viz.

For repairs of buildings

2,521.07

Salary of the Rev. Pastor

1,300.00

Expenses of Music

784.50

Amount of a Grant to the Rev. Pastor, under a special vote

of the Proprietors

500.00

Interest on the Debt of the Proprietors

398.76

City Taxes on the Church property

200.00

Amount allowed the Rev. Pastor, in lieu of his supply of fuel

125.00

Salary of the Sexton

100.00

Premium of Insurance on the buildings

72.80

Fuel for the Church

56.70

Commission for collecting Pew Taxes

34.82

Printing sermons

34.50

Books for the Sunday School

12.78

Contribution towards the Convention Dinner

12.75

Sundry incidental expenses, of very small amounts

22.00

Making the whole amount expended during the year

$6,175.68

The amount of money at the credit of the Church, is, as stated above

6,349.03

The amount expended, within the year

6,175.68

Leaving a final balance of money, in the hands of the Treasurer, on the 1st of July instant, amounting to

$173.35

On the first day of July, 1837, the Debt of the Proprietors of this Church amounted to

9,200.00

Since that time, a sum of money has [122] been borrowed, amounting to

1,000.00

Making the whole Debt, on the first of July instant

$10,200.00

On reviewing this statement of the condition of our financial affairs, the Committee think they have good reason to congratulate the Proprietors on the position in which they stand, in this respect.

We have, during the past year, in addition to our ordinary expenses, laid out in repairing our buildings, (the principal part of which was for the very judicious alterations in the entries and stairways of the Church,) the sum of

2,521.07

We have, also, had the pleasure to make to our Rev. Pastor, for his very useful and acceptable services, in addition to his stipulated salary, a grant of

500.00

Making an extra expenditure of

3,021.07

To defray this expenditure, we have availed ourselves of funds, in addition to our ordinary income, as follows, viz.

We have negotiated a new Loan of

1,000.00

We have decreased our corporate property, by the sale of four Pews, amounting to

575.00

Leaving a balance which has been defrayed out of the

1,575.00

ordinary annual income of the Church, amounting to

$1,446.07

The Committee have great pleasure in informing the Proprietors, that all the arrearages of back Pew Taxes have been fully collected and that, on the thirtieth ultimo, no pecuniary debt whatever was known to be due to the Church. All demands against the Church, of any considerable amount, except the debt above referred to, which may be denominated its funded debt, have been paid and discharged; and the Committee cannot help believing, that the prosperous state of its finances, furnishes a good omen of the success of our Church in its other and more important affairs.

All which is respectfully submitted.

William Hayden Junior

Committee of Finance.

Henry Cutter

Benjamin B. Appleton was unanimously reelected Treasurer.

Mr. Barker stated to the meeting, that Messrs. Francis and Morse had requested him to say, they severally declined a reelection as members of the Standing Committee. Mr. Gibbens also declined being a candidate. Whereupon, Messrs. [123] Cutter, Barker and Wales were appointed a Committee to select a list of Candidates, who reported the following list, and, the votes being collected, it appeared that the following named gentlemen were elected, viz.

  • Daniel Messinger
  • S. H. Babcock
  • William G. Brooks
  • James Phillips
  • Geo. Barker
  • B. B. Appleton
  • William Hayden Junior
  • Noah Doggett
  • John Hooper

Messrs. William Hayden Junior, S. H. Rich and J. E. Thayer were elected a Committee of Finance.

The Committee having in charge the subscription, in aid of the Ministry at large, made the following Report, viz.

The Committee appointed at the last Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church, to solicit subscriptions in aid of the Ministry at large in this city, have attended to that duty, and ask leave to report, that a general call was made on the Members of the Parish, which was received with general approbation. The result has been a subscription of $310.00 of which $295.00 have been collected. A compensation has been paid for collecting $45. say, $2.25 leaving a balance of $292.75, with the Treasurer, which amount he has paid over to the Treasurer of the Fraternity of Churches.

Respectfully submitted

per order

Boston, February 19, 1838.

Tho. B. Wales.

Voted That the Report be accepted, and that David Francis, Seth Thomas, and T. B. Wales Junior be a committee to receive further subscriptions, and pay the same over to the Treasurer.

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorized to appoint a Sexton, fix his salary and prescribe his duties.

The Committee to whom the communication of G. F. Thayer was referred, Reported the following votes, which were adopted; viz.

Voted that the Treasurer be authorized to execute to Gideon F. Thayer Esq. a deed re[124]leasing to him all claims for any past breaches of the conditions in the deed from the Deacons of this Society to said Thayer, dated January 4, 1829; and confirming the same estate to him and his heirs, subject to the same conditions as are contained in said deed from the Deacons of this Society.

Voted That the Treasurer give to said Thayer a license in writing, permitting the building, erected upon the land conveyed to said Thayer, by the Deacons of this Society, by deed dated Jan. 4, 1829, to be used for the delivery of lectures and the meetings of peaceable Societies, until such license shall be revoked by the further order of this Society.

On motion of W. Hayden Esq. the following vote was unanimously adopted, viz.

Voted That the Salary of the Pastor of this Church, be at the rate of two thousand dollars per annum, to be paid him quarterly, from the first of July instant, in addition to his house-rent and fuel.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Daniel L. Gibbens Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held July 22, 1838.

Col. Daniel Messinger was appointed Chairman for the current year.

A communication from the Rev. Dr. Frothingham was read, and it was Voted That the Proprietors be requested to meet on the next Lord’s day, and that the said letter be then communicated to the Society.

Voted That this meeting be adjourned to Wednesday afternoon next, then to meet in the vestry at 5 o’clock.

(The above record was made from Mr. Gibbens’ minutes.)

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

The Standing Committee met July 25, 1838, pursuant to adjournment. The oath of office was administered to the Clerk by D. L. Gibbens Esq. Francis Dillaway was reappointed Sexton, with a Salary of one hundred dollars per annum.

[125] Messrs. Babcock, Appleton and Doggett were appointed a Committee on Repairs.

Messrs. Messinger, Barker, and Hooper were appointed a Committee to superintend the Organ Loft.

Voted That Rev. Dr. Frothingham be invited to serve, ex officio, as one of the above Committee on the Organ Loft.

Voted That the thanks of this Committee be tendered to Mr. Appleton, for the very faithful manner in which he has performed the duties of Treasurer.

Voted That the thanks of this Committee be given to Mr. Gibbens, for his faithful and valuable services for many years, as a member of this Committee.

Voted That the Committee on Repairs confer with the Matron of the Female Orphan Asylum, in regard to the pews occupied by the children of that institution.

Voted That the same Committee be authorized to paint the Society’s block of houses in Summer st.

Adjourned to 29. inst. after morning service.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

July 29, 1838.

The Proprietors met by request of the Standing Committee, and Col. Messinger was called to the chair. A Communication from Rev. Dr. Frothingham was read and it was Voted that it be put on record. The following is a copy of that Communication: viz.

July 18, 1838.

My Dear Sir,

I received this morning a copy of a vote passed in the First Church, at the Annual Meeting of yesterday.

“That the salary of the Pastor be at the rate of two thousand dollars per annum, in addition to house-rent and fuel.”

Permit me to express my sense of this great liberality through you to the Proprietors of the Church.

When, a year ago, there was voted me a grant of five hundred dollars, while I felt sensible of the kindness that directed such a donation, my first impulse was to acknowledge that kindness, without accepting the gift;

[126] as I had done eleven years before, when the Society generously offered to assume the expense of supplying the Pulpit during my absence abroad. This hesitation, and a little embarrassment that went along with it, had no other effect than to delay till now the expression of a thankfulness, which was sincerely felt. As I reflected on the subject, connected as it was with the prospect, held out in the Society’s vote, of a permanent increase of my salary, it seemed to me that to decline their bounty would look like setting myself above it, or like mistrusting their cordiality; that it would be a sort of injustice to my successors, and, at any rate, would be setting up too singular a precedent.

In naming these reasons, I have already said that I accept the liberality which has just been shewn me. I accept it with heart-felt acknowledgments. I accept it as an evidence of the satisfaction, regard and confidence of those, to whom I have the privilege of ministering. It is a sincere gratification to me, that such services as I am able to render, are met by so friendly and generous a spirit.

At the same time, I hope to be excused if I make one reserve. Fuel is not considered, at present, as one of the regular items of a minister’s salary. Mine was commuted several years ago for a fixed sum, that would stand out as an odd number in the account now proposed. The offer of the Society is munificent without it. I would prefer, therefore, to decline that part of their vote.

Please, Dear Sir, to communicate this acknowledgment of mine to the Society, in whatever manner you may judge best, and accept for yourself the assurance of my affectionate regard and highest respect.

N. L. Frothingham.

Hon. Daniel Messinger.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

September 5, 1838.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was holden to consider the expediency of procuring a new organ. Present Messrs. Messinger, Barker, Babcock, Doggett, Brooks, Hooper and Appleton.

Mr. Appleton was requested to act as clerk pro. tem.

[127] Voted That at the present time it is inexpedient to put up a new organ at the expense of the Society.

The above record was made from notes taken by Mr. Appleton.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

Boston, September 16, 1838.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was holden, all the members being present.

A communication relative to the Sunday school, kept in the vestry of the church, from Messrs. Patterson and Deane, was laid before the board; and it was Voted that the subject be referred to a Committee.

Rev. Mr. Frothingham, Messrs. Hayden and Brooks were appointed to constitute that Committee.

Adjourned to the wednesday following at 4 o’clock P.M.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

Boston, September 19, 1838.

The Standing Committee met this day agreeably to adjournment. The following Report was laid before the Board: viz.

Boston, September 17, 1838.

The Committee, appointed to consider a communication from the teachers of the Sunday School kept in the Vestry of the First Church, have attended to that service and respectfully submit the following Vote.

That whereas, the school is deprived of the valuable services of its superintendent, who has faithfully devoted himself to it from its commencement, and also is about to lose others of its teachers; losses which cannot easily be supplied;

And whereas, the number of its pupils is quite small, with the exception of the children belonging to the Boston Female Asylum, who do not seem to need more of a kind of instruction, of which they receive so much within their own institution;

And whereas, the little success of the endeavors that have been already made to increase its numbers, by application to individual parents and by public notices from the pulpit, indicates no dis[128]position on the part of the worshipers in the First Church to avail themselves of its means;

And whereas, it is the opinion of this Committee that a school of this sort, in order to be useful, must be set up by a spontaneous, general and hearty movement from the bosom of the Society itself, and not by any impulse or recommendation from without; it appearing to them also more hopeful, to create a new organization, should circumstances hereafter encourage and require it, than to revive a decayed one;

It is, therefore, deemed inexpedient that the proprietors of the First Church should make any further exertion to sustain this school.

signed

N. L. Frothingham

William Hayden Jr.

William G. Brooks

The above Report was accepted, and it was Voted that the Clerk transmit a copy of the same to Messrs. Patterson and Deane.

Voted the above Committee be increased by the addition of two other gentlemen; and Messrs. Babcock and Hooper were appointed the additional members.

On motion of Mr. Babcock, it was Voted “that this Committee be instructed to offer some plan of instruction as a substitute for the present Sunday School and report.”

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

Boston, October 14, 1838.

At a meeting of the Proprietors, holden pursuant to notice from the desk, it was Voted That a Committee of seven be raised to consider the expediency of repairing or exchanging the organ of this society, and report at an adjourned meeting.

The following gentlemen were appointed to constitute the Committee, viz. Messrs. Bancroft, Thomas, Babcock, J. E. Thayer, Rich, Stevenson and Abbott; To whom were added, Mr. Chadwick and Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

October 28, 1838.

The Proprietors of the First Church met pursuant to notice from the pulpit and notifications deposited in the pews.

Col. D. Messinger was appointed Moderator and D. L. Gibbens Clerk pro tem.

The Committee appointed at a previous [129] meeting to consider the subject, reported in favor of procuring a New Organ. The Report was accepted, and Messrs. D. Messinger, S. Thomas, B. B. Appleton, P. S. Shelton and C. Sprague were appointed a Committee to procure a new organ.

Voted That the Subscription Paper be submitted to the same Committee, with instructions to obtain subscriptions to the full amount which shall be necessary for the purchase of the new organ or for the exchange, if possible.

Voted That Rev. Dr. Frothingham be added to the Committee.

Voted That the Committee be authorized to fill all vacancies which may occur in their body.

Adjourned.

Attested by D. L. Gibbens Clerk P. Tem.

The above record is from notes taken by Mr. Gibbens.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

July 16, 1839.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held at their Meeting house in Chauncy Place. Prayers were offered by the Rev. Pastor, and T. B. Wales Esq. was chosen Moderator. The Records of the proceedings of the last year were then read by the Clerk. Messrs. Cutter and Rich were appointed to collect, assort and count the votes for Officers for the ensuing year.

Thomas Sherwin was chosen Clerk, and was duly qualified by taking the oath of office, administered by D. L. Gibbens Esq.

The Committee of Finance made the following Report, which was accepted: viz.

The Standing Committee appointed by the Proprietors of the First Church, on the subject of Finance, respectfully ask leave to submit their Annual Report on the pecuniary affairs of the Church.

The Committee have attended to the examination of the Treasurer’s Account of his receipts and payments in behalf of the Proprietors, and find the same accurately cast and sufficiently vouched.

The Income of the Church, for the year ending on the thirtieth day of June last, has been realized from the following sources; viz.

[130] For rent of the two Houses, numbered 39 and 41

Summer Street, at $700. each, per annum

1,400.00

For rent of the House, No 37 same street

650.00

For rent of three School Rooms in the basement of the Church, at $125; $125; and $100

380.002

For rent of the Cellars under the Church, etc.

190.00

Making the whole Income from Rents

2,620.00

The Treasurer has, also, received for Taxes on the Pews, during the year, the sum of

1,871.78

For three Pews sold

360.00

For repayment of Taxes assessed on the Houses in Summer Street

132.30

Of Insurance Company, for damage to Church by fire

93.87

For a Note issued in behalf of the Proprietors for money borrowed

2,000.00

And he had on hand, in money, on the first day of July, 1838, a balance of

173.15

Making the whole amount of Receipts, standing at the credit of the Church, during the year

$7,251.10

Various expenditures have been made during the year, for the following purposes, viz.

Paid the principal sums of two Notes due from the Proprietors—one to Esther Clark, for $1,200—the other to Charles C. Clarke for $1,000—both of which are cancelled

2,200.00

Paid the Salary of the Rev. Pastor of the Church—one quarter at $1,300—the last three quarters at $2,000 per annum

1,825.00

Paid for Repairs of the Church, and other buildings belonging to the Proprietors, including sundry articles of furniture

1,078.62

Paid interest on the Church Debt

720.82

For expenses of Music

799.74

For Taxes on the Church Property

196.00

For repairing, altering and tuning the Organ

110.00

For salary of the Sexton

100.00

For Insurance of the Church Property

72.80

For fuel

48.42

For printing Sermons and notifications

35.00

For contribution towards the expenses of the Annual Dinner for the Convention of Clergymen

13.75

For expenses attending the examination of a new Organ

10.75

For expenses of the Thursday Lecture

5.00

Making the whole amount of expenditures charged to the Proprietors of this Church, during the year

$7,215.90

The total amount of Income of the year, is, as stated above

7,251.10

The total of Expenditure

7,215.90

Leaving a balance of money, in the hands of the Treasurer, on the first day of July instant, amounting to

$35.20

[131] The Debt of the Proprietors of this Church, on the first day of July, 1838, as stated in the last Annual Report was

$10,200.00

Since that time, two Notes constituting part of that Debt, have been paid and canceled, amounting to

2,200.00

And a new Note has been issued, in behalf of the Proprietors, for money borrowed, amounting to

2,000.00

Making a reduction of the Debt to amount of

$200.00

And leaving the actual Debt of the Proprietors of this Church, on the first of the present month of July

$10,000.00

All which is respectfully submitted to the Proprietors.

William Hayden Jr.

Committee of Finance.

Samuel H. Rich

B. B. Appleton was unanimously elected Treasurer.

Messrs. Josiah Bradlee, D. Messinger and Col. Thomas were appointed a Committee to nominate the Standing Committee.

The following gentlemen were nominated and chosen to constitute the Standing Committee, viz.

  • Messrs. J. S. Foster
  • William Hayden Jr.
  • N. Doggett
  • J. Phillips
  • S. H. Babcock
  • B. B. Appleton
  • D. L. Gibbens
  • Geo. Barker
  • John Hooper

Voted that the thanks of the Proprietors of the First Church be presented to Col. D. Messinger, for his long, faithful and very valuable services, as a member of the Standing Committee of this Church.

Messrs. Hayden, Rich and J. E. Thayer were chosen to constitute the Committee of Finance.

Voted that the Standing Committee be empowered to appoint a Sexton and fix his salary.

The Committee for the purpose of procuring a New Organ, reported that it is at present inexpedient to take any measures for carrying into effect that vote of the Society, by which they were appointed. This Report was read and accepted.

[132] On motion of Col. Messinger it was Voted that, in future, three of the Standing Committee go out of office each year, and, that, if not so many as three decline reelection, the three eldest in office be omitted by the Proprietors, in making the choice.

Col. Thomas made a verbal report in behalf of the Committee appointed to procure subscriptions in aid of the ministry at large, stating that about $2503 had been obtained and paid over to the Treasurer of the Fraternity of Churches.

Voted that the same Committee, consisting of Messrs. Francis, Thomas and T. B. Wales Jr. be a committee, for the same purpose, the ensuing year.

Rev. Dr. Frothingham, on the part of the Committee appointed to reorganize the Sunday School, offered a verbal report, in which he stated, that the School had been reorganized under favorable auspices, and already contained on its list the names of about 50 children.

On motion of Mr. Gibbens, Voted unanimously, that pew No. 2 be transferred, by deed from the Treasurer, to Rev. Dr. Frothingham, in order to make him a member of this Corporation.

Voted that the meeting be dissolved.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

Boston, July 20, 1839.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the vestry.

D. L. Gibbens was elected Chairman for the current year.

A communication was read from Dea. Foster declining to serve as one of the Standing Committee.

Messrs. Babcock, Doggett and Appleton were chosen a Committee on Repairs.

The following gentlemen, viz. Messrs. Gibbens, Barker and Hooper, were chosen a Committee on the Organ Loft. Rev. Dr. Frothingham was also appointed, ex officio, on this Committee.

A communication was read from the Sexton, Mr. Dillaway, in which he asked for an increase of salary.

Voted that the salary of the Sexton be $125.00 per annum; and Mr. Dillaway was elected to that office.

[133] Voted that the Committee on Repairs instruct the Sexton with regard to his duties.

Voted that the Committee on Repairs have full power to relet, for a term of years, the dwelling house occupied by Mr. Parker.

Voted that Mr. Babcock be a Committee to adjust and authorize to be paid a demand of Mr. Zeuner’s for services.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

November 2, 1839.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was holden this day, at 4 o’clock P. M. Present of the Committee Messrs. Gibbens, Doggett, Barker and Hooper; also, Rev. Dr. Frothingham and the Clerk.

A circular, addressed to the Pastor by N. F. Cunningham and Company, soliciting a contribution from the Congregation, in aid of the Mobile sufferers, was communicated to the board.

Voted That in consequence of the unprecedented mode in which this application is made, no further measures be taken upon the subject.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

November 10, 1839.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee held after morning service, a circular relative to contributing to the relief of the Mobile sufferers, was laid before the Board, and it was Voted that a collection be taken in this society, for the above purpose, on the following Sunday.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

The Collection, taken November 17th in conformity with the preceding vote, amounted, according to Dea. Foster’s report, to $173.74.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held after morning service, March 22, 1840.

The Committee on the Organ Loft made a partial report and asked for instructions from the Standing Committee. The Standing Committee were unanimous in the opin[134]ion, that the services of Miss Woodward should be retained, and that the Committee on Music should act, in other respects, as they might deem expedient.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church, March 29, 1840.

It was Voted that, in the opinion of this Committee, it is inexpedient to open the Church on the afternoon of the approaching Fast day.

Voted that Messrs. Gibbens and Babcock be a Committee to communicate the above Vote to the Rev. Pastor, and, if he concur in the decision, to request him to give notice accordingly from the desk this afternoon.

The Rev. Dr. Frothingham, after reading the proclamation of the Executive, gave notice, that the morning service would be commenced at the usual hour on Thursday next, and that the afternoon service would be omitted on that day.

Notes from which the above record was made, were transmitted to the Clerk by the Chairman of the Standing Committee.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee, May 24, 1840, after morning service.

Voted that the Committee on Repairs be authorized to let the vacant room in the vestry for the use of a primary School, if they think it expedient.

Voted that the same Committee make enquiries with regard to the expense of a wooden fence, also of a brick wall, between the grounds of the Society and those of G. F. Thayer Esq.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held, June 7, 1840.

The Chairman stated that P. C. Brooks Esq. had presented to the Mayor and Aldermen a petition to relay the common sewer in Summer st.

Whereupon, Messrs. W. Hayden Jr. and D. L. Gibbens were appointed to appear before the Major and Aldermen to attend to the interests of the Society.

[135] The Committee on the partition fence, between the grounds of Mr. Thayer and those of the society, reported progress, and had leave to proceed in their enquiries.

The same Committee reported that it is inexpedient to let the vestry for the use of a primary school.

Adjourned.

Made from the notes of the Chairman.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

June 28, 1840.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee a circular addressed to Rev. Dr. Frothingham and soliciting aid to the Theological School at Cambridge, was laid before the Board.

Whereupon, it was Voted that the subject be brought before the Proprietors at their next annual meeting.

From notes of the Chairman.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held July 21, 1840.

Prayers having been offered by the Pastor, D. L. Gibbens Esq. was chosen Moderator and the records of the proceedings of the Proprietors and of the Standing Committee, for the last year, were read by the Clerk.

Messrs. Bradlee and Bigelow were chosen a Committee to collect, assort and count the votes for Officers for the ensuing year.

Thomas Sherwin was elected Clerk, and took the oath of office, administered by W. Hayden Esq.

It was moved by the Clerk that the vote, passed at the last Annual Meeting, relative to the election of the Standing Committee, be rescinded. Passed in the negative.

The following letter from Dr. Frothingham was then read by the Clerk.

Boston, August 5, 1839.

My Dear Sir,

Having returned to my quiet home after more than a week’s absence, I am now able to make a more full and proper reply to your communication of a Vote of the First Church, passed at their last annual meeting.

The Society on that occasion voted me the grant of a pew, in order to constitute me a [136] proprietor, and consequently a voter among them. I fully and thankfully appreciate the kindness of the motive that dictated such a proceeding. But I feel that I possess already, without any such formality, all the freedom that I desire, and all the influence that I deserve; and it seems to me, that my position as their minister makes it on many accounts undesirable that I should sit as a voter in their concerns; especially when such concerns are of property, or involve personal interests or feelings. Besides, I am unwilling to have the care, or to receive the rents of a pew, which I have no occasion to occupy. I must beg, therefore, respectfully to decline their friendly offer, and ask of your goodness to communicate this conclusion of mine, in the way you think most fit.

With the sincerest respect and regard,

Yours very truly,

N. L. Frothingham.

Thomas Sherwin Esq.

The Committee of Finance made the following report, which was accepted.

“The Standing Committee, who have in their charge the financial affairs of the First Church, ask leave to submit to the Proprietors the following, as their annual Report:

The Committee find that the Income of the Church, for the past year, which ended on the thirtieth ultimo, has been derived from the following sources, viz.

There has been received, for Taxes on the Pews, within the year, the sum of

$1844.41

For Rents of Property belonging to the Church, as follows:

For the House No 37 Summer st. occupied by Dr. Putnam

650.00

For the House No 39 Summer Street occupied by Mrs. Eliot

700.00

For the House No 41 Summer Street occupied by Mr. Blake

700.00

For three School Rooms under the Church, one at $125. one at $100. and one at $125.—for three quarters of the year

300.00

For the Cellar, under the Church

150.00

Making the whole Amount of Rents received

2500.00

There has, also, been received, from the occupants of the Houses, in repayment of their portion of [137] the Taxes, the sum of

152.55

Which makes the whole Income of the year amount to

4496.96

To which should be added the balance of money in the Treasurer’s hands, at the commencement of the year

35.20

And the total amount of funds, which were available for the purposes of the year, was

4532.16

The following Expenditures have been made, within the year, viz.

The Salary of the Reverend Pastor

2000.00

Expenses of Music, including $50. for repairing the Organ

1009.87

Interest on the Debt of the Church

480.00

Repairs of buildings, carpets and cushions

297.50

Taxes on the Church property

226.00

Salary of the Sexton

125.00

Premium of Insurance

72.80

For Fuel

44.30

Contribution towards the expenses of the Dinner for the Convention of the Clergy, and the Thursday lecture

15.50

Commission for collecting Taxes, and for advertising room, and printing bills

15.24

Making the total Expenditure of the year

$4286.21

The whole of available funds, was, as stated above

4532.16

Total of expenditure

4286.21

Leaving a balance of money, in the hands of the Treasurer, at the credit of the Church, on the first day of July instant, amounting to

245.95

No change has taken place in the amount of the Debt of the Church, within the last year. It stands, as it did at the commencement of the year, at ten thousand dollars. As the rate of interest paid on this Debt is six per cent, and as it is possible the money may be, hereafter, obtained at a more favorable rate, this Committee would suggest the expediency of authorizing the Committee of Finance, now to be appointed, to effect such a change, if it should be found practicable.

The Committee further report that they have carefully examined the accounts of the Treasurer, and find them rightly cast, and competently vouched.

Respectfully submitted to the Proprietors.

William Hayden

Committee of Finance.

First Church, July 21, 1840.

[138] B. B. Appleton was unanimously elected Treasurer.

Messrs. D. L. Gibbens, W. Hayden, George Barker, B. B. Appleton, John Hooper, S. L. Abbott, Thomas Sherwin, F. H. Bradlee and T. B. Wales Jr. were chosen to constitute the Standing Committee.

Messrs. W. Hayden, J. E. Thayer, and S. H. Rich were elected Committee on Finance.

A circular relative to the Theological School at Cambridge was then read by the Moderator.

It was moved by Mr. Cutter that the subject be laid on the table, which motion was afterwards withdrawn; and Messrs. Wales, Bradlee and Appleton were appointed a Committee to collect subscriptions in aid of said School.

On motion of Mr. Bradlee it was Voted that the Pastor have permission to be absent from his charge, six or eight weeks, during this summer; and, that the Standing Committee communicate to him this permission.

On motion of Mr. Wales, it was Voted That the Standing Committee take charge of the subscription for the Fraternity of Churches, and appoint a Committee of three from their Board, or from the Proprietors, to carry the subject into effect.

Voted that the Standing Committee cause the Church to be thoroughly examined by competent persons, and such repairs to be made as may be deemed expedient.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held July 22, 1840.

D. L. Gibbens was chosen Chairman of the Board.

Messrs. B. B. Appleton, G. Barker and T. B. Wales Jr. were chosen the Committee on Repairs.

D. L. Gibbens, S. L. Abbott and J. Hooper were chosen the Committee on Music.

Francis Dillaway was chosen Sexton, and his salary for the ensuing year was fixed at $100.

D. L. Gibbens and Thomas Sherwin were constituted [139] a Committee to wait on the Pastor and communicate to him the vote of the Proprietors giving his permission of absence.

Voted that the Committee on Repairs cause the Church to be carefully examined by competent persons, in order to ascertain what repairs are needed.

Voted that Mr. J. Preston and Mr. Washburn be employed to make the examination.

Voted that T. B. Wales Jr., Rev. Mr. Hamilton, and J. West be a Committee to receive subscriptions, in aid of the Fraternity of Churches.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held July 26, 1840.

A Report, accompanied with a plan, both prepared by Messrs. Preston and Washburn, and relating to the condition of the meeting-house, was laid before the Board.

It was also stated that Messrs. Wales and Bradlee had declined to accept their appointment as members of the Standing Committee.

The Board then voted that the above Report be laid before the Proprietors, and that a meeting of the same, for this purpose and for filling the vacancies in the Standing Committee, be called, on the first Monday of the ensuing August, at 6 o’clock P.M.

Adjourned.

Communicated to the Clerk by the Chairman of the Standing Committee.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Proprietors was held August 3, 1840.

D. L. Gibbens Esq. was chosen Moderator and Messrs. Cutter and Wales were appointed to collect and count the votes, and Messrs. S. H. Babcock and J. West were elected members of the Standing Committee to fill the vacancies in that Board.

The Chairman then read a letter from the Rev. Pastor, in which he declines availing himself of the permission to be absent from his charge, which was offered to him by vote of the Proprietors at their Annual meeting.

Voted that the letter be put on file.

[140] A report on the condition of the meeting house drawn up by Messrs. Preston and Washburn was read to the meeting.

Whereupon, it was moved by Mr. Cutter, that the subject of repairs be referred to the Standing Committee, with full powers.

An amendment was offered by Mr. Bancroft, viz. that said Committee shall not involve the Society in debt—which amendment was not sustained.

The original motion was then carried, with the condition, that no general repairs shall, at present, be made on the interior of the Church.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held August 8, 1840.

Mr. Babcock was chosen to supply the vacancy in the Committee on Repairs.

Voted that Messrs. Preston, Washburn, Hammond and Shaw be requested to make another examination of the roof of the Church and make a report on its condition.

Voted that the Committee on Repairs cause an estimate to be made of the probable expense of painting the exterior of the Church.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

August 30, 1840.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee a report on the condition of the meeting house, by Messrs. Shaw, Remick and Hammond, was communicated to the Board, and it was Voted that the report be approved of by the Committee.

A report was made by the Committee on Repairs, that a wooden fence, between the Society’s grounds and those of Mr. Thayer, had been completed.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held October 10, 1840.

It was Voted that the Committee on Repairs cause the glazing in the pulpit window to be replaced with ground glass, if, after having consulted the Rev. Pastor, they shall think such a change expedient.

Voted that Treasurer be authorized to consult [141] legal counsel relative to the deed, which he was empowered to execute to G. F. Thayer Esq. by vote of the Proprietors, at their Annual Meeting in 1838.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held July 20, 1841.

Dea. Foster was elected Moderator; after which the Records of the last year were read by the Clerk.

Messrs. Cutter and Huntington were chosen a Committee to collect and count the votes.

Thomas Sherwin was chosen Clerk, and took the usual oath, administered by William Hayden Esq.

The Committee of Finance then made the following Report, which was accepted, viz.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, on the subject of Finance, respectfully ask leave to submit their annual Report.

The Committee have examined the accounts of the Treasurer, and find them correctly cast, and properly vouched.

The payments of the Treasurer, for account of the Proprietors, within the year which ended on the thirtieth day of June last, were for the following purposes, viz.

For repairs of the Church, the Dwelling Houses, Yards, etc.

$3,005.45

For Salary of the Rev. Pastor of the Church

2,000.00

For Interest of the Debt

845.00

For Music

834.99

For City Taxes on Real Estate

220.00

Salary of the Sexton

100.00

Premium of Insurance

72.80

Commission on collecting—for this and the past year

58.23

Printings sermons, Music Books, Sunday School Books etc.

62.38

Fuel

37.50

Surveying roof of the Church

30.00

Amount carried forward

$7266.35

[142] Amount brought forward

$7266.35

Convention Dinner and Thursday Lecture

15.00

Making the whole amount disbursed by the Treasurer, on account of the Church

$7281.35

Within the same year, the Treasurer has received, for account of the Proprietors, the following sums of money, viz.

For Rents—Of George B. Blake rent of House

$700.00

Of Mrs. Eliot rent of House

700.00

Of Dr. Putnam rent of House

650.00

Of E. T. Hastings rent of Cellar

150.00

Of Miss Whitney rent of School room

125.00

Of Miss Adams rent of School room

50.00

Of Miss Spear rent of School room

25.00

Of Miss Mitchell rent of School room

75.00

Of Miss Lothrop rent of School room

50.00

Of F. Bowers rent of School room

62.36

Making the whole amount received for rents

$2,587.36

Amount received for taxes on Pews

1,843.61

Received of tenants—for Taxes on the Houses

148.50

Received for Pew No 113—sold

155.00

Amount borrowed on Note, to James Parker

2,000.00

Making the whole amount received by the Treasurer, on account of the Church, within the year

6,734.47

Which, with the balance of money which he had on hand, at the commencement of the year

245.95

Makes the whole amount standing at the credit of the Proprietors within the year

6,980.42

The total amount with which the Treasurer charges the Proprietors, within the year, is, as above stated

7,281.35

The amount at their credit on his Books, is, as above stated

6,980.42

Leaving a balance, being the excess of payments over the receipts, and which balance was due the Treasurer on the first instant, amounting to

$300.93

The Debt of the Proprietors, as stated in the last Annual Report, amounted to exactly

10,000.00

Since then an additional loan has been made amounting to

2,000.00

Making the Debt, on the first day of July instant

12,000.00

Thus, it appears that, within the last year, this Church has not only expended its regular annual income, but it has gone further into debt, to the amount of

2,000.00

A balance has been expended, which was on hand at the beginning of the year, amounting to

245.95

And a balance of account was due to the treasurer, at the close of the year, amounting to

300.93

[143] Making the excess of the expenditure over the income

2,546.88

This excess, it will be obvious at once to the Proprietors, has been caused, entirely, by the extraordinary repairs, which it was found necessary to make upon the Church. It is believed that these repairs have been made with a due regard to economy, and those who know the state of the budding before they were made, will hardly entertain a doubt of the propriety of this expenditure.

At the commencement of the last financial year, the debt of $10,000.00 bore interest at the rate of six per cent, per annum. Since that time, eight thousand of that ten thousand, and the two thousand borrowed on the new loan, have been placed at the rate of 5½ per cent. per annum. So that the Proprietors now owe a debt of $10,000.00—bearing interest at 5½ per cent. and $2,000.—bearing interest at 6 per cent. per annum.

All which is respectfully submitted to the Proprietors.

William Hayden

Committee of Finance.

J. Eliot Thayer

Samuel H. Rich

First Church, July 20, 1841.

Voted that the Report of the Committee of Finance be accepted.

B. B. Appleton was chosen Treasurer.

Voted that the Resolve passed at the Annual meeting of 1839, requiring three of the Standing Committee go out of office each year, be rescinded.

A vote of Thanks to the Standing Committee of the last year was passed. Messrs. Hayden, Barker and Sherwin declined being candidates for re-election on the Standing Committee.

The following gentlemen were then elected a Standing Committee for the ensuing year, viz.

[144]

D. L. Gibbens

Standing Committee

B. B. Appleton

John Hooper

S. L. Abbot

Joseph West

J. P. Bigelow

John E. Thayer

S. H. Rich

J. E. Thayer

were chosen a Committee of Finance

T. B. Wales

J. Hooper

Old State House and Old Brick Meeting House, 1798

From a policy of the Massachusetts Fire Insurance Company

The following Resolve was submitted by J. E. Thayer and passed, viz.

Voted That a Committee of five be chosen, to take into consideration the expediency of raising the taxes on the Pews in the First Church, and also to alter the valuation of the pews in said Church, and to report at a meeting of the Proprietors of said Church, to be called by giving notice to said Proprietors of the object of said meeting.

The following gentlemen were chosen to constitute this Committee, viz. Messrs. S. H. Babcock, Dea. Foster, J. E. Thayer, H. Cutter, J. T. Stevenson.

Voted that the Standing Committee take charge of the Subscription in aid of the Fraternity of Churches.

Voted on motion of Mr. Wales, that Rev. Dr. Frothingham, Geo. Bancroft and Charles Sprague be a Committee to consider the expediency of adopting a new collection of Psalms and Hymns, and report to the Proprietors of the Church.

Voted that the Standing Committee appoint a Sexton, and fix his Salary.

Adjourned. T. Sherwin Clerk.

[145] A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Church, July 31, 1841.

D. L. Gibbens was elected Chairman of the Committee for the current year.

Messrs. Appleton, Babcock and West were chosen a Committee on Repairs.

Messrs. Gibbens, Abbot and Hooper were chosen a Committee on Music. Francis Dillaway was chosen Sexton, and his Salary was fixed at $100 for all services in the capacity of Sexton.

Voted that the Committee on Repairs instruct the Sexton relative to his duties.

Messrs. J. E. Thayer, Rich, and T. B. Wales Jr, were chosen a Committee to receive subscriptions in aid of the Fraternity of Churches.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held September 23, to consider a request from Messrs. S. F. Holbrook and W. B. Spooner for the use of the Church for a Temperance Lecture.

And it was Voted that as there are no fixtures for the purpose of lighting, and the house is insured with the understanding that no evening meetings be held in it, the Committee must, though reluctantly, decline granting the request.

If, however, the applicants should want the use of the house for an afternoon, it would be most cheerfully granted.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held November 14, 1841.

Reports from the Committee on raising the taxes on the pews, and the Committee on a new collection of Psalms and Hymns, were communicated; and it was Voted that a meeting of the Proprietors be called on November 24, at 3 o clock P.M., for the purpose of receiving and considering these reports.

[146] Voted that printed notifications be issued stating the objects of the meeting, and requesting punctual attendance.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee, held November 21, 1841, it was suggested that an additional singer was wanted.

And it was Voted that the subject be left to the discretion of the Committee on Music.

Voted that the Treasurer and Clerk cause plans of the Church to be drawn, in which the proprietors of the several pews shall be designated.

Voted that Messrs. Gibbens and Babcock be a Committee to confer with the City Authorities, relative to an assessment laid upon the Society for repairs in the common sewer.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

A meeting of the Proprietors was held, on November 24, 1841.

Dea. J. Foster was chosen Moderator.

A Report of the Committee appointed at the Annual meeting to consider the expediency of introducing a new collection of Psalms and Hymns, was read and accepted.

A motion was made to reconsider, but was negatived.

Voted that the Standing Committee ascertain on what conditions a supply of the Christian Psalter, the collection recommended in the Report, can be obtained.

A Report of the Committee to consider the expediency of making a new valuation of the Pews, and of raising the taxes on the pews, was read.

It was moved that the subject be indefinitely postponed. Passed in the negative.

Voted that the Report be recomitted to the same Committee, with instructions to make a new valuation of the pews, according to their respective values and report.

Voted That the 1st Article of the By-laws be so far altered, that the Annual Meeting of the Proprietors shall hereafter be held on the Third Tuesday of April each year.

Adjourned.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

[147] A meeting of the Standing Committee was held November 28, 1841.

The Chairman stated the terms upon which a supply of the Christian Psalter could be obtained.

The Chairman and Mr. Hooper were appointed a Committee to inquire into the expense of copies on extra paper and in extra binding, also to ascertain when the Society could be furnished with copies.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

The Standing Committee met in the Church December 25, 1841.

Papers relating to repairs and lease of the house occupied by Mr. Blake were read, and the Committee on Repairs were instructed to propose a lease to Mr. Blake in the common form; giving him permission to remove his Furnace and Water-closet, he leaving the premises in good order; also giving him the privilege of occupying the premises three or five years, as he may elect, only he is to give three months notice of his intention to leave. But the Committee will give him no obligation.

The Committee directed that six Hymn Books should be furnished for the Minister’s Pew.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

The Standing Committee met January 16, 1842.

Voted that the Christian Psalter be introduced in the services of the Church, on the second Sunday of February 1842; and that the Clerk post up a notice of the same.

Voted that the book binder be directed to have in readiness fifty copies in each of the two best kinds of binding.

The subject of subscription in aid of the Associated Churches was brought up, and it was Voted that no further measures, at present, be taken with regard to this matter.

Thomas Sherwin Clerk.

[148] The Annual meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held on Tuesday the 19th day of April 1842—agreeably to the alteration of the by-laws, adopted at a meeting held the 24th day of November, 1841.

Prayers having been offered by the Reverend Pastor of the Church, the meeting made choice of Deacon James H. Foster for Moderator.

It having been announced by Mr. Gibbens that he was authorized by Mr. Sherwin to decline reelection, the meeting made choice, by ballot, of John Prescott Bigelow for their Clerk for the year ensuing. The oath of office was then administered to the Clerk, by Mr. Gibbens, after which the records, for the preceding year, were read.

Upon balloting for a Standing Committee, it appeared that the following persons were chosen, viz.

  • Daniel L. Gibbens
  • John Hooper
  • John P. Bigelow
  • Samuel H. Babcock
  • Samuel L. Abbott
  • John Eliot Thayer
  • Benjamin B. Appleton
  • Joseph West
  • Samuel H. Rich

Upon balloting for a Treasurer and Collector, it appeared that Benjamin B. Appleton was chosen, and the oath of office was administered to him by the Clerk.

Upon balloting for a Committee of Finance, it appeared that Thomas B. Wales, John Eliot Thayer and John Hooper were chosen.

Previously to balloting for a Treasurer, the Committee on Finance, for the past year, presented the following report, which was read and accepted, viz.

The Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church on the examination of the Treasurer’s accounts and on the State of the finances of the Society, beg leave to report: that they have examined the Treas[149]urer’s accounts, and have found them duly entered, correctly cast, and properly vouched. The receipts since the last annual meeting, being for three quarters, here follow, viz.

For pew taxes

1542.48

For rents of houses etc.

1906.25

For taxes repaid by tenants

158.40

For so much received of Mr. Blake in part of repairs on house

374.73

$3981.86

The total amount received from the various sources is found to have been thirty nine hundred and eighty one dollars and 86/100.

The expenditures for the same time have been as follows, viz.

To the Reverend Pastor

1500.00

For music

664.65

For interest

400.25

For repairs on houses and church

1112.21

For taxes on houses

236.40

For sexton

75.00

For fuel, etc.

42.16

For insurance

72.80

For paid commission for collecting taxes

20.00

For printing sermons, etc.

40.71

For cleaning house, carpets, etc.

37.31

For cushions and linings, for society’s pews

17.42

For stove for school room

28.25

For wooden pavements

140.00

For City for drains, etc.

172.20

$4559.26

The total amount of expenditures, being forty-five hundred, and fifty nine dollars and 26/100, shews an excess of expenditures over the receipts, for three quarters, of five hundred and seventy seven dollars and 40/100, say $577.40, to which add the balance due the Treasurer on the last account $305.03, makes a balance due him of $878.73.

From the above statement it will appear that the income of the Society does not equal the expenditures, and the debt continues to increase and now amounts to $12,878.73.

All which is respectfully submitted by

Thomas B. Wales

Committee.

Samuel H. Rich

[150] On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was voted that the Treasurer be authorized to charge the Society with interest upon such amounts as he may have expended, as shall hereafter expend, in behalf of the Society, beyond the receipts on account of the same in his possession at the time of such expenditures.

Mr. Gibbens presented the following report, viz.

The Standing Committee, who were charged with the superintendance of the subscription in aid of the ministry at large, ask leave to report that “at the request of the Reverend Pastor, Mr. Thomas B. Wales, junior undertook the service of soliciting subscriptions from members of the First Church, in support of the ministry at large in this City, in January last, and that he has collected and paid over to Mr. Thomas Tarbell, Treasurer of the Boston fraternity of churches, three hundred and twenty two dollars in aid of that object.” The committee further report, that the same gentleman collected from members of the First Church, and paid over to the Treasurer of the Fraternity the sum of one hundred and nineteen dollars on the sixth day of April of the last year.

For the Committee,

Daniel L. Gibbens Chairman.

Boston, April 19, 1842.

The above report was accepted, and it was thereupon voted that the Standing Committee be charged with the duty of soliciting similar contributions from members of the Society for the year ensuing.

It was voted that the Standing Committee be authorized to appoint a Sexton, and fix his salary.

The following communication from the Pastor was presented and read, viz.

To the Standing Committee of the First Church

Boston, April 19, 1842.

Gentlemen,

I avail myself of the Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church, held this day, to make known to them, through you, my intention to resign to them the dwelling-house, that I have occupied for the last twenty seven years.

I am not led to take this step through any discontent with so desirable a residence—one that has been endeared to me [151] as a happy home for so long a period of time, and which a kind Providence, as I desire gratefully to acknowledge, has singularly exempted from sickness and death. But the comfortable accommodation of a pretty large family seems to require more room than it is able to afford us; and on that account I have thought best to return it to those whose property it is.

Though I cannot do this without some sensibility, I do it with the less reluctance, as I shall leave the premises in some respects much improved by having been in my hands; and also because I shall, thereby, as I suppose, be reducing my claim upon the funds of the Society. The house is likely to yield a much larger rent than I like to receive from their liberality. I shall give it up to the proprietors, without condition or reserve, as early in June as can be made practicable; leaving it entirely to them to commute it for such a settled sum per annum, as they may see fit to assign.

With great respect and regard

Your friend and servant

N. L. Frothingham.

This communication having been duly considered by the proprietors, it was voted, unanimously, that in consideration of the proposed relinquishment, the sum of six-hundred dollars per annum be allowed to the Pastor from and after the first day of July now next ensuing, in addition to his regular salary; and making, therewith, the sum of twenty-six hundred ($2600.) dollars, per annum, as the compensation for his services.

The Standing Committee were directed to communicate this vote to the Reverend Pastor.

The following report was read viz.

To the proprietors of the First Church

Your Committee to whom was referred the subject of placing a valuation on the pews in said Church, have attended to that service and ask leave to report, by offering a plan of the same, shewing the gross amount of $41,108, which at 6 percent gives about $2500 per annum, all of which is respectfully submitted in behalf of the Committee by

Samuel H. Babcock Chairman.

[152] The foregoing report and plan having been considered, it was voted that the same be recommitted to the Committee who made the report, with instructions to report an assessment to be laid upon the pews, in proportion to their relative values, the assessment to be sufficient to raise the sum of $3000 per annum and that they report at an adjourned meeting, to be held on Tuesday the 3d day of May, at 4o’clock, P.M. It was also voted that the rate of the assessment which the Committee shall propose to be laid upon the pews under this vote shall be printed, and a copy thereof shall be placed in the pew of each proprietor on Sunday the 1st day of May.

Adjourned to Tuesday, May 3, 4 P.M.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Church, April 23, 1842. Present all the members of the Committee.

Daniel L. Gibbens was chosen Chairman of the Committee, for the current parochial year.

Messrs. Appleton, Babcock and West were appointed sub-committee on repairs.

Messrs. Gibbens, Abbott, and Hooper were appointed sub-committee on Music.

Francis Dillaway was chosen Sexton, and his salary was fixed at $100; in full for all services in that capacity.

Messrs. John E. Thayer, S. H. Rich and Josiah P. Bradlee were chosen a committee to receive subscriptions in aid of the “fraternity of churches.”

Messrs. Thayer and Bigelow were requested to draft a letter to the Pastor communicating the vote of the proprietors in reference to compensation for relinquishing the parochial residence.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[153] A meeting of the Proprietors was held in the Church agreeably to adjournment on Tuesday May 3, 1842.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee communicated a copy of letter which the Committe had addressed to the Reverend Pastor, and the reply, which they had received, thereto. These documents were read to the meeting, and it was voted that they should be entered upon the records in full. They are as follow, viz.

Boston, April 25, 1842.

Rev. Dr. Frothingham

Dear Sir,

In behalf of the Proprietors of the First Church we acknowledge the reception of your communication, of the 19th instant, announcing your intention to relinquish the parish residence, now occupied by you, and proposing to accept, instead of the further use thereof, “such settled Sum per annum, as the proprietors might see fit to assign.” The communication has been taken into respectful deliberation by the Proprietors, and they have voted, unanimously, that in consideration of the proposed relinquishment, they will allow to you the sum of $600 per annum, from and after the first day of July now next ensuing. We have accordingly been directed to inform you of this vote, and to express the hope that it may meet with your acceptance and approbation. We avail ourselves of the occasion to tender to you renewed assurances of the continued affection and respect of the Society. We join in your gratitude to the Merciful Providence that has allowed your present residence to be “a happy home” to you for the long period which you designate; and that it has been “so singularly exempted from sickness and death.” Your gain in these things has also been ours; for it has been the means of enabling you to devote that constant and zealous attention to the spiritual welfare of your flock, with which they have been peculiarly favored. While for your sake and for theirs, we hope that peace may go with you to your new home, and that happiness may long continue beneath it’s roof, we [154] pray that when you shall be summoned to exchange the tabernacles of time for the mansions of eternity, you may receive a commutation for your loss, far different from the perishing treasures of earth which we now offer, in the rewards which neither moth nor rust can impair.

With sentiments of the most respectful regard, your friends and servants

Standing Committee.

  • Daniel L. Gibbens
  • S. H. Babcock
  • Samuel L. Abbott
  • John Hooper
  • John Eliot Thayer
  • Joseph West
  • S. H. Rich
  • Benjamin B. Appleton
  • John P. Bigelow

Boston, April 29, 1842.

To Daniel L. Gibbens, S. H. Babcock,

Samuel L. Abbott, John Hooper, John Eliot Thayer,

Joseph West, Samuel H. Rich, Benj. B. Appleton

and John P. Bigelow, Esquires, Standing Committee

of Proprietors of the First Church

Gentlemen

I have read with great sensibility the letter that you have done me the favor to address to me, in reply to my communication resigning the parish house. I beg you to accept my most cordial thanks for the very handsome and affectionate manner in which you have been pleased to express your personal regard for me and mine, and what you kindly consider to be the general sentiment in the Society towards me. Such an expression, I assure you, is more valuable to me than any increase of goods.

In respect to the sum of $600 per annum, which the Society have voted to grant me, in the place of the house which I give up, I beg leave to say that the smaller one of $500 would content my wishes better, and that I propose it instead of the sum they have so generously assigned.

With the truest respect and regard,

and the best wishes, I remain

your friend and servant

N. L. Frothingham.

[155] The meeting having considered the letter of the Pastor, it was Voted that the decision of the proprietors in reference to this subject, adopted on the 19th of April, be so far reconsidered as to fix the amount of compensation for the relinquishment of the parish residence at five hundred dollars per annum, and in accordance with this modification of the said previous decision, it was Voted that from and after the first day of the month of July, A.D. 1842, the amount of the compensation of the present Pastor (including the said $500) shall be twenty five hundred dollars per annum, payable quarter-yearly.

On motion of Mr. Joseph S. Buckingham, it was voted to reconsider the vote of the last meeting whereby the report and plan submitted by Mr. S. H. Babcock (for a committee) were recommitted, with certain instructions; and the question recurring upon said report and plan it was voted not to adopt the same.

On motion of Mr. Henry Cutter it was voted that [blank] be a committee to prepare and report to the society such a scheme of finance as will relieve the society from debt, and that the said committee enquire into the expediency of selling the whole or part of the real estate of the society, other than the church and the land immediately attached thereto. The Standing Committee having been directed to retire and select five names to fill the blank in the preceding vote, reported the names of Messrs. Thomas B. Wales, Ebenezer Chadwick, John T. Stevenson, Samuel Henshaw and Jonathan Preston and it was voted that these gentlemen do constitute the Committee.

Mr. James H. Paine (proxy for Elizabeth Paine and the heirs of Mary Clap) presented the following preamble and vote viz. Whereas by an Act of the Legislature passed in March, 1829, the proprietors of pews in the First Church were declared to be possessed and seized of all lands tenements and estates previously possessed and enjoyed by the proprietors of said Church or by the Deacons, or any other officers of the same; and whereas the said Proprietors have reason to believe that there are funds embraced in the provisions of said Act, of the amount, investment, in-[156]come and appropriation of which they are not sufficiently informed: therefore Voted that [blank] be a Committee to investigate this subject and report to the Proprietors a statement of the original amount of every donation or bequest to the Deacons, or any other officer of the Church or Society, the present amount of value of such donations or bequests, the manner in which they are invested, and such other suggestions as the Committee may think conducive to the security, increase, and usefulness of the several funds.

The foregoing preamble and vote were adopted and passed by the Proprietors, and it was further voted that the same gentlemen who have previously been appointed to prepare a scheme of finance do constitute the Committee.

Adjourned, sine die.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the residence of Mr. Gibbens, on the evening of May 11, 1842. Present Messrs. Gibbens, Babcock, Appleton, Hooper, Abbott, West, and Bigelow.

The chairman communicated a letter from Mr. Thomas B. Wales, in behalf of the special committee appointed at the recent meeting of the proprietors, asking the opinion of the Standing Committee upon the points contained in the following extracts from the letter, viz. “the present value of the four houses belonging to the Society; the amount of gross rent of the houses; the estimated amount of repairs which may be required this coming year, and for the year 1843”; “what amount may be proper to be expended on the exterior and interior of the Church for the year 1842, and for the year 1843; and whether any diminution may be expected in the expenditure for music or in any other department for 1842, or 1843”; “also whether the Standing Committee have any knowledge of the amount of the Church fund, from whom it came, or in whose charge it is now”?

To these enquiries the Standing Committee instructed the Clerk to return the following answers, viz.

We estimate the present value of the four houses on Summer Street to be $50,000. The annual aggregate [157] rent of three of the houses is $2150. The tenants pay the taxes on these houses and make the interior repairs, if any are required, at their own expense. We have reason to believe that the 4th house (parsonage) can be let on a long lease for as much as $700 per annum, without being put into repair by the Society. Unless it shall be decided to repair the parsonage house before leasing, we do not think that any expence need be incurred on account of repairs for any of the houses this year or next. We do not think that any repairs of consequence are absolutely required for the exterior or interior of the Church this year or next. We are however of opinion that if we were in sufficient funds, it would be highly desirable to lay out as much as $3000, forthwith, in repairing the building, inside and outside. We do not think that any essential reduction can be made, properly, in the expenditures for music, or in any other department during this year or the next. In reference to the question concerning the Church funds, we beg leave to say that we believe there are such funds in the hands of Deacon J. H. Foster, and respectfully refer the special committee to that gentleman, for more precise information on the subject, not doubting that he will readily exhibit a clear and satisfactory statement concerning the same.

Voted that the sub-committee on music be authorized to procure an examination of the organ by competent persons, and that they report what expense will be necessary for repairing the same.

Voted that the sub-committee on repairs enquire and report upon the expense of warming the Church by means of a furnace, and the expediency of doing so.

Voted that Messrs. Gibbens and Abbott enquire and report concerning the present state of repair of the Society’s tomb in the Chapel burying ground. (Vide Report on page 165.)4

The Clerk informed the Committee that he had communicated to the Pastor the vote passed at last meeting of the Proprietors, whereby they acquiesced in his wish that the commutation for his relinquishment of the parish residence should be fixed at a less sum than that which they had proposed.

Adjourned.

J. P. B., Clerk.

[158] The following is a copy of the letter of the Clerk to the Pastor communicating the vote of the Proprietors in reference to commutation and salary passed at the meeting held on May 3, 1842.

Boston, May 4, 1842.

Dear Sir,

The Proprietors of the First Church, at a meeting held on the third instant, have taken into consideration your communication of the twenty ninth ultimo, wherein you indicate a wish that the commutation for your relinquishment of the parish residence should be fixed at five hundred dollars, instead of six hundred dollars, per annum—the sum which the Proprietors had proposed for your acceptance—and they have modified their vote to correspond with your suggestion. I am accordingly directed to say that from and after the first day of July, now next ensuing, the amount of your annual compensation as Pastor of the First Church and Society, including the five hundred dollars to be allowed as aforesaid will be twenty five hundred dollars; payable quarter yearly.

Although the Society needs no evidence at this mature period of their connection with you, that, in all your relations to them, you ever act upon higher and better motives than those of temporal gain, yet they appreciate the delicacy of your conduct, on this occasion, as a characteristic token of that goodness of heart, which enhances the practical value of the eminent intellectual powers, with which it is so happily allied.

With sentiments of great personal regard and respect

Your friend and servant,

John Prescott Bigelow

Clerk of the Proprietors.

To Rev. Nathaniel Langdon Frothingham D.D.

The report concerning the finances, etc. (commencing on the next page) was printed before the meeting was held, and copies thereof were distributed in all the pews on Sunday morning, the 5th of June, together with the official notification of the meeting. The votes and schedule of taxes, reported by the Committee, were also printed with the report, and are on file.

[159] A meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Meeting-House on Tuesday, June 7, 1842.

Notices of the meeting, specifying the objects thereof, were placed in all the pews, on both the preceding Sundays, and notice of the time of holding the meeting was also given from the pulpit on both of those days.

Mr. Joseph T. Buckingham was chosen Moderator.

Mr. Thomas B. Wales, from a Committee, submitted the following report, viz.

The Committee, chosen on the 3d instant by the Proprietors of the First Church to prepare and report to the Society such scheme of Finance as will relieve the Society from debt; and to enquire into the expediency of selling the whole or a part of the Real Estate belonging to said Society, other than the Church, and land attached thereto, have attended that duty, and ask leave to report that they caused notes to be addressed to the Standing Committee and Treasurer, requesting information on the several subjects under their charge, and have the pleasure to acknowledge ready and valuable information from those officers.

Your Committee find, by examining the documents furnished, that the average annual expenditure, for the last three years, has amounted to over $5500; and the average income for the same time amounted to only $4400, leaving an annual deficit of about $1100. The debt has been increased in 14 years over $7700, which averages over $550 per annum. In pursuing the same management, as heretofore, your Committee can perceive no reason why the Society should not in future increase it’s debt at a rate exceeding $1000 per annum, and of course diminish the property to that amount annually. Your Committee estimate the expenditure for three years to come, including $500 annually for reimbursement of the debt, at a sum not less than $6100; the income for the same time not exceeding $5200, bearing an annual deficiency of $900, which, allowing for common contingencies, would require the highest rate of taxes proposed by your last committee on that subject. Therefore your Committee do not recommend the continuance of the present system, any further. Having abandoned the present system of finance, your Committee have considered it expedient to examine another mode of managing the affairs of the Society, namely, [160] that of selling the four dwelling-houses, paying the debts of the Society, repairing the Church, increasing the taxes moderately, and investing the balance in funds. To carry this system into operation, it is assumed by the Committee that the houses will sell for $48,000. Deducting $13000, the debts due, the balance will be $35000. Required for repairs $3000. Remaining for investment $32000. Your Committee further assume, that the sum to be invested will give for interest $1700; rent of school rooms and cellars $500; pew taxes including the proposed increase, in all $4600. The expenditure is estimated as follows—minister’s salary $2500; music $900; sexton $100; public taxes

$80; repairs $300; insurance $60; incidental charges, printing, collecting, fuel, etc. $260=total $4200. Leaving a surplus for a contingent fund of $400, annually.

There cannot be a doubt of it’s being bad policy for any corporation, especially a church, resorting to a permanent loan, when the income of that church nearly equals the minister’s salary. Besides the inconvenience of managing real estate by committees, it is sufficient for a Standing Committe of any Society to be charged with the management of the Church and Parish affairs. Another important reason for a change of system occurs to the Committee, namely, the result of all estimates, producing less income and greater expenditure, than are generally expected.

It would indeed be a great pleasure to your Committee to see the debts discharged and the real estate of the Society retained, but when they perceive the Society are un-willing to be taxed in a sum sufficient to pay $500 of the debts annually, they would deem it disrespectful to the Society to propose the payment of the whole debt by taxation. Therefore to relieve the Society from embarassment, save the property from total loss, and place the finances in an independent state, with an almost certain tendency to increase the contingent fund for the future use of the Society, your Committee beg leave to recommend the following annexed votes for the adoption of the Society.

All which is respectfully submitted by

Thomas B. Wales

Ebenezer Chadwick

J. Thomas Stevenson

Jonathan Preston

Samuel Henshaw.

Boston, May 27, 1842.

The report was accompanied by several votes, and a schedule of taxes, which the committee recommended for the adoption of the Society. The meeting voted to substitute a different schedule from that recommended by the Committee, and chose a committee to fill a blank left in the last [161] vote reported by the Committee. In all other respects the Meeting accepted the report and votes submitted by the Committee, the necessary verbal alterations excepted. The question upon the several votes was taken upon each vote separately.

The following are the votes and schedule of taxes as adopted by the Proprietors, viz.

  1. 1. Voted that the Treasurer of the Society be authorized and directed to assess a tax on the pews of the proprietors for the ensuing year, and annually until otherwise ordered, according to the annexed schedule, and collect the same for the use of the Society.
  2. 2. Voted that the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church be authorized and instructed to sell and dispose of the four houses belonging to said proprietors, in such way and manner as in their opinion may best subserve the interest of the Society.
  3. 3. Voted that the Standing Committee be directed to apply so much of the money, first received from the above sales, to the payment of the debts due from the Society, as will effect that object.
  4. 4. Voted that the Standing Committee be instructed to cause the Church to be repaired in such manner and to such extent, as in their judgment may be necessary for the permanent and proper convenience, protection, and respectability of the Church and Proprietors.
  5. 5. Voted that, when the sales of the houses shall be completed the Standing Committee be instructed to report the same to the Society, with their opinion of the best mode of investing the balance of the proceeds.
  6. 6. Voted that the Standing Committee be directed to invest any surplus funds which may from time to time come into the hands of the Treasurer or Committee, in such manner as they may deem safe and advantageous to the Society, for a contingent fund, for the use of the Society, and subject to the control of the Proprietors.
  7. 7. Voted that whenever the income of the Society fails to equal the the expenditure the Standing Committee be directed to cause the Treasurer to increase the rate of taxation, according to the proportions in the annexed schedule, to meet said deficiency.
  8. 8. Voted that Daniel Messenger, Daniel L. Gibbens and Benjamin B. Appleton be a Committee to convey said real estate, when sold, and that they be authorized and empowered to sign a deed or deeds of the same, in behalf of the Proprietors of the First Church, when requested so to do by the Standing Committee, and to affix the seal of the Corporation thereto.

[162] Schedule of quarterly taxes, to be assessed upon the pews. Adopted by the Proprietors, June 7, 1842, under the provisions of the first of the preceding votes, viz.

Pew New Nos Tax per quarter Old Nos New Nos

No. 2

1

$4.00

No. 49

43

7.00

No. 3

2

4.50

No. 50

44

6.50

No. 4

3

5.25

No. 51

45

6.50

No. 5

4

5.25

No. 52

46

6.00

No. 6

5

4.50

No. 53

47

5.50

No. 7

6

4.50

No. 54

48

4.75

No. 8

7

5.25

No. 55

49

4.50

No. 9

8

5.25

No. 56

50

4.25

No. 10

9

5.50

No. 59

51

4.25

No. 11

10

7.00

No. 60

52

4.50

No. 12

11

7.00

No. 61

53

4.75

No. 13

12

7.00

No. 62

54

5.50

No. 14

13

3.50

No. 63

55

6.00

No. 15

14

4.00

No. 64

56

6.50

No. 16

15

4.00

No. 65

57

6.50

No. 17

16

3.75

No. 66

58

7.00

No. 18

17

3.75

No. 67

59

7.00

No. 19

18

3.75

No. 68

60

7.00

No. 20

19

4.00

No. 69

61

7.00

No. 21

20

4.00

No. 70

62

7.00

No. 22

21

3.50

No. 71

63

7.00

No. 23

22

3.75

No. 72

64

7.00

No. 24

these Pews

3.75

No. 73

65

5.00

No. 25

were removed

3.75

No. 74

66

5.00

No. 26

in 1842

3.50

No. 75

67

5.00

No. 29

23

3.75

No. 76

68

4.50

No. 30

24

3.75

No. 77

69

5.00

No. 31

25

4.00

No. 78

70

5.00

No. 32

26

4.50

No. 79

71

5.00

No. 33

27

4.50

No. 80

72

4.50

No. 34

28

4.50

No. 81

73

4.50

No. 35

29

4.50

No. 82

74

4.50

No. 36

30

5.00

No. 83

75

4.50

No. 37

31

5.00

No. 84

76

4.00

No. 38

32

5.00

No. 85

77

3.75

No. 39

33

4.50

No. 86

78

3.75

No. 40

34

5.00

No. 90

removed5

3.75

No. 41

35

5.00

No. 91

removed6

3.75

No. 42

36

5.00

No. 92

79

3.75

No. 44

38

7.00

No. 93

80

3.50

No. 45

39

7.00

No. 94

81

4.00

No. 46

40

7.00

No. 95

82

4.00

No. 47

41

7.00

No. 96

83

3.75

No. 48

42

7.00

No. 97

84

3.75

No. 98

85

3.75

North Gallery

No. 99

86

4.00

No. 115

101

2.60

No. 100

87

4.00

No. 116

102

2.21

No. 101

88

3.50

No. 117

103

2.21

No. 102

89

7.00

No. 118

104

3.25

No. 103

90

7.00

No. 119

105

2.21

No. 104

91

7.00

No. 120

106

2.21

No. 105

92

5.50

No. 121

107

2.60

No. 106

93

5.25

No. 122

108

2.60

No. 107

94

5.25

No. 123

109

2.21

No. 108

95

4.50

No. 124

110

2.21

No. 109

96

4.50

No. 125

111

2.21

No. 110

97

5.25

No. 126

112

2.21

No. 111

98

5.25

No. 127

113

2.60

No. 112

99

4.50

No. 113

100

4.00

South Gallery

No. 142

122

2.21

No. 143

123

2.21

No. 144

124

2.60

No. 145

125

2.60

No. 146

126

2.21

No. 147

127

2.21

No. 148

128

2.21

No. 149

129

2.21

No. 150

130

2.60

No. 151

131

2.60

No. 152

132

2.21

No. 153

133

2.21

No. 154

134

3.25

Pews 1, 28, 57, 58, 87, and 114 have been removed. No. 43 is the minister’s pew, 27 and 88 lumber pews, 89 Strangers’ pew. Nos. 128 to 141, inclusive, are in the Eastern gallery, not taxed.

[163] On motion of Mr. Ebenezer Chadwick, it was Voted that the proportions, in the preceding schedule, be considered as indicating the relative value of the pews, for the purposes of taxation.

Mr. Thomas B. Wales presented the following report, viz.

The Committee to whom, on the 3d ultimo, was referred the vote concerning funds derived from donations and bequests, have attended to the duty, and ask leave to report a copy of a letter addressed to Deacon James H. Foster, requesting information on the Subject, and his reply … Which are respectfully submitted by order of the Committee.

Boston, June 7, 1842. Tho. B. Wales Chairman.

Boston, May 7, 1842.

Deacon James H. Foster

Dear Sir

You will learn from the vote of the proprietors of the First Church, annexed, that a duty has devolved on a Committee which cannot be satisfactorily performed without essential aid from you…. The Committee therefore take leave to ask the favor of you to furnish them the source or sources from whence the funds, referred to, have been created, the dates of the donations, the amount of each, the present amount, including accumulation, the investments as now existing, the general use made of the income, and under whose management the funds now are.

The Committee will be obliged by any explanation, advice, or observations, Deacon Foster may please to communicate.

Very respectfully, for the Committee,

Tho. B. Wales.

Boston, May 17, 1842.

Thomas B. Wales, Esq.

Dear Sir,

With the request you made for me to furnish the Committee with information of the amount of funds, etc. as an officer of the First Church, you gave a copy of the vote passed at a meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church held May 3, 1842, under which you make the application. Said vote is introduced with extracts from our Act of Incorporation. In referring to said Act of Incorporation, I find these words, viz. “with power to take purchase and hold any estate real, personal, or mixed, for the support of the ministry, and the suitable maintenance of the Public Worship of God.” The subscriber would respectfully reply to your [164] enquiries that the funds in his hands, as an officer of the First Church, are for pious and charitable purposes, and as such, are not under the supervision of the Proprietors of the First Church.

With esteem

Your friend

James H. Foster.

The preceding report and letters having been read and some verbal statements, concerning the funds in question, having been made by Mr. Wales and Deacon Foster, it was voted that the further consideration of the subject be laid upon the table.

Adjourned, sine die.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the residence of the Chairman, on Thursday evening, June 9, 1842. Present, Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Appleton, Mr. Hooper, Mr. West, and Mr. Bigelow.

After authorizing the Chairman to procure a ground plan of the houses and lands belonging to the Society, and adopting some measures having reference to the contemplated sale of the dwelling-houses, the Committee adjourned to meet at the Church on Monday the 13th of June at 5 o’clock, where and when the Committee met accordingly—Present the same members as above with the addition of Mr. Babcock and Mr. Abbott. After fixing a value upon the several houses, Mr. Gibbens and Mr. Appleton were appointed a sub-committee to advertise and contract to sell them at the prices fixed.

Adjourned.

J.P.B. Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the Church after divine service in the morning of Sunday, June 19, 1842. Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Appleton, Mr. Hooper, Mr. Abbott, Mr. West, Mr. Bigelow.

The Minister, also being present, communicated a letter from a person belonging to Bremen, requesting that a contribution may be taken in the Church on the next Sunday for the benefit of the sufferers by the recent great conflagration of Hamburgh in Europe.

Voted that it is inexpedient to comply with the request.

Adjourned.

J.P.B. Clerk.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Church, Monday morning, July 4, 1842. Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Appleton, Mr. Thayer, Mr. West and Mr. Bigelow.

Mr. Gibbens and Mr. Appleton reported that, thus far, they had not been able to find purchasers for the houses at the prices fixed. Mr. Thayer was then authorized to offer No. 43, to certain individuals at a certain fixed price. (No. 43, is the late parsonage house.)

The Treasurer was authorized to procure a duplicate key for the door of the Church.

The Chairman communicated a letter from Mr. Babcock resigning his place as member of the Standing Committee.

Adjourned.

J.P.B. Clerk.

[165] A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Church, Tuesday afternoon, July 12, 1842. Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Hooper, Mr. Abbott, Mr. West, Mr. Thayer, Mr. Rich, Mr. Bigelow.

Mr. Thayer reported that he had not been able to obtain a purchaser for House, No. 43, at the price fixed.

It appearing that there are about two hundred copies, in sheets, of the Christian Psalter remaining on the hands of the Society, out of five hundred which were printed on account thereof, and that about $100. (balance) is due for printing the same, the Treasurer was directed to pay the amount so due, and Mr. Hooper was authorized to cause fifty copies of the Psalter to be bound for the purpose of supplying such members of the Society, as may desire to purchase.

Messrs. Gibbens and Abbott (see record of May 11) made a verbal report concerning the Society’s tomb in the Chapel Burial Ground. They had experience some difficulty in finding it’s location. It’s entrance was found to be about [blank] feet from the front wall of the Ground, and about [blank] feet from the wall of the Savings’ Bank. The only monument, which could have been intended to indicate it’s location, is a rude grave stone, some 8 or 10 feet from it’s mouth. The tomb was found to be in the most perfect condition, containing the remains of a number of the former pastors of the Church and three or four children. The coffin containing the remains of the Rev. William Emerson was [166] identified by an inscription upon one of it’s plates. Mr. Emerson is supposed to have been the last individual interred in the tomb (viz. in 1811); his successor (Mr. Abbott) having been buried at Andover. The Committee recommended the erection of a suitable monument, with inscriptions, etc., over the tomb. The consideration of this proposition was postponed.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

The Standing Committee were notified to meet at the Church August 1, 1842. (Monday) Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Abbot, Mr. Hooper and Mr. Bigelow. Not a quorum.

Mr. Gibbens stated that the sub-committee had not as yet been able to sell any of the houses at the prices fixed, whereupon the sub-committee were requested to advertise them again, and in additional papers, and to employ a broker to dispose of them, if they saw fit.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

The Standing Committee met the Church on Tuesday, September 20, in the afternoon. Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Appleton, Mr. Hooper, Mr. Abbot, Mr. West, Mr. Thayer and Mr. Bigelow.

The Chairman communicated a request in behalf of the Sunday Schools, of all the Churches in the City, that the first bells of this as well, as of the other Churches, shall be rung at an hour and a quarter previous to the second bells, instead of one hour as at present. Agreed to, on condition that the bells of all the other Churches be rung in like manner, in regard to time.

Voted that the Clerk do notify a meeting of the Proprietors to be holden in the Church on Monday the 26th instant, at 4 P.M., to consider and decide upon the expediency of warming the building by means of furnaces.

Mr. Gibbens states that the sub-committee had not as yet been able to obtain purchasers of any of the houses, at satisfactory prices.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[167] A meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held on the afternoon of Monday the 26th of September, in the Church—agreeably to notices left in the pews on the day previous.

Joseph T. Buckingham was chosen Moderator. The Chairman of the S.C. having stated that the meeting was called for the purpose of deciding upon the expediency of warming the building by means of furnaces, the question upon that subject was put, whereupon it was voted, by a large majority, that it is inexpedient, at the present, so to do.

Mr. J. T. Stevenson moved that the Standing Committee be requested to cause the interior of the Church to be painted and repaired the present autumn. Negatived.

Adjourned.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

The Standing Committee met in the Church after the morning service, Sunday, October 9, 1842. Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Appleton, Mr. Hooper, Mr. Abbot, Mr. West, Mr. Bigelow.

The Chairman communicated a circular from certain individuals, in behalf of the Massachusetts Bible Society, requesting aid to enable them to furnish bibles, with raised letters, for the Blind; also a letter from the Unitarian Society in Sharon asking aid for the construction of a new meetinghouse. These documents were read and ordered to lie on the table.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

The Standing Committee met in the house recently occupied by the Pastor on Tuesday afternoon, October 11, 1842. Present Mr. Gibbens, Mr. Appleton, Mr. Hooper, Mr. Abbot, Mr. West, Mr. Bigelow.

The Chairman stated that the sub-Committee had been offered $13000 for the house in which the Committee were now assembled, specifying certain terms of payment. The sub Committee were authorized to accept the offer—the sale to be with certain restrictions heretofore agreed upon by the Committee.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[168] A meeting of the Standing Committee was notified for Wednesday the 19th of October, at the house recently occupied by the Pastor. Present Messrs. Gibbens, Abbot and Hooper—adjourned to same place, next day Thursday, when were present Messrs. Gibbens, Appleton, Hooper, Abbot and West.

Voted that the sub committee on the sale of the Houses (Messrs. Gibbens and Appleton) be authorized to sell as follows, viz. the house No. 37 Summer St. at $11500; No. 39 at $11750; No. 41 at $13000. A contract for the sale of No. 43. was already made agreeably to vote of the last meeting of the committee (see last page). The Committee at the meeting of June 9, had severally valued the houses as follows viz. No. 37—$12,000.—No. 39—$13,000. No. 41—$14000 No. 43—$15000. This valuation was however reconsidered on June 13, and the asking prices fixed for the several houses at $14000, $15000, $16000, and $17000 in the order of the several numbers. The sub committee had not received any offers at these prices, nor indeed at those of June 9th.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Pursuant to a notice from the desk by the Rev. Pastor a meeting of the Congregation was held after the morning service on Sunday, December 18, 1842 to consider and act upon a communication from a committee appointed by a meeting of Unitarians, of which Rev. S. K. Lothrop was the Chairman, soliciting aid for domestic missionary purposes. The Rev. Pastor was appointed Moderator.

On motion of Mr. J. T. Stevenson, voted unanimously, that it is inexpedient to take any steps as a Society in view of the Communication in question, but as individuals we will appoint a Committee to collect such sums as may be subscribed in furtherance of the objects embraced in that communication.

Messrs. Stevenson and Gibbens were appointed the Committee under this vote and the meeting was dissolved.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[169] The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Church on Tuesday, April 18, 1843 in the afternoon Daniel Messenger in the Chair, the meeting being opened with prayer by the Rev. Pastor.

The records of the preceding year were read, by the Clerk.

Mr. Gibbens in behalf of the Standing Committee submitted the following report viz.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church ask leave to report: that agreeably to a vote of the Society passed on the 7th day of June last, instructing them “to sell and dispose of the four houses belonging to the Proprietors in such way and manner as in their opinion may best subserve the interests of the Society,” they caused the same to be advertised a number of weeks in several of the public papers, and made personal exertions to accomplish the proposed object, and they also employed Mr. Cutter a member of the Society, as a real estate broker to aid them in the matter. But owing to the unusual pressure of the times, the extreme reluctance of Capitalists and others to engage in any new enterprise and the additional circumstance of a very large quantity of valuable land in the vicinity being thrown into the market at the same time, they were unable to negotiate a sale on such terms as would be satisfactory to themselves or to the Society. A great obstacle to the sale of the three western houses was the circumstance of their being leased for two or more years to the present occupants,—applicants generally desiring to have immediate possession. The Committee however feel less regret at their failure to dispose of these houses as they are now yielding a satisfactory income and as the time for which they are now leased is wearing away, they have no doubt a sale may be effected in the course of the ensuing summer or more favorable terms than any which have been offered.

The Committee further report that after several months had elapsed and every effort to dispose of the parsonage had failed they made a thorough examination of the building and found that in order to let it to a respectable private family it would require extensive repairs involving an outlay of more than a thousand [170] dollars, an expenditure which the state of the treasury did not seem to justify. They therefore reluctantly permitted it to remain vacant until October when they disposed of that estate to Mr. John Redman for the sum of thirteen thousand dollars upon condition that he shall enjoy the same right in Chauncy-place as was granted to Mr. G. F. Thayer for the lot purchased by him of the proprietors, and also a right of way in the passage in the rear of the estate to the width of six feet. And it is provided that no building fence or other obstruction to light or air shall ever be erected by him or his successors within twenty feet of the back line of the estate of a greater height than the shed now standing thereon. Nor shall any vault be placed within fifteen feet of the said line and no building shall ever be erected on the back line except such as may be wanted for the use of the dwelling-house.

One thousand dollars of the purchase money was paid on the delivery of the deed, and that sum was immediately applied to the extinguishment of so much of the debt of the Society. Two thousand more are to be paid within two years, and that sum with the interest semiannually, at six per cent, is secured by a mortgage with such conditions as will render the Society secure from loss in any event. The residue, or ten thousand dollars, is to be paid in ten years, with interest semiannually, and is secured by a mortgage in the usual form, with the policy made payable to the Society in case of loss by fire. By this state—it will be perceived that the Society is now receiving for this whole demand an annual income of six per cent while for a considerable portion of their liabilities they are paying a less rate of interest: and the Committee are informed that an advantageous exchange may be made at any time when the proprietors shall so direct by which the whole debt of the Society may be paid and a small balance remain in the Treasury. But the Committee forbear to enlarge upon this subject, which belongs more properly to the Committee who have the financial concerns of the Society in charge.

The Committee further report that they have omitted to make any considerable repairs in the Church during the past year, because they understood the prevailing sentiment in the Society to be adverse to the expenditure of a large sum for that purpose unless the Committee should succeed in disposing of the greater part of the real estate.

For the Committee

D. L. Gibbens, Chairman.

Chauncy Place, April 18, 1843.

This Report was accepted.

[171] The Committee of the First Church charged with the examination of the Treasurer’s accounts and the finances of the Society beg leave to report that they have examined the Treasurer’s accounts, have found them correctly cast and the payments properly vouched, and have certified the same on his book.

The receipts since the last annual meeting have been as follows viz.

From pew taxes

$1623.04

Rents of houses etc.

2611.64

Taxes repaid by tenants

150.00

So much received in part payment of house sold Mr. Redman

1000.00

$5384.68

The expenditures for the past year have been as follows, viz.

Paid salary of the Rev. Pastor (rate of 2500 since 1st July first payment on new rate made Oct. 1.)

2250.00

Music

862.00

Interest on notes

670.00

Taxes

224.00

Repairs of Church and houses

225.00

Sexton

105.00

Fuel

35.00

Insurance against fire

78.00

Commission for collecting taxes

37.00

Commission paid on sale of house

130.00

Paid for printing and stationery

40.00

Paid for stove for school room

16.00

Paid Sundry small bills

133.00

Paid P. C. Brooks, Esq. on note

1000.00

$5805.17

The above payments exhibit an excess of expenditure over receipts of $420.49—to which add balance due the Treasurer last year of $878.73 and we find the balance due him on the 1st instant to be $1299.22. This balance with the Society’s notes severally for $8000, $2000, and $1000 makes the indebtedness of the Society amount to $12,299.22.

One thousand dollars have been received from the sale of the house during the last year and a like sum has been paid to Mr. Brooks: And so far we find the expenditures exceed the income of the Society—however there remain about three hundred dollars of taxes uncollected and interest accumulated on note and mortgage which exceed the deficiency. So that the balance of taxes and notes and mortgage may be presumed to equal the debts due from the Society.

The Committee beg leave to recommend the following votes: viz.

First, that the Standing Committee be directed to examine and adjust the account [172] of interest due the Treasurer and order the same to be paid. Second, that the Standing Committee be directed to cause the interior of the Church to be repaired at an expense not exceeding five thousand dollars. Third, that the Standing Committee continue their exertions to make sale of the remaining houses.

Respectfully submitted

Tho. B. Wales

Committee.

John Hooper

Boston, April 15, 1843.

John Eliot Thayer

This report was accepted and the votes adopted, after being amended to read as above.

Messrs. T. B. Wales jr., J. T. Dingley and [blank] Prince were appointed a Committee to collect and declare the votes for officers for the year ensuing, and the following was the result, viz.

Clerk

  • John P. Bigelow

Standing Committee

  • Daniel L. Gibbens
  • Benjamin B. Appleton
  • John Hooper
  • John Eliot Thayer
  • John P. Bigelow
  • Samuel Henshaw
  • Jonathan Preston
  • Samuel Bradlee
  • John Thomas Stevenson

Treasurer

  • Benjamin B. Appleton

Committee of Finance

  • Thomas B. Wales
  • John Eliot Thayer
  • John Hooper

The oath of office was administered to the Clerk by Mr. Gibbens, a Justice of the Peace, and to the Treasurer by the Clerk.

Voted that the Standing Committee be authorized to appoint a Sexton, and fix his salary.

Voted that the Treasurer be directed to make sale of any pews belonging to proprietors, upon [173] which the taxes shall not have been within one year previous to such sale—reasonable notice first being given to the owners of such pews.

The following document was presented by Mr. Gibbens and it was ordered to be entered upon the records, viz.

At a meeting of the worshippers in this Church held in the early part of the last winter the undersigned were appointed a Committee to collect subscriptions for domestic missionary and other religious purposes, and although it was not intended to be an act of the Society in it’s corporate capacity, yet this Committee think there is a propriety in entering the result of their endeavor upon the Records, and ask leave to report that they have attended to the duty assigned them and have collected the sum of two hundred and seventy seven dollars which they have paid over to Stephen Fairbanks, Esq. the Chairman of the soliciting committee appointed by the Executive Board for domestic missionary and other purposes.

Respectfully submitted by

Committee.

Daniel L. Gibbens

Chauncy Place April 18, 1843.

J. Thomas Stevenson

Adjourned, sine die.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

April 24, 1843. A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the Church in the afternoon. Present all but Mr. Thayer.

Daniel L. Gibbens was chosen Chairman, for the ensuing year.

Francis Dillaway was reappointed sexton and his salary fixed at $100.

Mr. Bradlee and Mr. Hooper were appointed a Committee to audit and adjust the interest account of the Treasurer, agreeably to a vote passed at the annual meeting.

Messrs. Stevenson and Hooper were appointed [174] a Committee to receive subscriptions in aid of the Fraternity of Churches.

Messrs. Henshaw and Thayer were appointed a Committee to make sale of the remaining dwelling-houses.

Messrs. Gibbens, Hooper and Bigelow were appointed a Committee to superintend the organ and choir.

Messrs. Appleton, Stevenson and Thayer were appointed a Committee upon repairs etc. of dwellinghouses.

Messrs. Henshaw, Preston, Hooper, Bradlee and Stevenson were appointed a Committee to report a plan of repairing the Church, agreeably to a vote passed at the Annual Meeting.

A communication from the wardens of King’s Chapel in behalf of the Society there worshipping, addressed to the Rev. Dr. Frothingham requesting him to officiate in their pulpit (their Pastor, Dr. Greenwood, being out of health) and our Society to worship with theirs during the contemplated repairs of our Church, was read and thereupon it was voted that in the opinion of the Standing Committee it is advisable to accept the proffered invitation, and that the subject should be laid before the Congregation after the morning service on the next Sunday, for their decision.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Sunday, April 30, 1843.

Agreeably to request of the Standing Committee the Congregation remained in Church after the morning worship was concluded—the Rev. Pastor presiding. The Clerk of the Proprietors read the communication (referred to above) from the Wardens of King’s Chapel—whereupon it was voted unanimously that the Congregation do accept the invitation and that the Minister be requested to return an answer accordingly, the acceptance to take effect on and Meet the second Sunday in June.

Meeting dissolved.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

By direction of the Standing Committee the invitation and answer are entered on the records viz.

Letter from the Wardens of King’s Chapel to the Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

April 24, 1843.

Rev. and Dear Sir,

The Proprietors of King’s Chapel having learned that the Society to whom you minister in holy things are about to close their [175] house of worship for the purpose of causing it to be repaired are desirous of expressing to you and them the sympathy in the faith and the Gospel which is becoming in brethren who dwell together in unity. They have therefore directed us by a vote passed at their Easter meeting, yesterday, to invite you to occupy the desk which is vacant by reason of the lamented illness of our beloved pastor, and them to assemble with us, and listening to the instructions of their own spiritual guide, to unite with us in the services of the sanctuary, till their house shall again be ready to receive them. We are authorized and instructed to express the pleasure it will give to our Society both to listen to your ministrations and to worship with your people, and nothing can afford us more gratification than that you and they should accept the offer we now make of our church and our pulpit as long as it shall be agreeable and convenient to you both. We pray you to communicate with your Society on the subject, and to express to them our hope that this proposal may be acceptable, and our Christian sympathy in feeling as in faith.

Your friends and brethren

Samuel A. Eliot

Wardens.

George B. Emerson

Reply of the Rev. Dr. Frothingham:

Boston, May 1, 1843.

To the Hon. Samuel A. Eliot and George B. Emerson, Esq. Wardens of King’s Chapel.

Gentlemen,

Your very friendly and gratifying communication to the worshippers at the First Church, in the name of the Society at King’s Chapel, inviting them to seats in your Church while their own is closed for repairs, and inviting me to occupy your pulpit during that time was laid before them at a special meeting held yesterday immediately after divine service. They voted not only unanimously, but with great sensibility, to accept the invitation that you have tendered to them in such obliging terms. They have directed me to offer their reply; reciprocating the feelings of Christian sympathy and brotherhood that you have been pleased to express and communicating their grateful sense of the favour done them—Allow me to say on my own part that it will give me a cordial satisfaction to stand in your desk and assume the charge, as well as I am able of the united congregations; as a free will offering of the interest I feel in both. And I pray that this temporary union may be the means of permanently strengthening the bond of Christian fellowship already existing between our churches—the ministers of which have from their early years, been closely attached to one another. The Committee of the First Church have fixed the time for commencing repairs, immediately after the first Sunday in June. I shall then probably desire the recreation of a journey, after so many months of steady ministerial service. But on the first Sunday in July, at furthest, if Providence permit, I shall become responsible for the supply of your pulpit until my own is ready for me. Have the goodness to communicate this our acceptance to the Society of King’s Chapel, in such way as you see fit, and believe me, gentlemen,

with the highest regard

very sincerely yours

N. L. Frothingham.

[176] Wednesday, May 17, 1843. The Standing Committee met in the Exchange Hotel at 11 A.M. Present all but Mr. Hooper.

The sub Committee, upon repairs of the Church, submitted a plan and estimates prepared by Isaiah Rogers, and after consideration thereof, it was voted unanimously that the plan at an expense not exceeding $10,000 be recommended to the consideration of the proprietors, at their meeting which is to be held on the 18th instant.

Voted that the use of the Church be granted to the Historical Society for their meeting on the 25th instant (the address to be by John Quincy Adams).

Voted that the use of the Church be granted to the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company for the first Monday in June.

The sub Committee on Music (Choir) were authorized to allow Miss Stone, the female singer, at the rate of $250 per annum if they should see fit, (the present rate being $220).

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Thursday, May 18, 1843.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors was held in the Church, in the afternoon, agreeably to printed notices placed in the pews on the preceding Sunday, “to decide upon a plan for repairing and altering the building” viz. the Meeting-house.

Present thirty eight proprietors and many proxies. Mr. Rogers, the architect, was also present, and explained the plans he had drawn in pursuance of the directions of the Standing Committee.

Mr. Joseph T. Buckingham was chosen Moderator.

After the subject had been fully discussed the following votes proposed by Mr. William Hayden and seconded by Mr. Charles Sprague were unanimously adopted, viz.

Voted that the plans for altering the Church, proposed by Mr. Rogers be and the same are hereby adopted, with the exception of the substitution of a new pulpit for the present one: That the Standing Committee of the Proprietors be authorized and appointed to carry the same into effect, and to make the necessary contracts and agreements: That a sum not exceeding ten thousand dollars, be and the same hereby [177] is appropriated to carry this project into execution: That the Standing Committee be authorized if they deem it expedient to carry the plans into complete operation to remove the present pulpit and to erect a new one in it’s stead; and to discontinue the upper and lower windows.

Meeting dissolved.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

Monday, May 22, 1843. The Standing Committee met in the forenoon in the Merchants’ Exchange Hotel, all present.

After some discussion upon the plans, they adjourned to Tuesday, May 23, 1843, P.M. in the same place, all present.

The Treasurer was directed to notify the tenants, keeping schools in the basement of the Church, of the intended repairs; in order that the schools should be dismissed or removed until there should be no danger of injury to the children from the falling of materials, etc.

Messrs. Henshaw, Preston, Hooper, Bradlee and Stevenson were appointed a sub-committee to make contract and to carry into effect the plans of repairing and altering the Church, with the following provisos viz. the pillars supporting the galleries not to be removed, the pews to be painted so as to resemble maple, a recess, or niche, to be formed in, or through, the wall behind the pulpit so as to admit of moving it back, the pulpit not to be essentially altered, all the upper windows to be closed up, the lower windows not to be closed up, without further decision of the Standing Committee, the outside of the Church to be re-painted, furnaces to be erected for warming the building.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

The Society commenced worshipping with the Society of King’s Chapel on Sunday June 11, 1843 the repairs and alterations of the Church having been commenced during the preceding week. They continued to worship at King’s Chapel untill Sunday, the 26th of November, when they returned to Chauncy Place. (See page 175.)

[178] Friday, July 7, 1843. A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Merchant’s Exchange, all present excepting Messrs. Hooper and Stevenson.

The building Committee were authorized to sell the organ whenever they shall have obtained $2000 by subscription for a new one, and to appropriate the whole proceeds of organ and subscription to the purchase of a new one.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Wednesday, July 28, 1843. The Standing Committee met at the Church. Present all excepting Mr. Bigelow.

Voted that the architect, Mr. Rogers, who has charge of the alterations of the Church, be directed to remove the lower windows of the Church, and fill up their spaces with bricks and mortar, also to lengthen the windows in the school rooms under the Church, also to furnish a new marble tablet to be placed over the front door with proper inscriptions.

The Treasurer was authorized to borrow $5000 towards paying the expenses of the alterations at such times as the sub-committee may want the money.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Wednesday, August 2, 1843. The Standing Committee met at the Church. Present all but Mr. Gibbens. Mr. Stevenson chosen Chairman pro-tem.

The Committee on the alterations were authorized to heighten all the School rooms by removing a part of the ceiling.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[179] Saturday, October 5, 1843. The Standing Committee met at the Church. Present all but Mr. Thayer and Mr. Bigelow.

Communication from the German Lutheran Church of Boston soliciting pecuniary assistance for the erection of their edifice—read and laid on the table.

A note from the Rev. Dr. Lowell enclosing a vote of thanks for the use of the Church by the Massachusetts Historical Society on the 25th of May—read and ordered on file.

Mr. Gibbens was requested to confer with residents in Rowe Street and relative to putting up an iron-fence at the head of Chauncy Place, a conference having been solicited.

The Committee on alterations of the Church reported that their labors were nearly completed and that the building would soon be ready for it’s furniture—whereupon Messrs. Gibbens, Hooper and Appleton were authorized to procure new carpets and all necessary furniture for the Church.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Monday, October 21, 1843. The Standing Committee met at the Church. All present but Messrs. Stevenson and Preston.

Mr. Appleton was authorized to settle in full with Deacon Foster for one of his pews, removed in consequence of the alterations.

Mr. Bigelow and Mr. Bradlee were authorized to arrange concerning the accommodation of the female orphans again in the Church when the repairs shall be completed.

A communication having been received and read from William Parker and others resident in Rowe Street and vicinity requesting that an iron fence may be put up at the head of Chauncy Place and offering to contribute in “a small degree” towards the same, it was voted that it is inexpedient for the Society to incurr any expense for the purpose, but that the memorialists be authorized to put the fence at their own expense, with two openings through it, one at each end.

Voted that The pews in the galleries belonging to the Society be lined. Mr. Hooper was authorized to exchange his present pew for No. 2. (the first on the left of the Minister.)

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[180] The Society returned to their place of Worship on Sunday November 26th, the alterations having been nearly completed. The Society had worshipped from the second Sunday of June (inclusive) with that of King’s Chapel, agreeably to invitation (see page 175). The old organ had in the mean time been replaced by a new one, for which the maker (Appleton) had received $2000 raised by subscription and the old one (valued at $1500). The old organ was built in England, and cost about $3000 and was first used in the Church June 30, 1816. (See page 21.)

Thursday, December 7, 1843. The Standing Committee met in the Church. All present but Mr. Stevenson.

Voted that all the pews in the Gallery belonging to the Society be valued at $125 each—the two on the broad aisle at $200 each, and the two on the North side aisle (body pews) at $175 each, at that the Treasurer sell them at auction on the 26th instant—sale to be in the House—at 11 A.M.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

Tuesday, December 26, 1843. The Standing Committee met in the Church. Present Messrs. Gibbens, Hooper, Appleton, Bradlee and Bigelow.

Mr. Hooper was requested to provide from time to time the stationery which may be necessary for the use of the Society on the Standing Committee.

The Treasurer was requested to provide four keys to the door of the Church, one for the Pastor, one for the Chairman, one for the Treasurer, and one for the Sexton.

The pew occupied by Miss Frothingham to be sold to Mr. T. B. Wales for $125. (in the north Gallery), and the Sunday School Rooms to be properly fitted up.

Mr. Bigelow, from a Committee, reported that the female orphans were well accommodated with seats at the Rev. Mr. Young’s7 and that it was agreeable to the feelings and convenience of all parties that they should remain there.

A correspondence between the pastor and the Wardens of King’s Chapel was communicated and ordered to be recorded (see next page).

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[181] Saturday, February 24, 1844. The Standing Committee met in the Church. Present all the Committee.

Mr. Thomas Dwight authorized to change his pew for one of the front Gallery, pews next the organ.

It was moved that measures be taken to remove the pigeons from the tower and exclude them, on account of the great and inconvenient accumulation of dirt—referred to next meeting.

Mr. Henshaw authorized to purchase some border glasses for the roof (extra).

Mr. G. B. Blake authorized to give up the lease of his house at the present quarter, leaving all his additions and improvements, or may lease (under) to a respectable private family.

The Committee on the Alterations of the Church authorized to make openings in the walls for the purpose of letting in more light under the galleries.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

The following is the correspondence between the Pastor of the First Church and the Wardens of King’s Chapel (referred to at the bottom of the last page).

Letter from Dr. Frothingham to the Wardens and Vestry of King’s Chapel.

Boston, November 9, 1843.

Christian Friends,

It has become my duty to give you notice, that the Society of First Church propose to return to their house of worship on Sunday the 26th instant. My responsibility, therefore at the Chapel will cease after two Sundays more. We have been your guests much longer than we expected to be. But I will hope that our stay with you has not been wholly without advantage, as I am sure it has been with great satisfaction to myself.

Allow me to present acknowledgments to you, in the name of our Congregation, for the uniform attention that has been shown to them as fellow-worshippers at the Chapel. Let me thank you, especially for the kind manner in which such service as I have been able to render has been received among you. It is kindness, which I shall always cherish in grateful remembrance.

It is my devout and very earnest wish, that the place of your lamented pastor may soon be supplied with some one, who may have much of his [182] ability and excellence, and more years to serve you than it pleased Providence to allot to him.8

With great respect and affectionate regard I remain faithfully yours,

N. L. Frothingham.

Letter from the Wardens of King’s Chapel to Dr. Frothingham.

Boston, November 13, 1843.

Rev. and Dear Sir

The Wardens and Vestry of King’s Chapel have received your letter communicating the expectation of your Society to return to their own place of worship on the 26th inst. and we cannot suffer the occasion to pass without expressing our regret at losing the friendly countenances and valuable aid we have enjoyed so long.

It has been particularly grateful to us that our desk should have been filled by one who so well understood and valued our late pastor, and who so highly esteems our peculiar form of worship as yourself; and while we offer you our hearty thanks for all your kind labors among us, our memory loves especially to dwell on your just tribute to him, and your faithful performance of every office of friendship both to him and to us. It will not soon fade from our recollection, and we pray that as your labors have been abundant, so may your reward be, and much more also.

It would have been difficult for us to have found, in any Society, a greater number of personal friends than in your’s, and while our communion has been in all things pleasant to us, we will trust that it has been acceptable to them; and may you and they long continue to enjoy and reciprocate those kind and sacred affections which spring from the relation of minister and people.

In behalf of the Vestry and Proprietors of King’s Chapel, we are with the sincerest esteem, your friends,

Samuel A. Eliot

Wardens.

George B. Emerson

Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

Wednesday, April 10, 1844. The Standing Committee met at Mr. Henshaw’s Office, all present excepting Messrs. Thayer and Preston.

Mr. Henshaw in behalf of the sub-Committee on the alterations of the Church submitted the following reports, viz.

The sub-committee appointed by the Standing Committee of the First Church [183] on the 23d of May last to carry into effect the plan for altering the Church having finished their labors, report that in conformity to instructions from the Standing Committee they made a contract with Isaiah Rogers to repair the Church according to a plan approved by the Committee, at a cost not to exceed ten thousand dollars, which sum has been paid to Mr. Rogers. The original plan did not contemplate the alterations of the pews, or the painting of the interior of the Church in Fresco, both of which the Committee authorized at an expense of $400 41/100, when it was supposed the entire cost would not reach $10,000. The Committee deem it but justice to Mr. Rogers to state, that he has done the work to their satisfaction, although not with as much promptness as they expected, and that he has voluntarily incurred large outlays, not contemplated in the plan, in order to give permanency to the work. Mr. Rogers has submitted the bills, which are herewith, for the repairs, by which it appears that the entire cost under his contract amounts to $10,910 63/100, an estimate of the value of the old materials amounting to $232 22/100, leaving a loss to him, without any pay for his services, of 678 41/100 which sum your committee hope the Standing Committee will recommend the Society to reimburse to Mr. Rogers.

Per order of the Sub Committee,

Boston, April 6, 1844. Samuel Henshaw Chairman.

This report having been considered, it was voted that the same be accepted by the Standing Committee, and that a recommendation concerning the allowance to Mr. Rogers be made to the Proprietors accordingly—Mr. Gibbens dissenting from accepting the report and the recommendation, and desiring that his dissent should be entered on the records.

Mr. Gibbens reported, verbally, that the expenses for new furniture, including gallery curtains, carpeting, pew linings (for pews belonging to Church), etc., amounted to about $816 which he would specify in detail in the annual report, which report he was requested to draw up in behalf of the Standing Committee. Mr. Gibbens also stated that the sexton had a bill of about $300 against the Society for carpentry, and other extra work done in this and preceding years, the consideration of which was for the present postponed.

Adj.

J. P. B. Clerk.

[184] The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Church on Tuesday the 16th day of April A.D. 1844 in the afternoon, Joseph T. Buckingham in the Chair.

Prayers having been offered by the Rev. Pastor, the records of the last Annual Meeting were read by the Clerk.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee not being present and being prevented by severe illness from preparing a written report of the doings of that Committee for the last year, the Clerk made a verbal report in his behalf. He stated the Standing Committee in fulfillment of the instructions of the proprietors (on the 18th of May last) had carried into effect the plans for repairing and altering the Church, with such variations and modifications as seemed expedient and desirable for the more perfect accomplishment of the intentions of the proprietors, that the whole cost of the alterations and repairs (deducting the value of the removed materials) have amounted $10,678 41/100; that the cost of newly carpeting the house together with new lining, curtains, pulpit and communion furniture etc. amounted to $816.97; that the Committee had procured a new organ, for which they had given $2000 and the old organ (valued at $1500); that the Committee had sold another of the houses belonging to the Society being No 39 on Summer Street of which Mr. A. C. Hersey was the purchaser for the sum of $11,750; and that as the cost of repairing and altering the Church exceeded by 678 41/100 the sum appropriated by the proprietors and the contract of Mr. Rogers the architect, yet as the Committee were satisfied that that amount had actually been expended (see report on preceding page) they recommend that said sum be allowed to Mr. Rogers by the Society in addition to the $10,000 allowed to him by his contract. The cost of repairing and altering the school rooms etc. under the Church is not included in the above but is contained in the Treasurer’s statement (see next page).

The preceding report of the Standing Committee, as made by the Clerk, was accepted without debate, or division.

Mr. Wales submitted the following report, viz.

The undersigned, a committee of the First Church charged with the examination of the Treasurer’s accounts for the past year, have attended that duty, and beg leave to report, that they have found the columns of his book correctly added, and the account of expenditures correctly cast and properly vouched, and a balance $1514 51/100, remaining in his hands at the disposal of the Society. The committee herewith annex the Treasurer’s statement of items, composing the receipts and expenditures of the Society for the past year. Respectfully submitted,

Thomas B. Wales

Committee.

John Hooper

Boston, April 15, 1844.

John Eliot Thayer

[185] The report of the committee was accepted.

The following is the statement of the Treasurer (Mr. B. B. Appleton) referred to in the preceding report, viz.

The Treasurer of the First Church submits a general view of the finances by means of the following report.

Received for taxes on pews

$2048.02

Rents of 3 houses

1975.00

Rents of school rooms and cellar

374.72

Received of A. C. Hersey for House

11,750.00

Received of John Redman, interest

685.00

Received taxes repaid by tenants

163.60

Received interest of Hersey

55.00

Received for Redman’s note

2,000.00

Received for 7 pews, sale of,

915.00

Received for an old chair

8.00

making the receipts

$19,974.34

The Treasurer has made payments as follows.

Salary of the Pastor

$2500.00

Music

808.58

Interest

744.34

Sexton’s salary

105.00

Taxes on houses

182.28

Commission on collection

45.74

Insurance

66.00

Fuel

70.29

Repairs on the Church and houses

983.97

Contract

10.000.00

Chauncy Hall School, Chauncy Place, circa 1835

Paid note P. C. Brooks

1,000.00

New furniture, Lawson and Harrington, and Kittredge

226.56

Convention dinner

9.50

Recording deeds and Paine’s bill

11.75

Mats

17.80

Bayley for marble etc.

49.50

Bacall and Woodward, pews etc.

197.43

Balance due the Treasurer on last account

1299.21

18,317.95

Sundries

142.88

$18,460.83

John P. Bigelow gave notice that he must decline being a candidate for Clerk or Member of the Standing Committee for the ensuing year, and tendered his respectful thanks to the Society for the confidence which they had reposed in him.

Messrs. Samuel Frothingham, jr. and S. L. Abbot were appointed a committee to collect and declare the votes for the officers and committees for the ensuing year, it having been first voted that the Standing Committee for the year shall consist of seven members.

The following was declared and accepted as the result of the several ballots: viz.

[186] Clerk

  • J. Thomas Stevenson

Standing Committee

  • Samuel Henshaw
  • Samuel Bradlee
  • J. Thomas Stevenson
  • John Eliot Thayer
  • John Hooper
  • Joseph West
  • Samuel Frothingham jr.

Treasurer

  • John Hooper

Committee of Finance

  • William B. Fowle
  • Joshua Crane
  • William Hayden

It was voted, that the thanks of the Society be tendered to Benjamin B. Appleton, and John P. Bigelow for their faithful discharge of their respective duties as Treasurer and Clerk.

It was voted that the thanks of the Society be tendered to the Standing Committee for the past year for their services.

It was voted that the Standing Committee be authorized and directed to instruct the Treasurer to pay to Mr. Isaiah Rogers such amount as they shall deem just and proper in consequence of of loss sustained by him under his contract for repairing and altering the Church.

It was voted that the Standing Committee be authorized to equalize the taxes upon such pews as have been deprived of one or more seats in consequence of the late alterations in the Church.

It was voted that the Standing Committee be requested to employ a collector to call upon the members of the Society for such contributions as they may be pleased to make to the Benevolent Fraternity of Churches.

It was voted that the Standing Committee be authorized to appoint a Sexton and fix his compensation.

The oath of office was administered to the Clerk elect by Mr. Bigelow and to the Treasurer elect by Mr. C. C. Paine.

Adjourned, sine die,

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

[187] April 19, 1844. The Standing Committee met at Mr. Henshaw’s Office—present Messrs. Henshaw, Bradlee, Hooper and Stevenson.

Mr. Samuel Henshaw was unanimously chosen Chairman of the Standing Committee.

Voted That Messrs. Henshaw, Bradlee and Hooper be Committee on Repairs for the current year.

Voted That Messrs. Hooper and Frothingham be Committee on Music for the current year.

Voted That Messrs. Henshaw, Thayer and West be a Committee to make settlement of account of Mr. Isaiah Rogers in accordance with vote of the Proprietors.

Voted That Mr. Appleton be requested to complete the deeds of pews bearing date April 1st and deliver the same to their respective owners.

Voted That Messrs. Thayer and Stevenson be Committee to settle the accounts of the late Treasurer.

Voted That the Chairman of the Committee be authorized to settle with J. H. Foster Esq. in regard to removal of his pew No. 26 (old number).

Voted That Messrs. Henshaw and West be a Committee upon the appointment and duties of a Sexton.

Adjourned.

J. Thomas Stevenson Clerk.

May 20, 1844.

The Standing Committee met at Mr. Henshaw’s Office. The following application for the use of the Church and the following Remonstrance against the same were submitted.

To the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church Gentlemen,

The undersigned, a Committee appointed by the Ancient and Honorable [188] Artillery Company to secure a House of Worship for the customary religious services appertaining to the Anniversary of the Corps, Respectfully ask your consent that such an appropriation of the Church in Chauncy Place on the first Monday of the ensuing month.

Your Obedient Servants

(Signed)

James Phillips

Daniel Messinger

Boston, May 15, 1844.

Daniel L. Gibbens

The Remonstrance of sundry Proprietors are ordered to be put on file and it was Voted That the Clerk be directed to inform the Committee of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, that the objections which have been made to the desired use of the Church, by a large number of the Proprietors, render it the duty of this Committee to suggest to the applicants the hope that they will find it convenient to secure some other place for their services, but that, if such place cannot be obtained without serious inconvenience to the Company, the Committee will, notwithstanding the Remonstrance referred to, appropriate the Church as requested.

Voted That the Committee appointed at the last meeting to define the duties of Sexton be authorized to appoint that officer for the current year and to fix his salary.

Adjourned.

J. Thomas Stevenson Clerk.

[189] December 26, 1844. The Standing Committee met at the house of the Chairman. Present, Messrs. Henshaw, Bradlee, Thayer, Frothingham, Hooper, and Stevenson.

The following communication from the managers of the Boston Female Asylum was ordered to be entered upon the records.

Voted That the Bill of Mr. Dillaway, referred to on Page 183 of these records, be referred to Messrs. Bradlee and Hooper for adjustment, with authority to settle the same.

Voted That the Treasurer be directed to pay the Bill of Mr. Brigaldi (two hundred dollars) for extra painting, and the Bill of Mr. Sherman (two hundred 41/100 dollars) for altering pews.

Voted That the Treasurer be authorized to settle with the Proprietor of Pew No 35 for the unpaid taxes thereon, on the best terms in his power.

Communication Female Asylum.

At a meeting of the Managers of the Boston Female Asylum held on Tuesday, September 24, 1844.

Voted That remembering at this annual meeting the circumstances which have, during the past year, withdrawn their orphan family from attendance at the Chauncy Place Church, the members of this Board feel that they have a long standing debt of gratitude to acknowledge to the Society worshipping in that place, for the liberal accommodation, first generously offered, and which was for Twenty four years accorded to them. For this and [190] for the unceasing kindness of the Minister of the First Church, his ready and most acceptable services on all the many occasions, for which they have been needed, the Managers of the Asylum feel that they can very inadequately express those thanks which, in behalf of the Society and the Orphans protected by it, they would most cordially offer.

By Order

(signed) Abby L. Wales Secretary.

Adjourned.

J. Thomas Stevenson Clerk.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Church on Tuesday the 15th of April A.D. 1845, in the afternoon, Joseph T. Buckingham in the Chair.

The meeting was opened with prayer by the Reverend Pastor of the Society after which John P. Bigelow was chosen Clerk pro. tem. (Mr. Stevenson being absent) and read the records of the last year.

The Committee on Finance submitted their annual report which was accepted and it was ordered that two hundred copies thereof and of their report for the preceding year be printed for the use of the Proprietors. (Report recorded below.)

Mr. Henshaw from the Standing Committee submitted a report which was laid on the table and ordered to be printed for the use of the Proprietors (See page 192 for Report).

The meeting proceeded to the Choice of Officers for the ensuing Church year and made choice as follows viz.

Clerk

  • John Prescott Bigelow

Standing Committee

  • Samuel Henshaw
  • John Hooper
  • John Eliot Thayer
  • John Prescott Bigelow
  • Joseph West
  • Joshua Thomas Stevenson
  • Samuel Frothingham, jr.

[191] Treasurer

  • John Hooper

Committee on Finance

  • J. Putnam Bradlee
  • George W. Wales
  • Christopher C. Chadwick

Mr. Stevenson, having declined reelection as Clerk, and Mr. S. Bradlee as a Member of the Standing Committee, the thanks of the meeting were voted, unanimously, for the services of those gentlemen in those capacities for the past year.

The Standing Committee were authorized to appoint a sexton and fix his compensation for the year ensuing.

On motion of Mr. Henshaw it was voted that the authority heretofore given to the collector to allow five per cent discount on taxes paid in advance be rescinded, and that the taxes be collected semiannually on the 1st of April and October.

Voted that the Clerk be directed to tender to the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company the use of the Church for the customary religious services at their approaching anniversary. (This was accordingly done, and the offer accepted.)

Adjourned sine die.

John Prescott Bigelow Clerk.

(The following is referred to on the last page.)

The Committee of finance report: that they have examined the Treasurer’s accounts and find them correctly cast and properly vouched. The receipts into the Treasury since the last annual report have been as follows—Cash received from Executors of the late Treasurer $1736 88/100, rents of two houses $1450 do. school rooms $495, do. cellar, $100 taxes on pews 1268 98/100, rent of pews $172 77/100, interest more than paid $50—total receipts $5273 63/100; payments, salary of Pastor $2500, do. sexton $105, Music $847 25/100 taxes more than received $18, Insurance, fuel and other incidental expenses $222 29/100, repairs on Church and school rooms (made in the previous year) including carpets $1150 50/100, hymn books $14 41/100 for bills long outstanding $151 18/100—total payments $5008 92/100—leaving a balance in the hands of the Treasurer of $264 92/100 = $5273 63/100. It appears from the Treasurer’s Books that the Society owes notes to the amount of $10,000 payable January 1st 1846 with interest at 5½ per cent,—to meet which the Treasurer holds a note, secured by mortgage against John Redman for a like sum payable in 8 years with interest at 6 per cent. The Society also owes $400 41/100 for fresco painting and altering pews when the Church was undergoing repairs, and Mr. Dillaway claims about $300 for work done some years previous to the last. The Committee understand that all expenses incurred during the last year have been paid and charged in the Treasurer’s accounts. The property of the Society after appropriating the note referred to above to pay the one due consists of two dwelling houses valued at $25,000, three pews on the lower floor and 22 in the gallery all which (except 6 pews in the gallery and two for strangers) are leased, producing (the pews) $172 77/100 per annum.

Respectfully submitted by

April 15, 1846. Joshua Crane for the Committee.

For report of Standing Committee see next page.

[192] Monday, April 21, 1845. The Standing Committee met at Mr. Henshaw’s Office.

Messrs. Henshaw Hooper and West were appointed a subcommittee upon the repairs etc. of the Real Estate.

Messrs. Hooper Bigelow and Frothingham were appointed a subcommittee on the Choir and Music.

Voted that the Treasurer be directed to sell the pews whereon the taxes have not been paid within the last twelve months—unless payment of the same shall be duly made, on or before the 1st day of July next.

Adjourned.

J. P. B. Clerk.

The following is the Report of the Standing Committee referred to on page 190, viz.

The Standing Committee of the First Church being desirous of exhibiting to the Society the true state of it’s pecuniary affairs, and the expediency of a moderate increase of taxes on pews so that a small amount may annually be reserved for a contingent fund to meet extraordinary expenses without further encroachment upon the capital of the Society—have examined the receipts and expenditures for the fourteen years preceding the renovation of their place of worship in 1843 and ask leave to report as follows viz. During that period the receipts were:

Rents of houses

$24,865.42

averaging

$1776.10

per annum

do. of schoolrooms

6,291.65

averaging

449.40

per annum

Taxes and rent of pews

23,209.40

averaging

1657.82

per annum

Total receipts from the above

$54,366.55

averaging

$3883.32

per annum

The disbursements during that period were:

Salary of the Pastor (in addition to rent of house)

$22,928.12

averaging

1637.72

per annum

do. of Sexton

1,572.50

averaging

112.32

per annum

For organist and choir

11,429.76

averaging

816.41

per annum

Incidental expenses

5,309.99

averaging

379.28

per annum

Interest

7,881.73

averaging

562.98

per annum

Repairs on Church and houses

15,961.75

averaging

1140.12

per annum

Total disbursements

65,083.85

averaging

4648.43

per annum

By which it appears that the disbursements during said period have exceed the regular income of the Society by the sum of $10717.30, the excess averaging $765.51 per annum.

The Committee learns from the records that in 1807 the Society owed $11,500 (contracted in erecting their Church and dwelling [193] houses) and that this debt was gradually increased until in 1829 when it amounted to $13,639. Since that period the Society has received:

for land sold to Mr. G. F. Thayer

$6819.55

for pews sold

1240.00

for House sold to John Redman

13000.00

for House sold to A. C. Hersey

11750.00

$32809.55

The whole of which sum has been expended (or is appropriated) for the liquidation of the debt owed in 1829 and the expenses beyond the income, since incurred. This result indicates the expediency of increasing the taxes on pews to an amount which will cover the ordinary charges of each year, and leave an annual balance to meet extraordinary expenditures which are sure to become necessary every few years. The taxes now assessed upon the pews were fixed previous to the late extensive repairs. They operate in a slight degree unequally and there is no authority to assess the new pews in the Gallery. The taxes now assessed amount to only $180 54/100 annually more than they did when the Church was first built. The debts of the Society being now liquidated (or provided for) the Committee are anxious to preserve it’s remaining property and for this purpose recommend a revision and an increase of the taxes on pews, so as to produce a sum which in connection with the income of said property be sufficient to the current expenses and to provide the annual sum of [blank] dollars to form a contingent fund to defray extraordinary expenses. They also recommend the sale of the dwelling houses at or before the expiration of the leases thereof as may be deemed expedient.

Per order

April 15, 1845. Samuel Henshaw Chairman.

[194] [Blank page]

[195] The Annual meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Church on Tuesday the 21st day of April A.D. 1846, Daniel L. Gibbens, Esq., in the chair.

Prayers having been offered by the Reverend Pastor, the records of the last annual meeting were read by the clerk.

The Committee of Finance submitted the following statement of the condition of the Treasury, which was read and accepted, viz.

Dr Proprietors of First Church in a/c with Treasurer Cr

1845 and 1846

To Pastor’s Salary

$2500.00

1845 April

By Balance of account

$264.92

Expenses of Choir

967.83

Rents of Houses and Cellar

1587.50

Sexton’s Salary

105.00

Repairs

153.55

1st

Rents of School Room

522.50

Fuel and incidental Expenses

234.43

Taxes on Pews

2336.81

Taxes

18.00

Balance of Int a/c

50.00

Insurance

96.00

1846

Bryant and Herman’s bill 1842–3

55.73

March

31

Balance to New a/c

631.19

$4761.73

$4761.73

April 1

By Balance

$631.19

Boston, March 31, 1846.

Errors Excepted.

(Signed) John Hooper Treasurer.

The Finance Committee charged with the examination of the accounts of the Treasurer have attended to their duty and find the accounts of the Treasurer for the past year correct and properly vouched.

Christopher C. Chadwick.

(Signed) J. P. Bradlee.

Boston, April 20, 1846.

Mr. Bigelow gave notice that he should decline being a candidate for the office of clerk or member of the standing committee for the year ensuing.

The meeting proceeded to the choice of officers for the ensuing year, and the following was the result of the several ballotings.

Clerk

  • Reverend Charles Brooks

[196] Standing Committee

  • Samuel Henshaw
  • John Hooper
  • Samuel Frothingham Jr.
  • Charles Brooks
  • John E. Thayer
  • Joseph West
  • J. Thomas Stevenson

Treasurer

  • John Hooper

Committee of Finance

  • George W. Wales
  • C. C. Chadwick
  • E. F. Weld

The standing committee of the Proprietors of the First Church report that agreeably to a vote of the Society passed the 7th June 1842 instructing the standing committee to dispose of the houses belonging to the Proprietors, they have sold, subject however to the Approval of the Society, house No. 41 Summer Street now occupied by Mr. Blake, to Dr. Charles G. Putnam for the sum of $ 15,000 to be conveyed under the same conditions and restrictions as regards buildings that may be hereafter erected by the purchaser or future owners, as were contained in the deeds given to the buyers of the houses already sold by the Society. The report of the Committee on Finance and the Treasurer’s account will show the receipts and disbursements for account of the Society during the last year. Your Committee understand that there are no outstanding claims against the Society for expenses incurred the last year; but that the balance now in the hands of the Treasurer will be required to meet the claims against the Society alluded to in the last annual report of your Committee.

Agreeably to a vote of the Proprietors, the Standing Committee has recently caused the reports of the Committee on Finance for the years 1844 and 1845, and of the Standing Committee for 1845, to be printed and distributed. In the last named report your Committee ventured to recommend a revision and increase of Taxes on Pews so as to produce a sum, which, with the income on the property of the Society would be sufficient to pay the current expenses and provide, annually, a sum sufficient to defray extraordinary expenses. Your Committee recommend a small increase of Taxes under the impression that every member of the Society would gladly pay his fair proportion of expenses and thereby prevent any farther encroachments upon the permanent fund and they cannot but hope that the Proprietors will authorize an increase of about 10 percent (or $200) on the present Taxes, which is deemed sufficient for the object in view.

per order

Boston, April 21, 1846. Samuel Henshaw Chairman

Standing Committtee.

[197] Voted that the thanks of the proprietors be tendered to the Hon. John P. Bigelow for the faithful manner in which he has discharged the duties of Clerk and member of the Standing Committee.

Mr. Bigelow briefly responded to the vote.

Whereas the Standing Committee having reported a sale of house No. 41 Summer Street, now occupied by Mr. G. B. Blake, to Dr. Charles G. Putnam for the sum of $15,000 dollars, subject to the approval of the Society.

Voted that said sale be confirmed and that Messrs. Thomas B. Wales and Daniel L. Gibbens be authorized to convey said premises, in behalf of the proprietors of the First Church to the purchaser, under the same restrictions and conditions as regards buildings to be erected and rights of way, as were inserted in the deeds conveying the estates sold to Mr. Redman and Mr. Hersey and to affix the seal of the Corporation.

Voted that the Standing Committee be authorized to loan to Doctor Putnam, on the estate sold to him, any amount of money and on such terms and conditions as they may deem safe and that they be directed to invest any balance growing out of the sale of said estate in such securities as they may deem expedient.

Voted that the Standing Committee, or their successors be authorized and requested to sell the estate No. 37 Summer Street, whenever they may deem it for the interest of the Society and that the Committee appointed to convey the estate sold to Doctor Putnam be authorized to convey said estate under the direction of Standing Committee, whenever requested.

Voted on motion of Mr. Wales: that the Standing Committee be instructed to furnish the Proprietors at the next meeting with a new tariff of taxes so as to increase the amount of taxes by the sum of $200 annually.

The vote of thanks to the Clerk, and the subsequent items are copied, from the minutes of Mr. J. Thomas Stevenson, who officiated as Clerk pro tem. during the latter part of the meeting.

Attest.

John P. Bigelow Clerk.

[198] Boston, April 28, 1846. The Standing Committee met in the Church. Samuel Henshaw Esq. was chosen Chairman.

Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper were chosen the Committee on Repairs.

Messrs. West, Hooper and Henshaw were chosen the Committee on Music.

Messrs. Hooper and West were chosen the Committee to procure a Sexton.

Messrs. Henshaw and Thayer were chosen a Committee to invest the proceeds of the sale of the houses belonging to the Society.

The Clerk was requested to notify the Sexton to remove the pigeons from the belfrey.

Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper were appointed a Committee to make a new valuation of the pews and present a new tariff of taxes upon them.

Adjourned

Charles Brooks Clerk.

April 13, 1847. The Standing Committee met at Mr. Henshaw’s Office.

Mr. Henshaw presented a statement of the financial concerns of the Society, and the new tariff of taxes on the pews—whereupon it was voted That the Chairman present the new tariff of taxes on the pews which has been prepared.

The required oath was administered to the Clerk by J. Thomas Stevenson Esq.

Adjourned. C. Brooks Clerk.

[199] The annual meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Church April 13, 1847. The meeting was organised by the choice of Col. D. L. Gibbens as Moderator.

After prayers by the Rev. Pastor, the records of the last year’s meeting were read.

The Standing Committee presented the following Report.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church report, that they have sold since the last annual meeting, House No 37 Summer St. to Mrs. Davis for the sum of $14,000—which has been conveyed to her by the Committee appointed for that purpose.

Agreeably to a vote of the Society the Standing Committee has made a new tariff of taxes, which is submitted to the proprietors for their consideration. In performing this duty the Committee has not added a regular percentage to the taxes heretofore levied, because it seemed to them, that since the alteration of the Church the taxes have operated somewhat unequally. The result of the proposed Tariff is, that the Proprietors are assessed only $155.08, annually, more than they have been; which additional sum the Committee deem sufficient, if the receipts for rents of the Rooms and Cellar under the Church continue to be as large as they have been, and the interest on the permanent fund be not lessened.

By reference to the Treasurer’s account, which has been examined and approved by the Committee on Finance, it will be seen that his receipts the past year for rents, interests and taxes on pews amount to $4466.71, which, with the ballance in his hands ($631.19) at the last annual meeting has all been disbursed (except $58.87) in liquidating the current expenses of the past year, amounting to $4083.66 and in paying $955.37 for debts previously incurred.

The Committee take great satisfaction in stating that there are no outstanding Bills against the Society, and that the only claims against it are a Note to Dea. Foster for 2000 dollars, and one of 8,000 to Mr. James Parker, both on interest at 5½ percent; while the Society holds notes on interest at 6 percent payable semi-annually [200] and secured by mortgages against the late Mr. Redman for

$10,000

Doct. Putnam

11,000

Mrs. Davis

10,000

Bonds of Conn. River Rail Road for

4,000

40 shares of Merchant’s Bank for

4,000

39,000

leaving a permanent fund (after paying all claims) of $29,000.

Per Order,

Samuel Henshaw Chairman of the Standing Committee.

Boston, April 13, 1847.

The above report was accepted.

The abstract of the Treasurer’s account not having been presented the following report of the Auditors was unanimously accepted.

Boston, April 13, 1847.

The Committee charged with the examination of the Treasurer’s Accounts have attended to that duty and found them properly vouched and correctly cast.

Christopher C. Chadwick

Com. of Finance.

Edward F. Weld

Voted To proceed to the choice of officers for the ensuing year and the following were the results. For

Clerk

  • Charles Brooks

Standing Committee

  • Samuel Henshaw
  • John Hooper
  • John E. Thayer
  • Joseph West
  • J. Thomas Stevenson
  • Samuel Frothingham Jr.
  • Charles Brooks

Treasurer

  • John Hooper

[201] Committee of Finance

  • George W. Wales
  • Christopher C. Chadwick
  • Edward F. Weld

Hon. J. P. Bigelow offered the following order, which was unanimously adopted.

Ordered That the Standing Committee be authorized to take such measures as they may see fit in regard to opening a new passage-way from Chauncy Place to Bedford Place, with full power in the premises.

T. B. Wales Esq. offered the following resolution; which was adopted:

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint a person to collect subscriptions from those members of the Society, who may be disposed to contribute in aid of the Fraternity of Churches, and place the same in the hands of the Treasurer, who will deliver the amount, so collected, to the Treasurer of said Fraternity.

T. B. Wales Esq. offered the following resolution, which was adopted:

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint three members of the Society, who shall have the entire management of the Musical Department. But it will be understood that the Standing Committee are to controul the expenditure of money for that purpose, not exceeding One thousand dollars.

[202] The Standing Committee who were instructed, at the last meeting, to furnish a new tariff of taxes on the pews, attended to that duty, and through two of their number, Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper, submitted the following—as Tax for quarter.

Present Tax Professed Tax

$4.00—

No. 1—

$5.00

4.50—

2—

5.00

4.50—

3—

5.00

4.50—

4—

5.00

4.50—

5—

5.00

4.50—

6—

5.00

5.25—

7—

5.00

5.25—

8—

5.00

5.50—

9—

6.50

7.00—

10—

7.00

7.00—

11—

7.00

7.00—

12—

7.00

3.50—

13—

3.50

4.00—

14—

4.50

4.00—

15—

4.50

3.75—

16—

4.00

3.75—

17—

4.00

3.75—

18—

4.00

4.00—

19—

4.00

4.00—

20—

3.50

3.50—

21—

3.50

3.50—

22—

3.50

3.75—

23—

4.00

4.00—

24—

4.00

4.00—

25—

4.50

4.50—

26—

5.00

4.50—

27—

5.00

4.50—

28—

5.00

4.50—

29—

5.00

5.00—

30—

5.50

5.00—

31—

5.50

5.00—

32—

5.50

4.50—

33—

5.00

5.00—

34—

5.50

5.00—

35—

5.50

5.00—

36—

5.50

Pastor—

37—

Pastor

7.00—

38—

7.50

7.00—

39—

7.50

7.00—

40—

7.50

7.00—

41—

7.50

7.00—

42—

7.50

7.00—

43—

7.50

6.50—

44—

7.00

6.50—

No. 45—

7.00

6.00—

46—

6.50

5.50—

47—

6.00

5.50—

48—

5.50

4.50—

49—

5.00

4.50—

50—

5.00

4.50—

51—

5.00

4.50—

52—

5.00

5.50—

53—

5.50

5.50—

54—

6.00

6.00—

55—

6.50

6.50—

56—

7.00

6.50—

57—

7.00

7.00—

58—

7.50

7.00—

59—

7.50

7.00—

60—

7.50

7.00—

61—

7.50

7.00—

62—

7.50

7.00—

63—

7.50

7.00—

64—

7.50

5.00—

65—

5.50

5.00—

66—

5.50

5.00—

67—

5.50

4.50—

68—

5.50

5.00—

69—

5.50

5.00—

70—

5.50

5.00—

71—

5.50

4.50—

72—

5.00

4.50—

73—

5.00

4.50—

74—

5.00

4.50—

75—

5.00

4.00—

76—

4.50

4.00—

77—

4.00

3.75—

78—

4.00

3.75—

79—

3.50

3.50—

80—

3.50

4.00—

81—

4.00

4.00—

82—

4.00

3.75—

83—

4.00

3.75—

84—

4.00

3.75—

85—

4.00

4.00—

86—

4.50

4.00—

87—

4.50

3.50—

88—

3.50

7.00—

89—

7.00

7.00—

No. 90—

7.00

7.00—

91—

7.00

5.50—

92—

6.50

5.25—

93—

5.00

5.25—

94—

5.00

4.50—

95—

5.00

4.50—

96—

5.00

5.25—

97—

5.00

5.25—

98—

5.00

4.50—

99—

5.00

4.00—

100—

5.00

2.60

101—

3.00

2.21—

102—

2.50

2.21—

103—

2.50

2.21—

104—

2.50

2.21—

105—

2.50

2.21—

106—

2.50

2.21—

107—

3.00

2.60—

108—

3.00

2.21—

109—

2.50

2.21—

110—

2.50

2.60—

111—

3.00

2.21—

112—

2.50

2.21—

113—

2.50

2.21—

114—

2.50

2.21—

115—

2.50

2.60—

116—

3.00

3.25—

117—

3.00

3.25—

118—

3.00

2.60—

119—

3.00

2.21—

120—

2.50

2.21—

121—

2.50

2.21—

122—

2.50

2.21—

123—

2.50

2.60—

124—

3.00

2.60—

125—

3.00

2.21—

126—

2.50

2.21—

127—

2.50

2.21—

128—

2.50

2.21—

129—

2.50

2.60—

130—

3.00

2.60—

131—

3.00

2.21—

132—

2.50

2.21—

133—

2.50

2.21—

134—

2.50

[203] The new Tariff, as proposed by the Committee was approved and adopted by a unanimous vote.

Adjourned.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

Boston, April 16, 1847. The Standing Committee met at Mr. Henshaw’s Office, for organization and business. Samuel Henshaw was chosen Chairman.

The following Committees were raised and votes passed.

Voted that Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper be the Committee on Repairs.

Voted That the appointment of a Committee on Music from the Society at large, be referred to Mr. West, with full powers.

Voted That Messrs. Hooper and West be the Committee to procure a Sexton.

Voted That Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper be the Committee, with full powers, to open a foot-path from Chauncy Place to Bedford Place, by the removal of the brick wall to the width of the side-walk, on the land belonging to the Society.

Adjourned.

Attest—Charles Brooks Clerk.

[204] It having been suggested that the various subscriptions, for the purchase of the New Organ, in 1843 should be recorded, they are accordingly subjoined, with the words of the compact prefixed.

“We, the undersigned, worshippers at the Chauncy Place Church, being aware how much a new Organ is needed by the Society, agree to contribute the sum set against our names respectively towards the purchase of such new instrument as the Committee may select.

Boston, June 12, 1843.

P. C. Brooks

$300.

G. J. Van Brunt

$20.

Thomas B. Wales

200

John F. Loring

30

Josiah Bradlee

200

Benj. B. Appleton

20

Mary Bradlee

200

Isaac Parker

20

John Elliot Thayer

150

Samuel Bradlee

25

James Davis Sr.

50

George Bancroft

20

P. C. Brooks Jun.

50

Charles F. Adams

25

N. L. Frothingham

100

Edward Austin

25

T. G. Joy

50

Jonathan Preston

20

A. Joy

50

Sidney B. Morse

20

William H. Prescott

50

Otis Rich

20

Samuel Henshaw

50

J. T. H. Sargent

20

John Hooper

25

T. B. Wales Jr.

20

J. Thomas Stevenson

25

Moses Everett

20

James West

20

David Francis

10

William Hayden

20

Edward F. Weld

10

Charles Sprague

20

D. L. Gibbens

10

Samuel Frothingham Jr.

20

Rebecca B. Bradlee

20

E. Richardson

20

Miss Huse

10

James B. Richardson

25

M. M. Hunt

10

1625

375

1625

Total—2000.”

True copy from the original subscription-papers.

Attest—Charles Brooks Clerk.

[205] At a special meeting of the Executive Committee of the First Parish, at Mr. Henshaw’s Office, May 22, 1847.

It was Voted That to accept the verbal report made by Mr. West, on the subject of Music. Whereupon it was

Voted That Messrs. Thomas Gray, William J. Loring and J. T. W. Sargent be a Committee on Music to execute the purposes of the vote, on that subject, passed at the last annual meeting of the society.

It having been desired by the city government that all persons interested should show cause why the brick wall running across Chauncy Place should not be removed and the street made a public highway, the Executive Committee of the First Church Voted That Messrs. Stevenson and Thayer be a Committee with full powers to do all that is necessary to prevent the removal of said wall.

Meeting dissolved.

C. Brooks Clerk.

[206] The annual meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church” was held in the Church on Tuesday 4 O’clock P.M. April 11, 1848. The meeting was organized by the choice of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham as Moderator.

Prayers were offered by the Rev. Pastor, and then the Proprietors listened to the Report of the Standing Committee which was as follows:

The pecuniary affairs of the First Church have undergone so little change, and its incidental, current expenses have been so trivial during the last year, that its Standing Committee would not deem it essential, but for a requirement of the By-Laws of the Society, to make any report upon their doings, during that period, but, would simply refer to the accounts of the Treasurer, herewith submitted.

By reference to the Treasurer’s account it will be seen, that the balance in his hands as per his last account was that he has since received for

$58.87

rents of Pews

2529.72

School rooms and Cellar

460.00

Interest on permanent fund

1582.68

In all

4631.27

That he has disbursed for current annual expenses

For Salaries to Rev. Pastor and to Music

$3508.00

Fuel and other incidental Expenses

345.67

Iron fence and fees for looking after the interests of the Society in Chauncy Place

217.60

In all

4071.27.

leaving a balance in the Treasurer’s hand of

560.00

and there is due for taxes on Pews to 1st April as per schedule

191.00

$751.00

During the year the Treasurer has received also the amount due from John Redman’s estate, say, $10,000, and has paid the note due to James Parker for $8000, leaving the only debt due from the Society, the note for $2,000 payable to Deacon Foster, which the Treasurer offered and wished to pay from the amount received from the estate of Mr. Redman, and thus liquidate [207] every debt against the Society; but as Deacon Foster was unwilling to receive the money, the Treasurer has given his note payable on demand, with interest, with the hope that he might soon be able to pay the debt.

The permanent fund of the Society now consists of a note of Doct.

Putnam for

$11,000

do. Mrs. Davis

10,000

Conn. River Rail Road Bonds

4,000

40 shares Merchant’s Bk. Stock

4,000

and John Hooper’s note for

2,000

31,000

from which should be deducted the note due to Deacon Foster 2,000

leaving the permanent fund at $29,000.

All which is respectfully submitted

per order.

Samuel Henshaw

Chairman of Standing Com.

Boston, April 11, 1848.

Voted To accept the report of the Standing Committee.

Voted To proceed to the choice of Officers—and the following gentlemen were unanimously chosen.

Clerk.

  • Charles Brooks

Standing Committee.

  • Samuel Henshaw
  • John Hooper
  • John E. Thayer
  • Joseph West
  • J. Thomas Stevenson
  • Samuel Frothingham Jr.
  • Charles Brooks

Voted That when this meeting adjourn, it adjourn to meet in this place, one fortnight from this day, at 4 O’clock P.M, to hear the report of the Treasurer of the Committee on Finance and to fill any vacancies in the officers of the Corporation; and also to attend to any other business which may properly come before it.

[208] Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint three members of the Society, who shall have the entire management of the Musical Department. But it will be understood that the Standing Committee are to controul the expenditure of money for that purpose, not exceeding One thousand dollars.

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint a person to collect subscriptions from those members of the Society, who may be disposed to contribute in aid of the Fraternity of Churches, and place the same in the hands of the Treasurer, who shall deliver the amount, so collected, to the Treasurer of said Fraternity.

Voted That Samuel Henshaw be a Committee, to give notice to the City of Boston and the Inhabitants thereof, under the common seal of this Corporation, to bar the said city and inhabitants thereof from acquiring any easement in the land of this Corporation, called “Chauncy Place,” by means of the Water-Pipes lately laid down by the “Water Commissioners” in the said land. And also, to give notice, under our common seal, to bar the said City and Inhabitants thereof, from acquiring any right of way, or other easement, in and over the said land, for foot-passengers or others, on either side of the said land, in consequence of a passage-way having been opened on either side thereof, leading into Bedford Place.

Voted To adjourn.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

An adjourned meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held this day, April 25, 1848. David Francis Esq. was chosen Moderator—Mr. Buckingham being absent.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee having stated, that since the meeting of the Proprietors on April 11th inst, there had been some changes in the funds of the Corporation, he wished, in the name of the Committee to offer another report, which would embrace all the facts as now existing. His report was as follows:

[209] The second Report of the Standing Committee, viz.

By reference to the Treasurer’s account it will be seen, that the balance in

his hands at the commencement of the fiscal year was

58.87

that he received during the year, for rents of Pews

2539.72

for School Room and Cellar

460.00

for Interest on Permanent fund

1699.18

making in all

$4757.77

That he has disbursed for salaries to Rev. Pastor for Music and Sexton

3501.00

For fuel and other incidental expenses

410.56

For Fence and fees paid for looking after the interests

of the Society in Chauncy Place

217.60

amounting in all to

$4129.16

leaving a balance in the Treasurer’s hands of

628.61

and there is now due for taxes on Pews to April 1

233.50

862.11

During the year the Treasurer has received also, the amount due from J. Redman’s estate $10,000.00 and has paid the notes due James Parker for $8,000 and Deacon Foster for $2,000, thereby paying every debt due from the Society.

The permanent fund of the Society now consists of a note of

Doct. Putnam’s for

$11,000

do. Mrs. Davis

10,000

do. Conn. River Rail Road Bonds

4,000

40 shares Merchant’s Bank Stock

4,000

being in all

$29,000

The Standing Committee cannot omit expressing their great satisfaction in being able to state, that the Society is now entirely free from debt—with a permanent fund of $29,000, and a small fund in the hands of the Treasurer available for any extra expense and they cannot omit testifying to the efficient and faithful services of the Treasurer in accomplishing so desirable a result.

For the Committee.

Samuel Henshaw Chairman.

April 25, 1848.

Voted That the report of the Standing Committee, now presented, be accepted and put on record.

The Treasurer’s report was then presented and the report of the auditors, that they found it correctly cast and properly vouched. These reports were accepted and ordered to be put on file.

[210] Voted To proceed to the choice of Treasurer and John Hooper was unanimously chosen.

Voted to proceed to the choice of the Committee on Finance and George W. Wales, Christopher C. Chadwick, and Edward F. Weld were unanimously chosen.

Meeting dissolved.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

Boston April 25, 1848.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church, held at Mr. Henshaw’s office, June 23, 1848.

Voted To proceed to the organization of the Board; and Samuel Henshaw was chosen President.

Voted That Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper be the Committee on Repairs.

Voted That Doct. Gray, William J. Loring and J. T. W. Sargent be a Committee to procure and regulate the Music, on the same conditions as last year.

Voted That Messrs. Hooper and West be a Committee to procure a Sexton.

Voted That Messrs. Henshaw and Hooper be a Committee to procure a better ventilation of the Meeting House.

Voted That the Treasurer be requested and authorised to convert the Bonds of the Connecticut River Railroad Company, held by the Society, into stock of said Corporation.

Meeting dissolved, Charles Brooks Clerk.

[211] At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church, held in Mr. S. Henshaw’s office, March 19, 1849—the whole Committee being present, the Chairman read the following letter from the Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

“Boston March 15, 1849.

To the Standing Committee of the First Church:

Gentlemen, My Friends and Brothers

It is thirty four years today since I was ordained as pastor of the First Church. This is an unusually long term of ministerial duty. I think I may truly say that the service has been anxious and laborious, though performed with too little wisdom, with many deficiencies, and a scantiness of effect that I am humbled to think of. I now find myself less strong than formerly; and indeed have seriously lost health within the last few months.

Under these circumstances, I respectfully propose that the Congregation shall think of choosing some one to be associated with me in the pastoral office. I ask this for my own relief, if their kind opinion shall judge me entitled to it; and I ask it still more from a deep conviction that their interests will be thereby greatly promoted. I am persuaded that a younger hand and a fresher spirit are needed, in order to accomplish for their benefit some objects, which I can in vain strive to effect. I beg that their attention may be turned to this; though without urging that any immediate steps should be taken upon a subject so affecting to me and so important to them. Whenever any person is found, who will unite in his favor the voices of a Society, whom I connect so intimately with all the dearest obligations of my life, I shall decline receiving the least portion of my salary, from the day of his accession.

I wish also to add the request, that, if the state of my health should render a temporary absence desirable, I may be permitted to seek that advantage, and to supply the pulpit during the time in the best manner that I shall be able.

What I thus say, in few words but with feelings more than I can express, I trust will meet with their approbation; and I ask of you the favor to lay this communication before them at their approaching annual meeting. I remain, with the most faithful regards,

Your friend and servant,

N. L. Frothingham.”

[212] After the reading of the letter the following votes were unanimously passed:

Voted That the Chairman and Clerk be requested to inform the Rev. Dr. Frothingham, that his communication of the 15th inst. has been submitted to this Board, and that such portions of it as refer to the appointment of a Colleague shall, agreeably to his request, be communicated to the Proprietors at their first meeting, which will be on the 10th of April next.

Voted That the Chairman and Clerk be requested to express to the Rev. Dr. Frothingham the regret of the members of this Committee at the suggestion, that the state of his health may make it necessary for him to go abroad; but, to assure him that the Committee would regret still more that he should delay his departure beyond the requirements of his own health and convenience; and that the Committee will be ready to make such arrangements for the supply of the pulpit as shall be agreeble to him and in accordance with his suggestions.

Meeting dissolved.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

“The Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” held their meeting according to notice, in the Church, April 10, 1849, at 4 O’clock P.M. The meeting was organized by the choice of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham as Moderator.

After prayers by the Rev. Pastor, the Report of the Standing Committee was submitted—which is as follows:

“In obedience to the By-Laws of the Society, the Standing Committee are required to report upon the disbursements and financial condition of the Society. Said Committee would therefore report that the Treasurer’s accounts shew that he has received, the past year,

for taxes on Pews

$2194.00

for interest on permanent fund

1800.00

for rents of cellar etc.

422.50

in all

4416.50

—that he has disbursed for

[213] salary to the Rev. Pastor

$2500.00

for Music

910.40

for Salary to Sexton

105.00

for Fuel and incidental expenses

261.55

in all

3776.95

making his receipts

$639.55

more than his disbursements

to which, if the balance in Treasury 628.61 at the commencement of the year be added—leaves in Treasury $1268.16

There is now due for taxes on Pews—$291.00—which, if collected, with the cash on hand makes the available means of the Society, independent of the permanent fund, $1559.16 from which should be deducted the cost of the Furnace, recently erected (say $300.)

The permanent fund of the Society consists of Doctor Putnam’s and Mrs. Davis’ notes—secured by mortgage

$21,000.00

40 shares of Merchant’s Bank valued at

4,000.00

40 shares Conn. River Rail Road

4,000.00

Amounting to

29,000.00

The Salary heretofore paid to the Sexton is not sufficient to pay a competent person for the time required to perform the duties; and the Committee recommend that a larger sum be appropriated for this purpose to enable the Society to procure a person who will perform the duties more satisfactorily than they have been.

(signed)

Per order of the Standing Committee

Boston April 10, 1849. Samuel Henshaw Chairman.

The Treasurer’s Report, being in substance like that of the Standing Committee, above recorded, was accepted; having been approved by the Committee on Finance, who offered the following report.

Boston April 10, 1849.

The Finance Committee of the First Church for examining the accounts of the Treasurer, have attended to that duty and find his books accurately cast and properly vouched.

For the Committee

(signed) Edward F. Weld.

George W. Wales.

Voted To proceed to the choice of Officers and Charles Brooks was chosen Clerk.

Messrs. Samuel Henshaw, John Hooper, John E. Thayer, Joseph West, J. Thomas Stevenson, S. Frothingham Jr. and Charles Brooks were chosen as the Standing Committee.

[214] John Hooper was chosen Treasurer.

George W. Wales, Christopher C. Chadwick and Edward F. Weld were chosen Finance Committee.

All the above officers were elected unanimous votes.

The Moderator then read to the Society the Letter sent by Rev. Dr. Frothingham to the Standing Committee, which is recorded in this book, page 211.

After many expressions of respect and affection towards the Rev. Pastor, and some debate on the best modes of procedure in the case, it was Voted To refer the whole subject to a select Committee, with directions to report a reply to Rev. Mr. Frothingham’s letter; and to report, also, what course is deemed most expedient in reference to the requests he makes in said letter.

The Moderator was requested to name a Committee of five—He accordingly nominated Messrs. William Hayden, Daniel L. Gibbins, J. Thomas Stevenson, James Foster and Charles Brooks and they were chosen.

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint some person to collect money for the “Fraternity of Churches,” according to the vote of last year on this subject, v. p. 208.

Voted To adjourn—to meet in the same place on Tuesday next, 3½ O’clock P.M.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

April 16, 1849.

[215] At a regular meeting of the Standing Committee held at Mr. S. Henshaw’s Office—all the members being present—it was,

Voted To proceed to the organization of the Board, whereupon the following officers and Committees were unanimously chosen.

Chairman.

  • Samuel Henshaw

Committee on Repairs.

  • S. Henshaw and John Hooper

Committee on Music.

  • John Hooper
  • S. Frothingham Jr. and S. Henshaw

Committee to procure a Sexton.

  • Joseph West and John Hooper

Voted That the thanks of the Committee be given to the surviving members of the Committee who have superintended the musical department during the past year.

Voted That the Rev. Dr. Walker,9 of Cambridge, be requested to supply the pulpit of the First Church during the absence of the Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest—C. Brooks Clerk.

The adjourned meeting was held April 17, J. T. Buckingham in the chair when it was,

Voted That all the unfinished business of the meeting, adjourned as per record, be referred to the annual meeting of the Corporation to be held this day, agreeable to the By-Laws.

Meeting dissolved.

(Attest) Charles Brooks Clerk.

[216] The annual meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston,” was held in the Church April 17, 1849, at 3½ O’clock P. M. The meeting was organized by the choice of Joseph T. Buckingham as Moderator.

The annual meetings of the last three years having been warned and held on the second instead of the third Tuesdays of April, therefore

Voted That all the proceedings of these meetings, and also all the proceedings of the Standing Committee, growing out of them, be and the same are hereby ratified and confirmed; anything in the By-Laws of this Corporation to the contrary notwithstanding.

Voted To hear the report of the Special Committee chosen to consider and reply to Rev. Dr. Frothingham’s letter of the 15 ultimo.

Mr. Hayden submitted the following Report:

“First Church, Chauncy Place

April 17th 1849.

The special Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, to whom was referred the letter from the Rev. Dr. Frothingham, proposing “that the congregation shall think of choosing some one to assist him in the Pastoral Office,” and also asking a temporary absence for the benefit of health, have had that letter under consideration, and respectfully Report:

The Committee feel a deep regret—in which they have no doubt that all the Proprietors will join—that any circumstance affecting the health of our esteemed and beloved Minister should have induced the necessity of suggesting the expediency of the appointment of a person to assist him in the performance of his duties and labors as the Pastor of our Church. It is probably well known to most of the Society, that he is at present laboring under the affliction of diminished strength and impaired health. Even if this were not the case, the Committee are of opinion that thirty four years of anxious and almost unintermitted labor, in our service, would entitle Dr. Frothingham to our kindest and warmest sympathies, and to any reasonable assistance which he [217] might ask at our hands—and we are quite sure that he would ask none that was not reasonable.

Under these circumstances the Committee recommend that the Proprietors do express, by the acceptance of this Report, their acquiescence in the proposition made by the Rev. Dr. Frothingham in relation to the appointment of an Assistant Minister, and their determination to proceed to such appointment, as soon as a person shall be found who will unite in his favor the voices of the Society, and whose appointment will be agreeable to our Pastor.

That part of Dr. Frothingham’s letter which relates to a temporary absence, for the restoration of his health, has already been acted upon and satisfactorily settled, by the Standing Committee, whose measures on this subject will, without doubt, meet the entire approbation of the Proprietors.

The Committee have drawn up and herewith submit, a letter in reply to that of Dr. Frothingham; which reply they hope will be deemed suitable by the Proprietors. They further recommend the appointment of a Committee to sign the said reply, in behalf of the Proprietors, and cause it to be placed in the hands of the Rev. Dr. Frothingham previously to his departure for Europe.

For the Committee,

(signed) William Hayden Chairman.

The Letter above referred to was read. The following is a copy.

Boston April 17 1849.

Reverend dear Sir,

Our Pastor and Friend—

As a Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, charged with this duty, we have to acknowledge the receipt of your letter, dated on the 15th of the last month; and addressed to the Standing Committee of our Congregation. It was laid before the Proprietors at their recent annual meeting.

The reception of that letter has called forth, in the hearts of your associates in this religious society, a deep feeling of interest and solicitude. Its date on the close of your thirty fourth year of your connection with us, as the Pastor of our Church, calls up recollections [218] and associations of intermingled sadness and pleasure—sadness; that, like all other human ties and attachments, those that have bound you to us must be slackened and sundered—pleasure; in the contemplation of so many years of social, and friendly, and Christian intercourse, and of a long series of duties, on your part so calmly, unobtrusively, patiently, and to us satisfactorily performed.

“Anxious and laborious,” we know, the performance of your long term of ministerial service must have been. Any lack of wisdom, any deficiency, or any scantiness of what we deem the true and desirable effect of such service, we do not readily recognize. Those among us, who have known you the longest and most intimately, will be the most ready to bear witness—a testimony in which we all cordially unite—to the singular ability and faithfulness with which your Pastoral duties have been discharged.

It has been a source of great regret, Dear Sir, to the members of this Church, to learn that you are conscious of failing strength and illness of body. They most fervently hope and trust, that relief from arduous duty, and change of scene and of climate, will speedily restore you to your wonted health.

Your letter proposes that the Congregation shall think of choosing some one to be associated with you in the Pastoral Office. After so long and so faithful a course of service with us, this appears to us a reasonable request; and we are commissioned, by the Proprietors of the Church, to say, that they accede to that request. The subject will engage their earnest attention; and whenever any one can be found, to be joined with you in this highly important vocation, who shall unite the voices of our society and be acceptable to you, the Proprietors will be ready to enter into this new relation.

Your request for a temporary absence, with a view to the restoration of your health, has been promptly acted upon and acceded to, by the Standing Committee—and their proceedings, in that respect, are fully sanctioned and approved by the Proprietors of the Church.

And now, Dear Sir, in behalf of the Christian Society with which you have been so long associated, permit us to utter the fervent wish, that the Divine Power, in whose worship we have so often united, may have watch and guard over you during your absence, and return you to us with invigorated health and renewed energy.

We bid you a warm and affectionate Farewell.

(signed)

William Hayden

Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church

To Rev. N. L. Frothingham D.D.

Daniel L. Gibbins

Pastor of the First Church.

James H. Foster

J. Thomas Stevenson

Charles Brooks.

[219] After the reading of the above Report and Letter, Voted That the Report be accepted and that the same Committee be requested to sign the letter for the Proprietors and send it immediately to the Pastor.

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorized to appoint a Sexton and to fix his salary.

Meeting dissolved.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

April 17, 1849.

December 10, 1849.

A special meeting of the Standing Committee was held at Mr. S. Henshaw’s Office. All the members present. A note was received from the Rev. Dr. Frothingham stating that he should resign his office as Pastor, on account of continued ill health and would soon communicate a letter to that effect. After mature deliberation it seemed to be the unanimous opinion of the Committee, that we should devise means for securing a successor to Dr. Frothingham; whereupon it was

Voted unanimously, that a meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church be legally called to be held in the meeting-house, in Chauncy Place December 20th inst. at 3 O’clock P.M. for the purpose of acting on the resignation of the Rev. Pastor; and to take steps for the appointment of his successor.

Meeting dissolved.

Boston December 10, 1849. C. Brooks Clerk.

December 20, 1849.

[220] At a regular meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” held in their Meeting-House, in Chauncy Place, according to notice.

Daniel L. Gibbins was chosen Moderator. Prayer having been offered by the Rev. Dr. Frothingham, the Chairman of the Standing Committee read to the meeting the following letter

“To the Proprietors of the First Church.

Boston Dec. 19th 1849.

Christian Friends,

In the Spring of the present year, on account of impaired health, I requested that some one might be associated with me in the ministerial office. At the same time I asked leave for a temporary absence, if the state of my health should seem to require it. Permit me to take this opportunity of expressing my warmest thanks for the obliging manner in which the letter of these wishes was immediately met by the Standing Committee of the Society; and for the very handsome and kind expressions, with which my communication to the Proprietors of the First Church was replied to, by a special Committee from your body.

On my return home in the Autumn, without obtaining the complete restoration that I had hoped for, I renewed from the pulpit the same request that I had made six or seven months before. On further reflection, however, I have been induced to change the form of my proposal. At a late meeting of the Standing Committee, held for the purpose of considering the subject of choosing a new Minister for our Congregation, I addressed to them a note, expressing the desire, that this Minister whenever chosen, might be invited as my Successor, and not as my Colleague.

And now, Brethren, that you are met for an object of such grave interest as the calling of another to the place, where I have so long been honored and privileged to stand, I respectfully, and with profound sensibility offer the resignation of my ministerial charge. When it shall take [221] effect, I wish to leave to your judgment of what is best. I am willing to retain my office, should you desire to have it so, until my Successor is appointed; provided that this interval shall not extend beyond the Anniversary of my Ordination in March next. Or I will retire at once, if that shall appear more conducive to your interests, or to the freedom and ease of your future action. My chief solicitude is for the union and welfare of a Society, with which I have been happily connected for so many years.

I remain, brethren,

With earnest regard,

Your friend and servant,

N. L. Frothingham.

After remarks on the above letter, it was Voted That the resignation of Rev. Dr. Frothingham be accepted, according to the conditions expressed in his letter.

Voted That a Committee of three be chosen to report, at an adjourned meeting, a reply to the letter of resignation; and Messrs. J. Thomas Stevenson, Joseph T. Buckingham and William Hayden were chosen. All business thus relating to our Rev. Pastor, having been most amicably arranged, the Proprietors were called to act on the subject mentioned in the official notification; namely, the choice of a Successor. The Chairman of the Standing Committee having explained the action of the Committee in the case, a long and friendly debate ensued.

Mr. Weld offered the following—That the Standing Committee be authorized to supply the pulpit with suitable candidates for the office about to be vacated, upon such terms and for such time as they may think proper, until otherwise directed.”—This was laid on the table.

Voted That when we adjourn, we adjourn to meet in this place on Monday next, at 3 O’clock P.M.

Voted That the subject of filling the vacancy occasioned by the resignation of Rev. Dr. Frothingham be postponed until the next meeting, and then be made the special subject for consideration.

Voted That this meeting adjourn to Monday next at 3. O’clock P. M. in this place.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

[222] The Proprietors of the First Church met in the Meetinghouse, in Chauncy Place, on Monday, December 24 according to the vote of adjournment—3 O’clock P.M. Daniel L. Gibbins in the chair.

After remarks, by the Chairman, the following vote was proposed:

That this meeting do now adjourn to meet in this place on the 15th of March next. This was decided in the negative. After which was Voted That we now proceed to vote by ballot for a Minister of the First Church, to fill the vacancy made by the resignation of the Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

Voted That a Committee of three be appointed by the Chair to collect, count and sort the votes, and also to examine the Proxies. Whereupon, William Hayden, J. Preston and E. F. Weld were chosen.

After the ballot the Chairman declared the result as follows:

Whole number of votes sixty two—necessary to a choice thirty two—Rev. Andrew P. Peabody of Portsmouth N. H. has thirty six—Rev. Chandler Robbins eleven—Dr. James Walker five—Dr. Walker five—Dr. Frothingham two—Dr. Putnam one—Rev. Mr. Lunt one—Rev. Mr. Peabody one. Whereupon the Moderator declared that the Rev. Andrew P. Peabody is chosen the Pastor of the First Church in Boston.

Voted That a Committee of three be appointed to wait on the Rev. Mr. Peabody to inform him of his election. And Charles Brooks, C. C. Paine and William Hayden were chosen.

Voted That the annual salary of Three thousand dollars be paid to Rev. Mr. Peabody, in case of his acceptance.

Voted To adjourn to Monday January 7, 1850—to meet in this place at 3 O’clock. P.M.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

Boston December 24, 1849.

[223] The Proprietors of the First Church met, according to adjournment, on Monday January 7, 1850. Daniel L. Gibbins in the chair.

The Committee, to whom was referred the letter of the Rev. Dr. Frothingham resigning his Pastoral Office, submitted their report, offering the following as a reply to said letter:

“Boston January 7th 1850—

Rev. and dear Sir,

Our Christian Guide and Friend,

We are commissioned by the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, to acknowledge the receipt of your letter, addressed to them, on the 19th of Dec. ultimo, in which you offer to them the resignation of your ministerial charge.

In accordance with your wishes, your offer of resignation has been unanimously accepted. Many and poignant are the regrets that have accompanied that vote. The Christian Society, with which you have been so long associated, relinquish their official connection with you, with deep and unfeigned reluctance. They revert with pleasant and grateful recollection, to the many years of official and personal intercourse, which have passed between you and them—and they look to it, as the common tho’ melancholly result of all earthly associations, that the official ties and attachments, which have so long bound you and them together, are now about to be sundered.

Thirty five years of constant and well performed labor, in any one vocation, covering, as that space of time does, a large portion of the active life allotted to any human being, may well plead exemption from the further troubles incident to any profession. The members of this Society readily recognize your title to such exemption—and while they come to the dissolution of this connection with sincere regret, they clearly perceive and promptly acknowledge your right of immunity from the toils of a profession, the duties of which you have so constantly and conscienciously discharged.

The history of our Church dates back to a point contemporaneous with the commencement [224] of the social community in which we live. The Town of Boston and the First Church of Boston are nearly coeval. The records of our Church present, in the long roll of its Ministry, the names of many men, eminent, in their day, for their patriotism, men, eminent, in their day, for their patriotism, learning and piety. By the common consent of this grateful and affectionate Society, your name will now be inscribed upon that illustrious roll, as that of one who has well entitled himself to a high rank there, by a long course of duty, laboriously, faithfully and acceptably performed.

Allow the members of this Society to entertain the hope, and it is one which they dearly cherish, that, though this official connection is now about to terminate, the personal and friendly relations, which have subsisted between you and them, may still be cherished and preserved.

Fervently wishing that health and happiness may ever attend you, the Proprietors of the First Church direct us to sign this letter in their behalf—and we subscribe ourselves,

with sincere esteem and regard

Your friends and Servants,

J. Thomas Stevenson

Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church.”

Joseph T. Buckingham

William Hayden

For The Rev. N. L. Frothingham D.D.—”

After the reading of the above answer it was

Voted unanimously, to accept the report; and that the same Committee be requested to sign it for the Proprietors and transmit it to Dr. Frothingham.

The above duties having been performed, accompanied with expressions of attachment and respect towards the retiring Pastor, the Proprietors called for the report of their Committee, appointed to wait on the Rev. Mr. Peabody and communicate to him their choice of him as Pastor of the First Church.

The Committee presented their report. After it had been discussed and amended, it was accepted by a unanimous vote. It is as follows:

[225] “Chauncy Place Church,

Jan. 7, 1850.

The Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, appointed at the meeting holden on the 24th December ulti., to wait upon the Rev. Mr. Peabody, of Portsmouth, N. H. and inform him of his election as Pastor of this Church, in the place of the Rev. Dr. Frothingham, resigned—have attended to that duty, and ask leave to report, in part.

The Committee have communicated to Rev. Mr. Peabody the offer of the Pastoral charge of this Church. They have stated to him the votes which were given on the occasion—and, all the circumstances, so far as they were known to the Committee, which attended that election. Mr. Peabody has consented to postpone his answer for the present, and await further proceedings in the premises.

Under these circumstances, the Committee request that this may be considered a Report in part—and they ask further time for the performance of the duty assigned them.

Respectfully submitted—

For the Committee—

Charles Brooks Chairman.”

After a discussion of the report, a member of the Corporation asked leave to read a private letter from Dr. Frothingham—which leave was granted.

Voted That when we adjourn, we adjourn to meet in this place on Monday January 21, 1850, at 3 O’clock P.M.

Mr. Jonathan Preston introduced an order relating to the opening of the windows under the gallery, which windows have been closed—whereupon it was,

Voted that a Committee of three be chosen to report at the next meeting upon the subject as proposed by Mr. Preston, and, Messrs. Preston, Dingley and Hayward were chosen.

Voted to adjourn.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

[226] The Proprietors of the First Church met, according to adjournment, in the usual place, on Monday, January 21, 1850, Daniel L. Gibbens in the chair.

The Report of the Committee, appointed to communicate to the Rev. Andrew P. Peabody his election as Pastor of the First Church, was called for and read. The duties assigned to the Committee had been performed, and Mr. Peabody had taken the proposition under consideration, but, had not yet returned an answer. The Committee therefore reported, in part, and asked further time.

The Report was accepted by a unanimous vote.

Mr. Ralph Huntington offered the following:

“That in the contract of settlement with Rev. Mr. Peabody it be mutually understood that after the expiration of 12 months from the date thereof it shall be at the option of either party to dissolve the same by giving six months notice of said intention.”

Without debate this was immediately laid on the table.

Mr. Preston offered the Report of the Committee appointed on the subject of Windows: as follows:

“First Church—Chauncy Place—

Jan. 21st 1850.

The Committee to whom was referred an order contemplating certain improvements specified therein, have attended to the duty assigned them and have instructed me to make the following report; accompanied by plans and estimates.

1st. They recommend that 4 windows be placed under each of the galleries in the several recesses as designated, in the plans,—That these windows be glazed with stained glass, to correspond nearly with that in the ceiling, and furnished with blinds having rolling slats.

2d. That the side windows be raised from their present position to within about 4 inches of the top capping of the back gallery pews—also, furnished with blinds—one sash at least in each of the windows must be properly hung for the purpose of airing the church and for ventilation.

[227] 3d. That, if practicable, the several steps adjoining the gallery pews be made more easy of ascent.

4th. That suitable gutters be placed over the entrance of the Church, under eaves of the projection and over the steps,—

Provided, that the whole expense shall not exceed the sum of six hundred dollars.

All which is respectfully submitted

For the Committee.

Jonathan Preston Chairman.”

Voted unanimously, to accept the above report and that the same Committee, who offered it, be authorized to make the alterations and repairs accordingly.

Voted To adjourn to Monday, February 18, 1850, unless sooner called together by order of the Committee, appointed to confer with Rev. Mr. Peabody.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

The Proprietors of the First Church met according to a notice authorized by order of the Committee appointed to confer with the Rev. Mr. Peabody, in their meeting-house, February 4, 1850. Daniel L. Gibbins, in the chair.

After reading the records of the last meeting, the report of the Committee, appointed to convey to the Rev. A. P. Peabody the vote of the Proprietors, electing him as Pastor of the First Church, was called for—Whereupon, the Chairman of that Committee offered the following Report.

Chauncy Place Feb. 4th 1850.

The Committee, appointed to convey to the Rev. Andrew P. Peabody the vote of the Proprietors of the First Church electing him as their Pastor, have attended to that duty, and now offer their final report by reading the following letter from Mr. Peabody.

[228] “Portsmouth N. H. Jan. 29, 1850.

To the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston.

Christian Brethren,

Your Committee, actuated I believe both by friendship for myself and by sincere solicitude for your corporate union and prosperity, induced me to withdraw my negative answer to your invitation of Dec. 25th, until they could place before me what they conceived would be a more authentic expression of your feelings and wishes, than the vote then passed. Since your last Parish meeting I have received a document containing the signatures of a large majority of your number, to a request that I would become your Pastor. This paper, gratifying as it is to me, lacks the emphasis, and in some minds (I have reason to believe) the binding obligation, of a vote. At the same time, it bears the signature of much less than the whole number of Proprietors, and therefore falls far short of the “virtual unanimity” which was the sole condition, on which I promised your Committee that I would “take your call into favorable consideration and lay it before my present Parish.”

Under these circumstances I deem it my obvious duty to adhere to my negative answer of 29th ulti. With the sincerest wishes for your peace and union, and the hope that this end may be essentially promoted by my withdrawal as a candidate for the pastoral office among you, I remain

Your Friend and Brother

A. P. Peabody.”

This report was accepted unanimously; and ordered to be placed on file.10

Voted That the thanks of the Proprietors of the First Church be given to the Rev. Dr. Walker for his very acceptable services to this Parish during our Pastor’s absence in Europe.

Voted That the Clerk be requested to transmit a copy of this vote to Rev. Dr. Walker.

The Clerk here repeated the wish, which he expressed at the last meeting, of resigning his office on account of some weakness of his eyes—Not yielding [229] to the request of some friends, that he would remain in office, his resignation was accepted.

Voted To proceed to the choice of a Clerk—and Joseph H. Buckingham was unanimously chosen.

Mr. Huntington offered the following:

“Ordered—That Messrs. [blank] be a special Committee for the purpose of inviting one or more Clergymen to preach before the congregation of this Church to enable the Proprietors to unite in the selection of a Pastor with all practicable unanimity—It being understood that all the matters connected with the terms of settlement be reserved for the future action of said Proprietors.”

This, after some debate, was laid upon the table—and the following substituted for it, and passed.

“Voted That the Standing Committee be empowered and requested to supply the Pulpit, whenever it shall be vacant by the absence of Rev. Dr. Frothingham, and until further order.”

Meeting dissolved.

Charles Brooks Clerk.

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Suffolk s.s. Before me, on this the fourth day of February A.D. 1850, personally appeared Joseph H. Buckingham and made oath that he would truly record all votes passed at any regular meeting of the Corporation of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of the same, during the time he should remain in the office of Clerk thereof.

Daniel L. Gibbens, Justice of the Peace.

[230] Meeting of the Standing Committee, Friday, February 22, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston” having been duly notified, was held at the office of Samuel Henshaw, in State Street, at nine o’clock this morning.

Present—Messrs. Henshaw, Stevenson, Frothingham, West, and Thayer. On motion of Mr. Stevenson, it was

Resolved—That the Chairman and Mr. Brooks be authorized to make an arrangement with Rev. Dr. Walker, to supply the pulpit after the 15th of March next, until further notice; and that they be authorised to contract with Dr. Walker at the same rate for each Sunday, as is paid to Dr. Frothingham. It was

Voted That Mr. Stevenson be requested to Communicate the action of this meeting to Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

The meeting was then Dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Tuesday, March 12, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified, was held at the office of Samuel Henshaw, in State Street, at nine o’clock this morning.

Present—Messrs. Brooks, Frothingham, West, and Stevenson.

In the absence of the Chairman, Mr. Brooks was elected Chairman pro tempore.

Mr. Brooks, from the Committee on that subject, reported verbally, that an arrangement has been made with the Rev. Dr. Walker to supply the pulpit until after the next annual meeting of the incorporation.

On motion of Mr. Stevenson, it was

Voted That the Chairman pro tem. notify the Rev. Dr. Frothingham that the Standing Committee would be happy to have him continue to occupy the [231] Pastor’s Pew.

On motion of Mr. Brooks, the following letter was addressed to Rev. Dr. Frothingham, and signed by every member of the Standing Committee:

“Rev. Dr. Frothingham Boston March 12, 1850.

Dear Sir,

Impressed by the truth and eloquence of your valedictory sermon, delivered on Sunday last, we the Standing Committee of the First Church, respectfully ask a copy of it, for publication: and we would also ask your permission to publish, in an appendix, the interesting correspondence, which passed between you and your society, relating to your resignation of the Pastoral Office.

Accept the expression of our respect,

and best wishes.”

Mr. Brooks charged himself with the duty of delivering the letter and attending to the business involved by it.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday, April 15, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified, was held at the office of Samuel Henshaw, in State Street, at nine o’clock this morning.

Present—The whole Board.

The Chairman submitted a draft of his annual report, to be made to the Corporation, at the Annual Meeting, tomorrow, which was approved of. On motion of Mr. Thayer, it was

Voted that Mr. Brooks be instructed to make an arrangement with Rev. Dr. Walker, to preach next Sunday.

The meeting was dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[232] Annual Meeting. Tuesday, April 16, 1850.

The proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” held their annual meeting in the Church, in Chauncy Place, at three o’clock this afternoon. The meeting was called to order by the Chairman of the Standing Committee, Mr. S. Henshaw, and organised by the choice of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham as Moderator.

The Clerk being absent Edward F. Weld was chosen Clerk pro-tem. and was duly sworn. The Moderator read the record of the proceedings of the Standing Committee, since the last meeting of the Proprietors.

In conformity to the By Laws of the Corporation, the Chairman of the Standing Committee present the Annual Report, which was as follows:

“The By-Laws of the “First Church” require its Standing Committee to report, annually, upon the disbursements and financial condition of the Society. In obedience thereto, the Committee report, that the Treasurer’s accounts show that there was a balance in his hands at the last annual meeting of

$1268.16

That he has since received for taxes on Pews

$2073.00

For interest and dividend on the permanent Fund

1820.00

For Rents of School Rooms etc.

297.50

4190.50

Making an aggregate of

$5458.66

That he has disbursed,

For Salary to Dr. Frothingham

$2375.00

For Expenses of Choir

862.17

For Sexton

105.00

For Repairs, including cost of new Furnace

771.11

For Fuel and incidental Expenses

338.80

4452.08

Leaving a balance in the hands of the Treasurer of

$1006.58

There is now due for taxes on Pews

471.00

which, if collected, make the available means amount to

1477.58

The Permanent Fund of the Society remains [233] as last year, and consists of Notes, secured by Mortgages, against Dr. Putnam

and Mrs. Davis, for

$21,000.00

40 shares Merchants Bank

4,000.00

40 chares Connecticut River Railroad

4,000.00

In all

$29,000.00

The Committee are not aware that there are any outstanding bills against the Society, except those incurred by the Special Committee appointed to place windows under the galleries.

Boston April 16, 1850.

pr. order Samuel Henshaw,

Chairman, Standing Com.”

This report was accepted.

Mr. Jonathan Preston, presented the report of the Committee appointed January twenty first, to make certain alterations and repairs, which was as follows:

“Chauncy Place April 16, 1850.

The subscribers, who were appointed a Committee to make certain improvements, have attended to that duty and Report.

The amount of the several bills rendered for Mason’s Work, Caps and Sills, Carpenters, Painters and Glaisers, and Copper-Smith’s bill for gutters and putting them up over the front steps, and other incidental expenses, as per Bills herewith submitted, amount to $588.11.

The Committee were also instructed to alter the steps leading to the galleries, if “practicable.” Finding it to be so they caused “at the earnest solicitation of those occupying Pews in that place,” all the stair cases, six in number, leading to all the pews, to be rebuilt, on an easy and convenient rise and step, at an expense of $30, for each flight, amounting to $180.00 all of which is Respectfully submitted by the Committee,

Jonathan Preston,

John T. Dingley,

James T. Hayward.”

Voted That said report be accepted, and that the Treasurer be authorised to pay the expense incurred.

Mr. John Hooper, presented the Auditor’s report, which was as follows.

“Boston April 15, 1850. The subscriber, of the Auditing Committee of the Chauncy Place Church, having examined the Treasurer’s account with said Church find the same correct, and the disbursements properly vouched.

Edward F. Weld.

[234] On motion of Thomas B. Wales, Esq. it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint a person to collect subscriptions from those members of the Society who may be disposed to contribute in aid of the Fraternity of Churches, and place the same in the hands of the Treasurer of Said Fraternity.

Voted To proceed to the choice of officers.

Joseph H. Buckingham, was chosen Clerk, and David Francis, was chosen Treasurer, for the ensuing year.

Chauncy Place Meeting House and Chauncy Hall School, 1857

On motion of Mr. Henry Cutter, Messrs. J. Thomas Stevenson and John Hooper, were appointed a Committee to report a list of Candidates for Standing Committee for the ensuing year. The following list was reported by Mr. Stevenson, and elected by ballot, as the Standing Committee:

David Francis, James T. Hayward, Thomas B. Wales Jr., Otis Rich, Christopher C. Chadwick, J. T. W. Sargent, and Ezra Lincoln.

On motion of Rev. Charles Brooks, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to have the walls and fences cleaned, and a notice “Stick no bills here,” placed thereon.

Voted That the thanks of the Society be presented to the Standing Committee, and also to the Treasurer, for the faithful manner in which they have performed their duties.

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorised to appoint a Sexton, and affix a salary for said officer.

Rev. Charles Brooks moved

That the Standing Committee be requested to supply the desk, the compensation to be paid for said service not to exceed twenty five dollars per Sunday.

A division of the question being demanded, the first part, authorising the Standing Committee to supply the desk, was adopted; but the second part, relating to the compensation to be paid, was rejected.

[235] Messrs. George W. Wales, John T. Dingley, and Edward F. Weld, were elected a Committee of Finance.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest,

Edward F. Weld Clerk, Pro Tem.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Thursday April 18, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified by the Clerk, at the request of Mr. David Francis, was held this morning, at nine o’clock, at the office of Mr. Ezra Lincoln, No 4 Court Street.

Present: Messrs. Lincoln, Francis, Hayward, Wales, and Rich.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and, on motion of Mr. Francis, Ezra Lincoln was chosen chairman of the Standing Committee for the year ensuing.

The members present signified their acceptance of the office conferred upon them by the proprietors, at the annual meeting on Tuesday last, the 16th instant.

The Clerk announced and read a letter from Mr. J. T. W. Sargent declining to be a member of the Standing Committee.

On motion of the Chairman,

Voted That the Clerk be directed to call a special meeting of the Proprietors, to be held at the Church in Chauncy Place, on Tuesday next, April twenty third, at half past three o’clock in the afternoon, for the purpose of filling any vacancies that may exist in the board of the Standing Committee, and for the transaction of any other business that may then come before them.

The Chairman nominated Messrs. Wales and Hayward, as the Committee to select and appoint a Sexton; and those gentlemen were elected, accordingly.

The Chairman nominated Messrs. Lincoln, Rich, and Hayward, as the Committee on Music; and these gentlemen [236] were elected, accordingly.

It was Voted That when this meeting be adjourned, it be adjourned to meet at the Church in Chauncy Place, immediately after the dissolution of the special meeting of the Proprietors, on Tuesday next, April twenty third. Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Tuesday, April 23, 1850.

A special meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” having been legally named by the Clerk, was held at the Church in Chauncy Place, this day, at half past three o’clock in the afternoon.

The meeting was called to order by Mr. Lincoln, chairman of the Standing Committee, who stated that it was called for the purpose of filling a vacancy in the Standing Committee, occasioned by Mr. J. T. W. Sargent, who was elected at the Annual Meeting held on Tuesday last, declining to accept the office to which he was chosen.

Daniel L. Gibbens Esq. was chosen Moderator.

The clerk being absent, Joseph L. Henshaw was chosen Clerk pro tempore.

After the proceedings of the last meeting had been read, on motion of Joseph P. Bradlee, it was

Voted to proceed to ballot for a member to fill the vacancy in the Standing Committee.

Mr. Bradlee was appointed a Committee to collect, sort and count the votes, and he subsequently reported that the

Whole number of votes was

22

Dr. Samuel L. Abbot, had

21.

Joseph T. Buckingham, had

1.

Dr. Samuel L. Abbot having the largest number, and a majority of all the votes was accordingly declared duly elected.

On motion of Mr. Bradlee, the meeting was then dissolved.

Attest,

J. L. Henshaw Clerk Pro tem.

[237] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Tuesday, April 23, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” was held, according to adjournment, at the Church in Chauncy Place, this day, immediately after the meeting of the Proprietors was dissolved.

Present: Messrs. Lincoln, Wales, Rich, Hayward, and Abbot.

The Clerk being absent S. L. Abbot was chosen Clerk pro tempore.

On motion of Mr. Wales, Messrs. Lincoln, Wales, and Abbot were chosen a Committee to supply the pulpit from Sunday to Sunday until some permanent arrangement shall be made.

Voted That the Chairman wait upon Mr. David Reed11 and make an arrangement, if possible, with him, for the accommodation on the Sabbath day at his house of such Clergymen as may be invited to preach at the First Church.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest

S. L. Abbot Clerk pro tem.

Meeting of the Standing Committee.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” was held, after being duly notified by the Clerk, at the Office of Ezra Lincoln Esq. No 4 Court Street, this morning at nine o’clock.

Mr. Hayward, from the Committee on employing a sexton, reported that the Committee had engaged Mr. Dilloway, the Sexton of last Year, and had agreed to pay him at the rate of one hundred and fifty dollars a year.

This report was accepted and the doings of the Committee confirmed.

The Chairman nominated as the Committee on repairs, Messrs. Wales, and Francis, and this appointment was confirmed.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[238] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday August 5, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified by the Clerk, was held at nine o’clock this morning, at the office of Ezra Lincoln, No 4 Court Street.

Present—Messrs. Lincoln, Francis, Hayward and Wales.

The Chairman presented several applications which had been made to him by candidates for the office of Sexton, that office having been suddenly made vacant by the death of Mr. Dilloway.12 They were referred to the Committee on the subject of Sexton.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday September 9, 1850.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified by the Clerk, was held at nine o’clock this morning, at the office of Ezra Lincoln, No 4 Court Street. Present—Messrs. Lincoln, Wales, Hayward, and Rich.

The Chairman presented a letter from Mrs. Abby L. Wales, Secretary of the “Boston Female Asylum” asking for the use of the Church for the Fiftieth Celebration of the Anniversary of the Asylum, which is to take place on Friday, the twentieth instant.

On motion of Mr. Hayward, it was unanimously Voted That the request be granted. And the Clerk was directed to give Mrs. Wales notice to that effect.

Mr. Hayward, from the Committee on employing a Sexton, reported verbally that the Committee had engaged Mr. Dodd, partner of the late Mr. Dilloway to serve as Sexton, on trial for a short time.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[239] Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Sunday February 16, 1851.

A special meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston,” having been legally notified by the Clerk, was held at the meeting House in Chauncy Place, immediately after the Afternoon Service, on Sunday the sixteenth day of February 1851. The meeting was called to order by Mr. Lincoln, Chairman of the Standing Committee, and Daniel L. Gibbens Esq. was chosen Moderator. The Chairman of the Standing Committee explained that the object of calling the meeting was to obtain an expression of the views of the Proprietors, on the subject of the choice of a Pastor.

After some conversation, without any other vote being taken, the meeting, on motion of Deacon James H. Foster, was dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday April 14, 1851.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified by the Clerk, was held at the office of Ezra Lincoln, the Chairman, No 4 Court Street, at nine o’clock this morning.

Present, Messrs. Lincoln, Wales, Rich, Hayward, Abbot, and Francis.

The Chairman presented a draft of his annual Report of the condition of the Corporation, which was adopted and directed to be presented at the Annual Meeting of the Proprietors which is to be held tomorrow, the sixteenth instant.

After some informal consultation, the meeting was dissolved.

Attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[240] Annual Meeting. Tuesday April 15, 1851.

The Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” held their annual meeting in the Church in Chauncy Place, at half past three o’clock this afternoon.

The meeting was called to order by Mr. Lincoln, Chairman of the Standing Committee, and Daniel L. Gibbens Esquire was chosen Moderator. On motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington, the Clerk was directed to read all the records of all the meetings of the Corporation and of the Standing Committee which had been held during the past year and they were read accordingly.

The Annual Report, was then read by the Chairman of the Standing Committee, and on motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington it was accepted, ordered to be placed on file and to be copied on to the records: It was in the words following, to wit:

“Annual Report of the Standing Committee of the First Church.

In accordance with the requirements of the By-Laws of the “First Church” the Standing Committee beg leave to submit the annual Statement of the disbursements and financial condition of the Society.

The Committee find, from the Treasurer’s accounts, that there was a balance placed in his hands by his predecessor in office, at the last annual

meeting of

$1,006.58

That he has since received—for Taxes on Pews

$2,396.83

for interest on Stock and Mortgages, being the permanent fund

1,680.00

for Rent of School Rooms etc.

428.75

4,505.58

5,512.16

That he has disbursed—

for salary to Clergymen supplying the Pulpit

$1035.00

for expenses of Choir, including Repairs of organ

1152.35

for Sexton

108.33

for Ventilation Stoves and Fuel

137.30

for Repairs and Furnishing, including cost of putting in side windows

1405.69

for Taxes and Insurance

50.40

[241] for cost of accomodating Clergymen at David Reed’s

78.00

for incidental expenses not included in the foregoing

256.85

4223.92

Leaving a balance in the hands of the Treasurer, of

$1288.14

There is due on 13 pews

218.00

Which, if collected would make the available means, amount to

$1506.14

The Permanent Fund of the Society remains as last year, and consists of notes secured by mortgages against Dr. Putnam and

Mrs. Davis, for

$21,000.00

40 shares Merchants Bank

4,000.00

40 shares Connecticut River Railroad

4,000.00

In all

$29,000.00

The Committee are not aware that there are any outstanding bills against the Society.

Boston April 15, 1851.

Per order

(signed) Ezra Lincoln

Chairman of Standing Committee.”

Mr. Weld, for the Committee on Finance, presented the following Annual Report.

“The committee of Finance report: That they have examined the Treasurer’s accounts—the receipts into the Treasury, since the last annual report, have been as follows:

Receipts

Cash received from the late Treasurer

$1006.58

Received for taxes assessed the passed year

2086.00

Received for taxes assessed previous years

287.83

Interest on Notes held by the Corporation

1260.00

Dividend on Bank and Railroad Stock

420.00

Rent of School Rooms and Cellar

428.75

Total receipts

$5489.16

Payments

Repairs and alterations

$1514.86

Supply of Pulpit

1113.00

Music

1152.35

Sexton

108.33

Collection of Pew taxes

106.55

[242] Repair of Furnaces

62.40

Fuel

60.15

Taxes and Insurance

50.40

Sundries

32.88

Total payments

$4200.92

Leaving a balance in the hands of the Treasurer of

$1288.24

Respectfully submitted

(signed)

Edward F. Weld

Committee”

John T. Dingley

Boston April 14, 1851.

N.B. There is a difference in amount of receipts between this account and the Treasurer’s Book, of Twenty three dollars ($23.00) occasioned by an over credit of said amount.

On motion of Mr. Huntington, the above report was accepted and ordered to be placed on file, and copied on to the records.

On motion of Mr. Thomas B. Wales, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint a person to collect subscriptions from members of the Society in aid of the Benevolent Fraternity of Churches and to pay over the amount of the same to the Treasurer of that Association.

Messrs. E. F. Weld and S. L. Abbot, were appointed a Committee to collect, sort and Count the votes for officers of the Corporation for the ensuing year, and they reported as the result of the separate ballotings, the election of

Clerk.

  • Joseph H. Buckingham

Treasurer.

  • David Francis

Standing Committee.

  • Ezra Lincoln
  • David Francis
  • James T. Hayward
  • Thomas B. Wales Jr.
  • Otis Rich
  • Samuel L. Abbott
  • Horace Dupee

Committee of Finance.

  • John T. Dingley
  • George W. Wales
  • William Hayden

On motion of Mr. J. T. Stevenson, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorized to appoint a Sexton, and establish the amount to be paid for his services.

On motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington, it was

Voted That the Committee of Finance, in their [243] next Annual Report state the actual market value of the property belonging to the Corporation.

On motion of Mr. Stevenson, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorised to employ the Sexton or any other person to collect the taxes on the pews and to pay such sum for the service as in their judgment they may think proper.

On motion of Mr. Henry Cutter, the meeting was dissolved.

Attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Before me, on this, the twenty second

Suffolk S S

day of April, A.D. 1851, personally appeared Joseph H. Buckingham and made oath that he would truly record all votes passed at any and every meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation, during the time he remains in the office of Clerk thereof.

William Rogers, Justice of the Peace.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 28, 1851.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” held this day, at the office of Ezra Lincoln Esquire No 4 Court Street, there were present:

Messrs. Ezra Lincoln, James T. Hayward, Thomas B. Wales, Jr., David Francis, Otis Rich, and Samuel L. Abbot, who severally signified their acceptance of the offices to which they were elected by the Corporation, at the Annual Meeting, held on the 15th inst.

On motion of Mr. Francis, Ezra Lincoln was elected as Chairman for the ensuing year.

The Chairman nominated Messrs. Wales [244] and Hayward as the Committee to select and appoint a Sexton.

The Chairman also nominated, Messrs. Lincoln, Abbot and Hayward as the Committee on Music and the Chairman also nominated, Messrs. Wales and Rich as the Committee on Repairs, and these nominations were unanimously confirmed.

The Chairman communicated a letter dated 21st inst, from Col. Isaac H. Wright, Commander of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, asking that “the use of the Chauncy Place Meeting House may be granted to that Corps for the celebration of the Religious Services incident to the two hundred and fourteenth Anniversary, which will occur on Monday June 2d, this year, and said request was, on motion of Mr. Wales, unanimously granted.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston December 5, 1851.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” held this day at the office of Ezra Lincoln Esq. No 4 Court Street, in this city, there were present, Messrs. Lincoln, Abbott, Wales, Francis, Dupee, and Hayward.

On motion of Mr. Francis, it was

Voted That a meeting of the Proprietors be notified to be held on Sunday the fourteenth day of December instant, at the Church in Chauncy place, immediately after the Religious Services in the forenoon, to consider whether any, and if any what measures shall be [245] taken with respect to the Election of a Pastor, and That the Clerk be directed to notify such meeting, in the usual manner forthwith.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston December 15, 1851.

A special meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” having been legally warned and notified by the Clerk, was held at the Meeting House in Chauncy Place, in this city, yesterday forenoon, the fourteenth inst, at a quarter before twelve o’clock.

On motion of David Francis, Esq. the meeting was organised, by the choice of Hon. Edward Everett as Moderator.

On motion of John E. Thayer Esq. it was

Voted That Messrs. J.T. Buckingham, J.T. Hayward, William Hayden, J.T. Stevenson and C.C. Paine be appointed a Committee to take into consideration the whole subject of the selection and choice of a Pastor, and to report upon the same at an adjourned meeting to be called specially for that purpose.

The meeting was then adjourned.

Attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[246] Adjourned Special meeting of the Proprietors. Boston December 29, 1851.

A meeting of “The Proprietors of the First Church in Boston,” being an adjournment of the Special Meeting notified to be held and which was held on the fourteenth day of December instant, having been directed by the Committee appointed at said meeting, was legally notified by the Clerk of the Corporation, to be held yesterday at the meeting house in Chauncy Place in this city, immediately after the Religious Services of the forenoon.

Accordingly, at five minutes before twelve o’clock M. the meeting was held and was called to order by Hon. Edward Everett Moderator.

The Committee which was appointed to take into consideration the whole subject of the selection and election of a Pastor, and to report upon the same at an adjourned meeting to be specially called for that purpose, made, through their chairman, Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham a verbal Report, “That the Committee was unanimously of the opinion that the interests of the Society required early action for the settlement of a clergyman; and that after such inquiries, as were proper to be made, the Committee were of opinion that Mr. Hale of Worcester would be very acceptable to the members of the Parish; and that they recommend to the meeting to take the necessary steps to ascertain whether Mr. Hale would be induced to settle over us.”

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted That the meeting proceed to an informal ballot, to ascertain by written votes the preference of the Proprietors then present, as to who should be invited to take the Pastoral charge of the Society.

A Ballot was then had, the Clerk collecting the votes, and the result was that the whole number of votes was twenty nine, including one blank. Of these [247] the Rev. Edward Everett Hale, of Worcester had twenty one.

Mr. Huntington, moved to have a second informal ballot on the next Sunday, but subsequently modified his motion so as to have a second informal ballot at the present time, and this motion was agreed to.

The Clerk again collected the ballots and the result was that thirty two votes were cast, and of these, the Rev. Mr. Hale had twenty nine. No person cast more than one vote, although several Proprietors own more than one pew and several gentlemen present held more than one proxy.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was then

Voted That when this meeting adjourn, it be adjourned to meet at this same place, on the afternoon of Thursday next, January 1, 1852, at three oclock, for the purpose of balloting for a Pastor to be settled over this Church, and That the Clerk be directed to issue a notice tomorrow, to each individual proprietor in this Corporation, stating the time, and place, and object of the said adjourned meeting.

On motion of Mr. T. B. Wales, the meeting was then Adjourned.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston January 1, 1852.

A meeting of the “Proprietors of The First Church in Boston” was held by adjournment at the Meeting House in Chauncy Place in this City, at three o’clock this afternoon.

The meeting was called to order by Hon. Edward Everett, Moderator, who read the notification for the same which had been issued by the Clerk on the twenty ninth of December A.D. 1851, in pursuance of a vote passed by the Proprietors on the preceding [248] day.

The records of the last two preceding meetings were read by the Clerk.

On motion of Hon. J.T. Buckingham it was

Voted That the poll be opened, and that the Proprietors proceed to ballot, by themselves or by proxies, for a Pastor.

Messrs. John E. Thayer, Ezra Lincoln and William Hayden were appointed a Committee to collect, sort and count the votes.

The Clerk then called the names of the Proprietors, from a list furnished for that purpose by the Treasurer, and the ballots were received by the Committee.

Mr. Thayer, from the Committee subsequently, reported, that the Whole number of votes was forty nine, of which Reverend Edward Everett Hale of Worcester had forty eight. Mr. Hale was accordingly declared Elected.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted That a Committee of five, be appointed by the Moderator to communicate the result of this election to Mr. Hale, and to ask his acceptance of the office.

On motion of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham it was

Voted That the last named Committee be increased by the addition of the Moderator of this meeting, who shall be the Chairman thereof.

The Committee was then appointed and consists of the following gentlemen: Hon. Edward Everett, Chairman, William Hayden, Joseph T. Buckingham, John E. Thayer, Ezra Lincoln, James T. Hayward.

On motion of Charles C. Paine Esq. it was

Voted That the last named Committee be instructed to offer to Mr. Hale, a salary of Twenty five hundred Dollars a year, in case he accepts the office of Pastor.

On motion of T. B. Wales Esq., the meeting was dissolved. Attest,

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[249] Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston January 26, 1852.

By order of the Chairman of the Standing Committee, notice was yesterday issued by the Clerk, copies of which were posted in the porch of the Meeting House, and read from the pulpit by the officiating clergyman, calling a meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” to be held on Sunday the twenty fifth instant, at the Meeting House in Chauncy Place, immediately after the close of the forenoon services.

According to this notice, the proprietors met at twelve o’clock M. yesterday, and Reverend N. L. Frothingham was chosen Moderator.

Hon. Edward Everett, Chairman of the Committee chosen at the Special meeting which was held on the first instant, to communicate to Reverend Edward E. Hale of Worcester, his election to the office of Pastor, Reported that the Committee had corresponded with that gentleman, and submitted a copy of the letter and the original of his letter in reply.

On motion of Mr. Lincoln, the report of the Committee was accepted and the Clerk was instructed to record the correspondence and place the letters on file.

Correspondence.

(Copy) To the Reverend Edward E. Hale.

Boston 1 Jan. 1852

Dear Sir. The subscribers a committee appointed for that purpose, beg leave to enclose herewith a certified copy of the doings of the proprietors of the pews in the first Church Boston, at a legal meeting held this day at their usual place of worship in Chauncy place.

It affords us the highest satisfaction to convey to you this invitation to become the pastor of our time honored church; tendered as it is with a harmony of feeling not often witnessed on such occasions, and well calculated to encourage your acceptance.

We are sensible of the strength of the ties which must unite you to the society with which you are [250] now connected; but we trust that the opportunity of increased usefulness in a wider field of duty, will be considered by you and by them as justifying your removal.

In the earnest hope of a favorable answer, we remain Dear Sir,

Sincerely your friends

Signed

Edward Everett

William Hayden

Joseph T. Buckingham

John Eliot Thayer

Ezra Lincoln

James T. Hayward.

Boston Jan. 23, 1852.

Messrs. Edward Everett, William Hayden, Joseph T. Buckingham, John Eliot Thayer, Ezra Lincoln, James T. Hayward, a Committee of the Proprietors of the 1st Church;

Gentlemen

I had hoped to return an earlier answer to your very kind letter of the 1st instant, which enclosed to me the vote passed by the Proprietors of the First Church, on that day.

That letter, and the invitation it contained, to become the pastor of your time-honored Church, was an honor to me which I fully appreciate. It would be an honor to any man to be invited to take the place of Dr. Frothingham. At the same time, the approach to unanimity with which the invitation was extended to me, would give me every hope of indulgence towards the efforts I might make, if I should undertake so arduous a duty.

The ministry in your parish, where are many persons whom I have known from my childhood, would have for me some peculiar attractions. I need not say, also, that the tenderest ties still bind me to this city.

But, after careful consideration of the field of effort you offer me here:—with all the light granted me in answer to earnest prayer, I have decided that I must decline your invitation. The duties it proposes to me, are, in many respects, of a different character from those to which I have been accustomed. I would not withdraw from them because they are arduous, nor simply because they propose to me to leave a field of labor which I was the first to enter, and which has afforded me a happy home. But my [251] people, with a warmth of expression, which I must trust most gratefully, assure me that I am still of use in that field, and I feel that I should indulge too sanguine expectations if I supposed that my ministrations here would address directly a larger number of persons than they do there. At the same time, the circumstances of the parishes are so different that any measure of success which has as yet attended my ministry, is no warrant to me of my success with you. I cannot therefore share the hope, expressed in your letter, that in a removal I should make good the opportunities of “a wider field of duty.”

I beg you gentlemen, in communicating to the proprietors my answer, to assure them of my deep sense of the honor they have done me.

Will you accept my thanks for your courtesy in your correspondence,

And believe that the welfare of the First Church will always be deeply interesting to

Yours, in Christian brotherhood,

Edward E. Hale.13

On motion of Deacon James H. Foster, it was then

Voted That the whole subject of selecting and electing a Pastor for this Church, be referred to the Standing Committee.

On motion of Mr. Thayer the meeting was then dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday March 22, 1852.

At a meeting of the Standing Committee of the “Proprietors of the first Church in Boston,” held this day at the office of Ezra Lincoln Esq. No 4 Court Street, Boston, present Messrs. Francis, Hayward, Abbott, Rich, Lincoln and Dupee.

It was Voted That Mr. Abbott be a special sub-committee to proceed to Northampton and ascertain by personal intercourse with Reverend Rufus Ellis whether any arrangement can be made with that gentleman in reference to a permanent settlement as Pastor of the First Church [252] provided he should receive an invitation from the Proprietors.

It was also Voted That the proceedings of the Standing Committee at this meeting be considered as of a nature not to be made public.

The meeting was then adjourned to meet at the same place on Saturday next, the 27th inst at nine o’clock A.M.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Meeting of the Standing Committee. Saturday March 27, 1852.

No quorum being present, no business is transacted at this meeting.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Special meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday April 19, 1852.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” was held this day at the office of the Chairman No 4 Court Street in Boston.

Present, Messrs. Lincoln, Francis, Wales and Hayward.

The Chairman presented a draft of the annual report of the Standing Committee which being read was adopted, and ordered to be presented at the Annual meeting of the Corporation which is to be held tomorrow.

Meeting Dissolved, attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Annual Meeting. Tuesday April 20, 1852.

The Annual meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston,” having been legally notified by the Clerk, was held, according to the provisions of the Bye laws, on this the third Tuesday in April, at the meeting house in Chauncey Place, at half past three o’clock in the afternoon.

Having been called to order by Mr. Lincoln, chairman of the Standing Committee, the meeting was organized by the election of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham as Moderator.

The reading of the records was dispensed [253] with.

The Annual Report of the Standing Committee was then read by Mr. Lincoln, the Chairman, accepted, ordered to be recorded and placed on file. It was as follows:

“Annual Report of the Standing Committee of the First Church

“In obedience to the requirements of the By laws of the “First Church” the Standing Committee beg leave to submit their Annual Statement of the disbursements and financial condition of the Society.

The account of the Treasurer shows that there was a balance in his hands

at the time of the last Annual meeting of

$1288.24

That he has received

For taxes on Pews

$2182.83

For interest on Stock and Mortgages

being the permanent fund

1700.

Rent of School Rooms and Cellar

395.

4277.83

$5566.07

That he has disbursed

To various Clergymen for supplying the pulpit

$810.00

For Expenses of the Choir

1000–

For Services of the Sexton

155.00

For fuel, printing etc.

102.18

For repairs, slating etc.

127.04

For taxes, insurance

49.33

For cost of accomodating Clergymen at David Reed’s

106.00

For cost of collecting Pew rents taxes etc.

43.66

2393.21

Leaving a balance in the hands of the treasurer of

$3172.86

There is due on Sundry Pews

219.50

which if collected would make the available means amount to

$3392.36

The Permanent Fund of the Society remains as it was last year and consists of Notes secured by Mortgages against

Dr. Putnam and Mrs. Davis for

$21,000.00

40 shares in the Merchants Bank Stock

4,000.00

40 shares in the Connecticut River Railroad stock

4,000.00

In all

$29,000.00

The Committee are not aware of any outstanding bills against the Society.

All of which is respectfully submitted. For the Committee

Ezra Lincoln Chairman.

[254] Mr. Hayden, from the Committee on Finance, submitted the following Report.

By a vote passed at the last annual meeting, the Committee of Finance were directed to state, in this Annual Report, the actual market value of the property belonging to the Corporation, and the following statement is submitted, in compliance with that vote.

Note of Dr. Putnam, secured by mortgage on House in Summer Street

$11,000.00

Note of Mrs. Davis, secured by mortgage on House in Summer Street

10,000.00

Forty shares in the Merchants Bank, Boston—par value $100 each, market value 9½ per cent advance

4,380.00

Forty shares in the Connecticut River Rail Road, market value $60 per share

2,400.00

Balance of money in the Treasurer’s hands

3,172.86

Total value of disposable property

$30,952.86

Besides the above property, the Proprietors own their Church, and the land under and adjoining the same—and thirty three Pews in the Church—the value of which the Committee have not thought it necessary to estimate.

Respectfully submitted

William Hayden

Committee of Finance.

Chauncy Place

Geo. W. Wales

April 20th 1852.

On motion of Mr. T. B. Wales, this report was accepted and ordered to be placed on file.

Mr. Hayden, from the same Committee, also submitted the following Report,

Chauncy Place

April 20, 1852

The Committee of Finance report that they have duly examined the accounts of the Treasurer of the Proprietors of this Church—and that they find the same accurately kept and cast, and duly vouched—and that the balance in his hands, on the 15th instant, the close of the last financial year was $3,172.86.

For the Committee

William Hayden Chairman.

On motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington this Report was accepted and ordered to be placed on file.

The meeting then proceeded to the election of officers for the Ensuing Year, and a Committee having been appointed to collect, sort, and count the votes it appeared that [255] Joseph H. Buckingham was chosen Clerk. The usual oath of office was then administered to the Clerk by the Moderator.

The following named gentlemen were then chosen and declared elected as the Standing Committee: Edward Everett, Nathaniel L. Frothingham, Samuel L. Abbott, Horace Dupee, David Francis, Otis Rich, J. T. W. Sargent.

The following named gentlemen were then chosen and declared elected as the Committee of Finance: J. T. Dingley, George W. Wales, James T. Hayward.

The Committee to collect the votes reported that David Francis was unanimously chosen, and he was thereupon declared elected Treasurer of the Corporation.

On motion of Mr. T. B. Wales, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to appoint a person to collect subscriptions from members of this Society in aid of the Benevolent Fraternity of Churches and to pay over the amount of the same to the Treasurer of that Association.

On motion of Mr. David Francis, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be authorised to pay, out of the funds in his hands, the sum of Twenty Dollars to the managers of the last Unitarian Festival given in this City, in aid of the Expenses thereof.

On motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington, after some discussion and an amendment of his original proposition, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be instructed, to make a permanent investment of Two thousand dollars of the funds at present in his hands, under advice and with consent of the Standing Committee.

On motion of Mr. T. B. Wales Jr. it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorised to appoint a Sexton and establish his salary for the ensuing year.

A motion was made by Mr. T. B. Wales, to [256] authorise the Standing Committee to make all necessary repairs on the outside of the Church, and it was subsequently withdrawn. The same motion was renewed by Mr. Ezra Lincoln, and after some discussion, on motion of Mr. Edward F. Weld, it was indefinitely postponed.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Saturday April 24, 1852.

A meeting of the newly elected Standing Committee of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” having been notified by the Clerk, was held at his office, No 24 Railroad Exchange, in Court Square, in Boston, at ten o’clock this day. There were present, Messrs. Everett, Frothingham, Francis, and Sargent, who severally signified their acceptance of the offices to which they had been elected.

Hon. Edward Everett was elected Chairman of the Standing Committee for the year.

Messrs. Francis and Sargent, were nominated and confirmed as the Committee to appoint and direct all matters in relation to Sexton.

Messrs. Frothingham, Abbott and Sargent were nominated and Confirmed as the Committee on Music.

Messrs. Rich and Dupee were appointed, on nomination of the Chairman, as the Committee on Repairs.

On motion of Mr. Francis, it was

Voted That Thomas B. Wales Esq. be requested by the Treasurer to collect, as he has in former years, such subscriptions as may be possible for the benefit of the Benevolent Fraternity of Churches.

The subject of Supplying the Pulpit was referred to Messrs. Everett and Frothingham.

[257] On motion of Mr. Francis, the Committee on Repairs was authorised to make a settlement with Mr. Atkinson, a tenant of one of the School Rooms under the meeting house, with full power.

On motion of Mr. Everett it was

Voted That Regular meetings of the Standing Committee be held, in future and until further order, at four o’clock on the afternoons of the last Saturday in each month, at his residence in Summer Street.

The meeting was then adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of Standing Committee. May 29, 1852.

Present Messrs. Everett, Francis, Rich and Abbot.

Dr. Abbot was chosen Secretary pro tem.

A note was read from the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company requesting permission to use the Meeting House of the Society on the occasion of their next anniversary, the 1st Monday of June. Voted that the request be acceded to on condition that the Organist and Choir of the Society be employed on that occasion.

Mr. Francis stated that he had had an application from the Organist to purchase a pew in the gallery of the Church. Voted that Mr. Francis have full power to effect such a sale.

Mr. Francis stated that he had let the room under the Church formerly occupied by Mr. Atkinson, to Mr. French.

On motion of Mr. Francis voted That iron fences be erected to enclose the empty space on each side of the Church tower at the expense of $243.

The Meeting was adjourned.

Attest S. L. Abbot, Secretary pro tem.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Saturday June 26, 1852.

An adjourned meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the house of the Chairman, at four o’clock P.M. this day. Present Messrs. Everett, Francis, Frothingham, Abbott, and Sargent.

On motion of Mr. Francis, the subject of making suitable repairs on the Organ, was referred to the Committee on Music, with full powers.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, Mr. Francis was requested to ascertain what alterations are required in the Furnaces, and the probable expense that will be necessary to improve the heating [258] apparatus for the church.

Mr. Francis, from the Committee on that subject reported that Mr. Dodd had been engaged as Sexton for the present Year at the same salary as for last year. Adjourned.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Owing to the absence from the City, of several members of the Standing Committee, and in consequence of the illness of others, no quorum could be conveniently obtained for the proposed regular meetings on the last Saturdays of July, August and September.

And there being no business calling for any special action of the Committee, no meeting was held during those months.

Special Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday October 7, 1852.

A special meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston was held at twelve o’clock noon this day at the residence of Mr. Frothingham in Summer Street. Present, all the members of the Board except Mr. Everett.

Owing to the absence of the Chairman the meeting was called to order by the Clerk and Rev. Mr. Frothingham was elected Chairman pro tem. It was Voted unanimously that a Special Meeting of the Corporation be notified by the Clerk, to be held immediately after the close of the Afternoon Service, on Sunday next, October 10th inst.

Voted That the Clerk be instructed to issue notice to Each Proprietor, and send the same to his residence where it can be done; and to have copies of the notice distributed in the Pews of the Church on Sunday forenoon.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Corporation. Boston Sunday October 10, 1852.

A special meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” having been legally notified by the Clerk, according to the directions of the Standing Committee, was held at [259] the Meeting House in Chauncey Place, this afternoon immediately after the services of the day were closed.

Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham was chosen Moderator.

Hon. Edward Everett, Chairman of the Standing Committee, made a verbal report of the proceedings of that board as to the selection of Ministers to supply the pulpit up to the present time, and recommended as the unanimous voice of the Committee, that the Proprietors invite Mr. Francis Tiffany to become permanent Pastor of the Society.

Reverend Mr. Frothingham, Reverend Charles Brooks, William Hayden Esq. and the Moderator also addressed the meeting.

Mr. Everett moved that the Standing Committee be requested to invite, forthwith, Mr. Francis Tiffany14 to become Pastor of the First Church in Boston.

On motion of Ralph Huntington Esq. it was

Voted That the question on this motion be taken by Ballot, the Clerk Calling the list of Proprietors and each one answering Yea or Nay as his or her name is called.

The Clerk then called the list of Proprietors in the order in which the Pews are numbered, beginning with number one, And it appeared that Sixty Pews were represented by proprietors, either in person or by proxy, no one individual by the By laws, being allowed to cast more than three votes, and all these votes were in the affirmative. So it was declared that the Proprietors had unanimously

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested, forthwith, to invite Mr. Francis Tiffany to become Pastor of the First Church in Boston.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham it was then

Voted That when this meeting Adjourn, it be adjourned to meet again at such time as the Standing Committee shall direct.

The meeting was then adjourned.

attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[260] The stated meeting of the Standing Committee at Mr. Everett’s house on the last Saturday (the 29th) of October was merely informal and no quorum being present was not called to order.

Special Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston November 3, 1852.

A Special Meeting of the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been notified by the Clerk, was held at the house of Rev. Dr. Frothingham in Summer Street at twelve o’clock noon this day.

Present, Messrs. Frothingham, Rich, Francis, Dupee, Sargent.

The Chairman being absent, Mr. Rich was chosen Chairman pro tem. Mr. Frothingham stated that the object of the meeting was to hear the letter received by the Chairman from Mr. Tiffany, declining to accept of the office of Pastor, and also to consult upon some further measures as to the settlement of a Pastor.

The letter was read and laid on the table.

Mr. Frothingham explained certain views entertained upon this subject by him, which were considered and fully agreed to by every member of the Committee who was present. Mr. Frothingham also stated that he was instructed by Mr. Everett to say that he also coincided in opinion with the majority.

On motion of Mr. Sargent it was voted that when this meeting adjourn, it be adjourned to meet again at the same place at twelve o’clock, noon, on Saturday next, November sixth.

On motion of Mr. Sargent, it was also Voted that in the mean time Mr. Frothingham be requested to take such measures as in his judgment he may deem Expedient to further the views of the Committee, as they had been unanimously Expressed, with power, and to report at the adjourned meeting.

The meeting was then Adjourned.

attest, J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[261] Adjourned Special Meeting of Standing Committee. Boston November 6, 1852.

The Committee met at 12 oClock noon this day according to adjournment, at Mr. Frothinghams in Summer Street.

Present all the members except Mr. Everett.

Mr. Rich, as Chairman pro tem., called the meeting to order, and Mr. Frothingham made a verbal report of his proceedings since the third instant, and requested further time, which was granted.

After a full expression of the views of each member present, on the subject of settling a Pastor, it was

Voted That when this meeting adjourn, it be adjourned to meet again whenever called together by the Clerk under the direction of Mr. Frothingham.

Adjourned.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Special Meeting of Standing Committee. Boston November 11, 1852.

The Committee, having been notified by the Clerk according to the directions given by the last recorded vote on the 6th inst. met at the house of Mr. Frothingham at 12 oClock noon this day.

Present all the members except Mr. Everett.

Mr. Rich, Chairman pro-tem called the meeting to order, and Mr. Frothingham made a further verbal Report, communicating the fact that he had received a letter from Reverend Thomas Starr King in which that gentleman asked some information respecting the vacant pews and the number of pews for sale or to let in Chauncy Place Meeting House;—also that there was now but little doubt that Mr. King would settle as Pastor of the First Church, if his own people could be accomodated with seats and pews on reasonable terms, and the Proprietors of the First Church should give him a unanimous call.15

The Treasurer submitted a plan and schedule of the pews in the meeting house with the taxes assessed marked against each, with the names of the present owners.

The Committee proceeded to affix to the Pews owned by the Corporation the sums at [262] which they may be sold. It was then

Voted That Mr. Frothingham be instructed to communicate to Mr. King that the Proprietors own certain pews (as per schedule) which will be sold to members of the Hollis Street Society at the valuation affixed to them, or will be let for the taxes heretofore assessed with the addition of eight per cent on the amount of valuation.

The Clerk was directed to prepare a list of the pews so offered for sale or to let, to be communicated with the above vote.

It was voted That when this meeting adjourn it be adjourned to meet again whenever called together by the Clerk under direction of Mr. Frothingham.

Voted That the Committee on Repairs ascertain the expense of providing Gas Lights for the pulpit and Organ.

Adjourned,

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Special Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston November 16, 1852.

The Committee having been notified according to the vote of the 6th inst. met at the House of Mr. Frothingham this day at twelve o’clock noon.

Present Messrs. Rich, Frothingham, Dupee, Sargent, Abbott.

Mr. Rich, Chairman pro tem, in the Chair.

Mr. Rich from the Committee on Repairs made a verbal report on the subject of supplying Gas to light the Pulpit and Organ, and on motion of Mr. Frothingham it was

Voted That the Committee on Repairs be instructed to procure Gas fixtures and make all the necessary arrangements for lighting the Pulpit and Organ with Gas.

Mr. Frothingham communicated the contents of the note which he had received from the Reverend Mr. King, and after considerable consultation it was

Voted That it is Expedient for the Committee to ascertain, by personal application, so far as practicable the views of each individual proprietor of the Pews in the Meeting House on the question of giving an invitation to Reverend Thomas Starr King to become Pastor of the Society.

After making arrangements by which each member present agreed to call [263] personally on certain Proprietors, the meeting adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Special Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston November 20, 1852.

The Committee having been notified in the usual manner, met at Mr. Frothingham’s house this afternoon at half past three oclock, Mr. Rich, Chairman pro tem in the Chair.

The different members made report verbally of the result of their personal application to the Proprietors on the subject of settling a Pastor, from which it appeared that nearly every proprietor had been called upon and that so far as could be ascertained nearly all the Proprietors cordially approved of giving Mr. King a call if it should be thought proper, in consideration of the circumstances.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, the Clerk was directed to notify an adjourned meeting of the Proprietors to be held tomorrow at the Meeting House immediately after the afternoon service, by placing notifications in the pews, in the morning.

It was Voted that Mr. Frothingham be requested to communicate, at that meeting, in the name of this Committee, the reason for calling the Proprietors together, and the views of the Committee.

The letter of Mr. Tiffany declining the invitation of the Proprietors to become the Pastor of the First Church, was taken from the table and committed to Mr. Frothingham for him to communicate to the Proprietors at the meeting tomorrow afternoon. Adjourned.

Attest. J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Special Meeting of the Corporation. Boston, November 21, 1852.

The Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been notified by notices signed by the Clerk, placed in Each Pew in the Meeting House, and by a notice read from the pulpit, met at an adjourned meeting at the Meeting House in Chauncey Place, this afternoon, immediately after [264] the afternoon service, Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham, Moderator, in the Chair.

The records of the Meeting held on the 10th of October last, were read by the Clerk.

Rev. Mr. Frothingham, in behalf of the Standing Committee, reported that Mr. Tiffany had declined accepting the invitation from the Proprietors to become their Pastor, and read his letter to that effect.

On Motion of Deacon Foster, it was

Ordered That the letter of the Committee to Mr. Tiffany, communicating the invitation, and his answer thereto, be copied into the records of the Corporation and placed on file.

Mr. Frothingham, in behalf of the Standing Committee made a verbal report of the doings of the Committee since the 10th of October last and offered the following:

Voted That the Proprietors of the First Church are ready and desirous to invite the Reverend Thomas Starr King to be their Pastor, as soon as they are assured that such a step would meet with the harmonious concurrence of the Society in Hollis Street.

Deacon Foster, moved that the further consideration of this subject be postponed, and referred to an adjourned meeting to be held on Wednesday the first day of December next.

Ralph Huntington Esq. seconded this motion.

The motion for postponement was negatived.

The Vote proposed by Mr. Frothingham was then adopted.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was Voted that when this meeting adjourn, it be adjourned to meet again at this place at such time as the Standing Committee may appoint. Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

To the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston.

Gentlemen, Your invitation to me to become Pastor of the Chauncey Place Society, reached [265] me some few days since. I feel deeply grateful for the Expression of your confidence and esteem necessarily conveyed in such an act.

At the time of the call of your Society reached me I had already written an acceptance of a similar invitation to become Pastor of the Unitarian Church in Springfield. My conviction had grown daily stronger and stronger, that it would be better for me to commence my labors as a minister in the country, rather than in a City. And though, on receiving the account of your proceedings, I kept back my letter and subjected the matter to renewed consideration, still, as the final result, my opinion remains the same.

I feel myself, therefore under the disagreeable necessity of declining your invitation. The heartiness and unanimity, which have marked your proceedings; the kindness and indulgence, with which I know I should have been received among you; and the urgent advice I have received from some of my most reliable friends to accept your call without a moment’s hesitation,—render this necessity more than ordinarily painful to me. Again permit me to thank you warmly for the honor you have conferred upon me. It is my earnest desire, that the mutual feelings of respect and regard, which have hitherto existed between us may continue unimpaired. My warmest sympathies will always follow the fortunes of your Society. May I not believe that yours also will accompany me in my course?

With sincere regard, believe me, very truly Yours in the fellowship and privileges of the Gospel.

(Signed) Francis Tiffany.

No copy of the letter from the Committee to Mr. Tiffany was furnished.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Saturday, November 27, 1852.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this afternoon at the house of Mr. Frothingham, in Summer Street. Present, Messrs. Frothingham, Rich, Dupee, Sargent and Abbott.

Mr. Rich, Chairman pro tem, in the Chair.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was

Voted That the offer (as per vote of the 11th inst. [266]) to sell or let the pews belonging to the Corporation, to members of the Hollis Street Society, was predicated upon the acceptance by Mr. King of the office of Pastor, and that the time within which the said offer may be accepted, is hereby limited to Sixty Days from the date of his acceptance.

Mr. Rich, from the Committee on Repairs, reported verbally, in relation to the introduction of Gas, to the Pulpit and Organ, that every thing was ready for the fixtures for burners, but that the proper ornaments cannot be had except at Philadelphia. Also, that the Gas Pipe has been introduced into the East Gallery of sufficient size to be carried round and to light the whole church with Gas if it should be needed at some future day.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, the Committee was instructed to carry out their plans as proposed.

A communication from an Organ Builder, respecting repairs which are necessary to be made upon the Organ, was read and referred to the Committee on Music, with full power to have such repairs made as, in their judgment may be expedient.

Adjourned.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

No meeting of the Standing Committee was held on the last Saturday in December, in consequence of its being Christmas Day, several members being absent, and there being no business requiring attention.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Saturday, January 29, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this afternoon, at the house of Mr. Frothingham, in Summer Street. Present, Messrs. Abbott, Dupee, Sargent and Frothingham.

Mr. Abbott, was elected Chairman pro tem.

Mr. Frothingham communicated a letter from Rev. Thomas Starr King, stating that the Hollis Street Society had sold a number of pews in their meeting house, and offered to raise his salary, so that he should stay there and not come to the First Church.

Mr. Sargent, from the Committee on Music, reported [267] verbally as to repairs needed to be made on the Organ, and that a person had been engaged to do the work.

Mr. Frothingham communicated verbally a request from Miss Whitney, a tenant of one of the School rooms under the meeting house, for a reduction of rent, and the subject was referred to Messrs. Rich and Abbott, to consider and report to the Standing Committee.

Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of Standing Committee. Boston Friday, February 18, 1853.

A special meeting of the Standing Committee was called at the request of Mr. Frothingham, to be held at his house this afternoon at half past three o’clock.

Present, only Messrs. Sargent and Frothingham. In consequence of their being no quorum, the meeting was adjourned to tomorrow afternoon at four o’clock.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of Standing Committee. Boston Saturday, February 19, 1853.

An adjourned meeting of the Standing Committee was held at Mr. Frothingham’s house in Summer Street, this afternoon, at four o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Abbott, Dupee, Sargent, and Frothingham.

Mr. Sargent, was elected Chairman pro tem.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham it was

Voted That a meeting of the Proprietors be called for tomorrow afternoon, to be held at the meeting house, immediately after the afternoon service, and that the Clerk be instructed to notify the same, by a notice to be read from the pulpit by the officiating clergyman, forenoon and afternoon. Also Voted That the Committee recommend to the Proprietors, at the said meeting, that the Rev. Rufus Ellis of Northampton be invited to become Pastor of the First Church.

On motion of Mr. Dupee, Voted that the Clerk be instructed to consult Mr. Rich, on the subject, and obtain his concurrence in the above arrangement, in order that the action of the Committee may be unanimous,—Mr. Everett being absent from the city, and Mr. Francis being unable to act in consequence of severe illness. Also that if Mr. Rich is opposed to this action the [268] Clerk is instructed not to call the meeting, but to consider the preceding votes null and void. Adjourned.

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Special Meeting of the Corporation. Boston Sunday, February 20, 1853.

An adjourned Special meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been notified from the Pulpit according to the directions of the Standing Committee, was held this afternoon at the Meeting House in Chauncey Place, and it was called to order by the Clerk.

In consequence of the absence of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham, the Moderator, Hon. Charles Francis Adams, was elected Moderator pro tem.

Mr. Rich, from the Standing Committee, reported, that the Committee had reason to think that the Rev. Rufus Ellis, of Northampton, would be acceptable to the Proprietors, as Pastor of the Society; and that although they did not know that he would accept an invitation to that effect, they had strong hopes, from circumstances which had been communicated to them, that he might be induced to do so.

Mr. Frothingham, from the same Committee stated that the Committee was not prepared to offer any vote on the subject, but they were satisfied with the fitness of Mr. Ellis for the office and were unanimous in recommending him to the Proprietors.

William Hayden Esq. proposed the following.

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to communicate with the Reverend Rufus Ellis of Northampton, with full power to invite him, if they see fit, to become Pastor of this Society.

This motion, being seconded by T. B. Wales Esq. was submitted to the meeting and passed unanimously.

On motion of John E. Thayer Esq. it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to communicate with the Hollis Street Society and send Greeting to them our cordial congratulations upon the settlement of the difficulties in their society, and their prospects of prosperity for the future.

On motion of Mr. Rich it was

Voted That when this meeting adjourn it be adjourned to meet again when the [269] Standing Committee shall have further communication to make on the subject of a Pastor. Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston February 21, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at Mr. Frothingham’s house, in Summer St. this day at twelve o’clock noon. Present,—Messrs. Sargent, Abbott, Dupee and Frothingham. Mr. Sargent was chosen Chairman pro tem.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was Voted That a letter be addressed by to-day’s mail to Reverend Mr. Ellis, at Northampton, stating the action of the Corporation at yesterday’s meeting, and asking him to become Pastor of the First Church.

On motion of Mr. Abbott, it was Voted that Reverend Mr. Frothingham be a committee to write and forward said letter.

Mr. Frothingham submitted a draft of a letter to be addressed to the Hollis Street Society, in accordance with the vote of the Corporation, at yesterday’s meeting, which was approved, and it was Voted That the same be signed by every member of the Committee, and sent as directed.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, the Committee on that subject, had full power to make such arrangements as they shall see fit, with regard to the Rent of the school Room occupied by Miss Whitney.

Adjourned, Attest

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston February 27, 1853.

A meeting was held, of the Standing Committee, this afternoon at half past four o’clock, at Mr. Frothingham’s house in Summer Street.

Present—Messrs. Rich, Abbott, Sargent, Dupee and Frothingham.

Mr. Rich in the chair. Mr. Frothingham reported that he had notified Rev. Mr. Ellis of the vote of the Committee, requesting him to become Pastor; and communicated a letter of enquiry which he had received from Mr. Ellis. [270] Mr. Rich prepared a letter in reply which was adopted, and having been signed by every member of the Committee present, was directed to be forwarded to Mr. Ellis by the first mail.

Mr. Frothingham, presented the letter of Greeting which had been prepared, to be sent to the Hollis Street Society, signed by Messrs. Everett and Francis, the absent members. The letter was then signed by all the other members of the Committee, and countersigned by the Clerk, and left with Mr. Frothingham to be forwarded to its destination.

Mr. Abbott, from the Committee on that subject, reported that he had, in accordance with the power vested in the Committee at the last meeting, agreed with Miss Whitney that the rent of the School room occupied by her, under the Church, shall be at the rate of One hundred and twenty five dollars a year, from and after January the first 1853, and his report was approved.

Adjourned, attest.

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston, March 12, 1853.

The Meeting was held at Mr. Frothingham’s house at 12 o’Clock, M. Present, Messrs. Rich, Abbott, Sargent, Dupee and Frothingham.

Mr. Rich was the Chairman, and Mr. Frothingham was appointed clerk of the meeting. Mr. F. read a Letter from Rev. Rufus Ellis, of Northampton, announcing his acceptance of the Invitation of the First Church to become their pastor. Whereupon it was unanimously agreed, that notifications should be placed in the pews on the next day, Lord’s Day, calling a General Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church on the day following, Monday, March 14th at 4 o’Clock, P.M. This notice was also to be read from the pulpit on the morrow. Arrangements were made for carrying the proposed object into effect, and the meeting was then Adjourned. attest

N. L. Frothingham, Clerk pro tem.

Adjourned Special meeting of the Proprietors. Boston March 14, 1853.

An adjourned special meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, was held at the meeting house in Chauncey Place this day at 4 o’clock P.M.

Hon. Joseph H. Buckingham, [271] the moderator, in the Chair.

In consequence of the absence of the Clerk, Edward R. Hall was chosen Clerk pro tem, and duly sworn.

Mr. Frothingham, from the Standing Committee, reported that the Rev. Rufus Ellis accepted the office of pastor, and communicated the letter of the Committee to him and his answer, which were read and ordered to be recorded and place on file.

(Copy.)

Letter to Rev. Rufus Ellis.

Boston February 21, 1853

My dear Sir:

At a meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church held in the Meeting-house yesterday, Hon. Charles Francis Adams in the Chair, it was voted unanimously, That the Standing Committee should be requested to communicate with you, having full power to invite you to become the pastor of our Church. The Standing Committee do now therefore, in their name, respectfully invite you to assume the Pastoral office among us.

We do not think it necessary or becoming, at the present time, to go beyond the immediate object of the Commission which it is so agreeable to all of us to perform. We shall await with deep interest your reply and earnestly hoping that it will be favorable to our.

On behalf of the Committee.

(Copy)

Mr. Ellis’s Answer.

Northampton

8 March 1853.

My Dear Sir:

I have endeavored to consider with care and in all its aspects your very important subject to which, in behalf of the Committee of the First Church in Boston, you have directed my attention, and I am now prepared to say that I accept the invitation to assume the Pastoral Office amongst you.

I must confess that I am not free from serious misgivings as to my ability to justify the Confidence with which I have been honored, and that I am rather oppressed by the weight of a new responsibility, than elated by any anticipations of [272] success. I hope however that these misgivings will foster humility and a reliance upon a Wise and Good Providence, without sensibly impairing my courage and energy.

I shall greatly need and am persuaded that I shall have the most earnest co-operation of the Church and Society.

Strong in this conviction and mindful of those Divine Promises which relate rather to the Word than to the feeble instruments that are appointed for its application, I shall trust that my ministry will not be wholly without fruits.

Sincerely Yours,

(signed) Rufus Ellis.

Rev. Dr. Frothingham.

It was then Voted That the Pastor’s salary be fixed at Three thousand dollars per annum.

Voted As the wish of the Proprietors of the First Church, that the installation of the Rev. Mr. Ellis should be solemnized at as early a day as may suit his convenience; and that the Standing Committee be requested to make arrangements to that effect, and report at the annual meeting in April.

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorized to signify to Mr. Ellis the willingness of the Parish, that he should reside in Northampton until Sept. 1st.

Voted That the Standing Committee and Treasurer be authorized to make such disposition, in regard to prepayment of salary as they may deem expedient.

Voted That the meeting be adjourned.

Edward R. Hall Clerk pro tem.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston March 26, 1853.

At a meeting of the Committee of Chauncey Place. Church held at Rev. Dr. Frothingham’s house Saturday March 26th 1853—4 P.M. A communication was submitted by the Chairman Mr. Rich from Mr. Boyd, with regard to the storage of merchandise in Chauncey Place cellar, from which it was stated, certain thefts had been made of Ale, to the amount of $86.67—Eight six—67/100 Dollars.

The whole subject was referred to a Committee of two, Mr. Rich and Mr. Sargent, with full power to act in the matter.

The Committee agreeably to the power given to them by the action of the last meeting of The Proprietors

Voted That Dr. Frothingham be a Committee of one to make all the Clerical arrangements, with regard to the approaching Ordination of Rev. Rufus Ellis of Northampton.

[273] Voted That Mr. Sargent, and Dr. Abbott, be a Committee, to consider the expediency of an Entertainment, and if any, what its character, and to report upon the subject at a future meeting; and at their earliest convenience.

Voted That Deacon Foster, be invited to be associated with Rev. Dr. Frothingham, with regard to the approaching Ordination of Rev. Rufus Ellis.

J. T. W. S.16 Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 16, 1853.

At a meeting of the Committee of the Chauncey place church held at Rev. Dr. Frothingham’s at 4 p.m.

The Chairman Mr. Rich submitted a Report which was adopted and it was

Voted To present the same at the Proprietors meeting.

Voted That the Report of the Committee with regard to the Entertainment, be accepted and submitted to the Proprietors at the Annual Meeting.

J. T. W. S. Clerk.

Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston April 19, 1853.

The annual meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held at the Church in Chauncey Place this day at 4 Oclock P.M., according to Notification.

In the absence of the Clerk the meeting was called to order by Mr. Otis Rich. Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham was called to the chair, and Edward F. Weld chosen clerk pro tem, and duly sworn. Mr. Rich, Chairman pro tem, of the Standing Committee presented the Annual Report, which upon being read, was accepted and ordered to be recorded and placed on file. Mr. Rich likewise presented the Report of the receipts and disbursements of the late Treasurer—he having deceased while in office. Viz.

1852 April 1st Amount on hand

$3172.86

Amount of all receipts for the year

3549.90

6722.76

Amt of disbursements were for City stock City Stock

$2053.33

Expenses of Society

2945.69

4999.02

leaving a balance in the Treasury of

$1723.74

This Report was accepted and ordered to be placed on file. The Report of the Finance Committee was received—accepted and ordered to be placed [274] on file. The meeting then proceeded to the choice of Officers. Mr. George W. Wales was appointed a committee to receive, sort and count the votes for Clerk and he reported the election of Joseph H. Buckingham. Messrs. Wales and Abbott were appointed a committee to receive the votes for Standing Committee for the ensuing year and they reported the choice of Messrs. Edward Everett, Samuel L. Abbott, William Hayden, J. T. W. Sargent, Otis Rich, N. L. Frothingham and Horace Dupee.

The next business was the choice of Treasurer; the same committee were requested to receive the votes and they reported the choice of Edward F. Weld for that office. Messrs. George W. Wales, John T. Dingley and Nathaniel B. Doggett were chosen Finance Committee.

The Standing Committee were requested to appoint some suitable person to collect subscription to be paid to the Treasurer of the “American Unitarian Association.”

Voted To pay Twenty (20) Dollars towards the expense of the Unitarian Festival.

Voted That the Standing Committee appoint a Sexton and fix the amount of compensation to be paid for said service.

Upon motion of Mr. Ebenezer Chadwick the Chairman and Clerk pro tem, were appointed a committee to see that the records be attended to and that the Reports of the back meetings, not recorded be duly placed upon record.

Messrs. Sargent and Abbott a sub-committee of the Standing Committee to whom had been referred the expediency of an entertainment to the Rev. Clergy and Delegates, also to the Gentlemen Proprietors and Pew Holders upon the occasion of the Installation of the Rev. Rufus Ellis of Northampton “reported for the consideration of the Proprietors, a recommendation that such Entertainment should be provided, and those gentlemen were instructed to provide the same and it was

Voted unanimously That the Treasurer be authorized to pay the expense. No other business being before the meeing upon motion of John Chadwick the meeting was dissolved.

attest Edward F. Weld Clerk pro tem.

[275] Commonwealth of Massachusetts Suffolk S.S.

Before me on this the twenty seventh day of April A.D. 1853, personally appeared Joseph H. Buckingham, and made oath that he would truly record all votes passed at any regular meeting of the Corporation of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of the same during the time he should remain in the office of Clerk thereof.

Horatio Woodman

Justice of the Peace.

[276] It will be seen that the Society has added to its invested fund, during the past year, the sum of $2000 in City Script, and has beside available funds to the amount of over $2000.

The Standing Committee, in concluding their Report; would take the opportunity to congratulate the Society upon the favorable condition of their finances and the prospects of future prosperity of the Society.

By order of the Standing Committee.

Otis Rich Chairman pro tem.

Organization of the Standing Committee. Boston April 27, 1853.

The gentlemen elected as Standing Committee of the First Church in Boston, at the Annual Meeting of the Corporation on the 19th inst. met at the house of Hon. Edward Everett, in Summer Street, this evening.

Present, the whole board except Mr. Sargent. At half past 7 oClock the Clerk called the meeting to order, and on motion of Mr. Rich, Hon. Edward Everett was chosen Chairman, of the Committee.

Mr. Abbott, from the Committee appointed by the Proprietors to provide an entertainment for the Delegates etc. on the occasion of the coming Installation of Mr. Ellis, made a verbal report, that Mr. Smith had been engaged to provide a dinner at Chapman Hall in School Street, and his Report was accepted.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham it was

Voted That the Members of the Society and pewholders, be requested to meet on Wednesday morning next, in the basement of the Meeting house, at half past ten o’clock.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That Messrs. Sargent and Abbott be a Committee of this board to make such further arrangements as may be necessary for the occasion, and that the Committee cause printed programme of the arrangements for Wednesday next, to be distributed in all the pews of the meeting house on Sunday next.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted that the Broad Aisle pews be [277] reserved, on Wednesday next, for the Ordaining Council and the Proprietors and members of the Society.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted That the Committee of Arrangements be requested to invite a sufficient number of gentlemen to act as Marshals, on the occasion.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Committee on Music have full power to make such arrangements as they think expedient in relation to a dinner or other entertainment for the Organist and Choir.

The Chairman announced the appointment of the following sub-Committees, and it was confirmed by the board,

  • On the Sexton Messrs. Hayden and Sargent.
  • On Music Messrs. Frothingham, Abbott and Sargent.
  • On Repairs Messrs. Rich and Dupee.

On motion of Mr. Rich it was

Voted That the Clerk be directed to place upon the Records a copy of the Letter Missive sent to the Hollis Street Society on the 27th February last. On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted That Messrs. Hayden and Rich be a Committee to receive the money and other property of the Corporation from the legal representatives of the late Treasurer, and place them in the hands of the Treasurer elected at the Annual Meeting on the 19th inst.

On motion of Mr. Hayden it was

Voted That when this meeting adjourn it be adjourned to meet again in the basement of the Meeting house, on Wednesday next at 10 oClock A.M.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee will hold regular monthly meetings on the last Saturday of every month at four o’Clock P.M. at the house of Mr. Everett, until further order, and without further notification. Adjourned.

attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

[278] (Copy.)

Boston February 24, 1853

The First Church to the Church in Hollis Street sends Greeting.

Brethren,

Among the last recorded Votes of the Proprietors of the First Church, stands the following:—

“Voted, That the Proprietors of the First Church are ready and desirous to invite the Rev. Thomas Starr King to be their Pastor, as soon as they are assured that such a step would meet with the harmonious concurrence of the Society in Hollis Street.”

You have always been well assured that this vote was passed with no other than a friendly intent;—not to take from you your valued minister, but only to secure his services for us both, in case the condition of your parish should render it desirable for you to abandon your present organization, and join with ours. Indeed the very terms of the Vote sufficiently indicate that such was its purpose. And now that you have striven with so much unanimity, disinterestedness, and good success, to maintain and establish your Ecclesiastical position, we cannot refrain from expressing to you our high and cordial satisfaction in such a result of your endeavors. We desire to convey to you our sincere congratulations; and we pray that the Divine Blessing may rest on you, our Sister Church, and on your Pastor as he continues his labors with you.

We remain faithfully yours in the fellowship of the Gospel.

The Standing Committee of the First Church, in communicating to you these sentiments act in obedience to a vote that was unanimously adopted by the Proprietors of that Church, on Sunday February 20th.

(Signed) Edward Everett

David Francis

N. L. Frothingham

J. T. W. Sargent

Samuel L. Abbott

Horace Dupee

Otis Rich

(Countersigned) Committee.

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[279] Installation of the Reverend Rufus Ellis. Boston May 4, 1853.

Agreeably to previous arrangements the Standing Committee met at the old vestry in the basement of the meeting house in Chauncy Place at ten o’clock A.M. this day.

At half past ten o’clock the Proprietors and Pew holders assembled at the same place, and the meeting was organized by the choice of Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham, as Chairman.

On motion of Mr. Frederick H. Bradlee, it was

Voted That a committee of five be elected to proced to the house of Dr. Frothingham, where the Rev. Council, Delegates from other Churches, and the Reverend Mr. Ellis, were assembled and to escort them to the Meeting House. Messrs. Edward Everett, William Hayden, Ebenezer Chadwick, Joseph T. Buckingham and Josiah Bradlee were elected as members of that committee and they proceeded to fulfill their duties.

The Reverend Rufus Ellis, D.D.

1819–1885

Minister of the First Church, 1853–1885

The Committee having returned with their guests, were met at the door by the Proprietors and Pewholders, and the whole body entered the house and occupied the pews in the broad aisle, the rest of the house being open to the public. The services then commenced and were conducted according to the following:

Order of Services at

the Installation of Reverend Rufus Ellis as Pastor of the First Church

in Boston.

Voluntary

Te deum laudamus

Introductory Prayer by Rev. O. B. Frothingham

Reading of the Scriptures by Rev. J. I. T. Coolidge

Hymn of Installation (original for the occasion), written

by Reverend N. L. Frothingham

“Eternal Lord! To Thee the Church

Where now we praise and pray,

Though old to our historic search,

Is but of yesterday.

“Of yesterday is all our race

To thine all-present sight;

[280] Before thy Truth both Time and Place

Dissolve in higher light.

“Yet here, O heavenly Father, grant

Thy special Presence down!

Our Fathers’ God, the children’s want

With chosen bounties crown.

“O deign to write thy love and fear

Upon these humble walls!

And speak when sinful man shall hear,

And listen when he calls.

“Train up this flock, a Church indeed,

Unspotted, unenticed,

On thy dear Word of Life to feed,

And follow after Christ.

“With light and strength, O Fount Divine!

Fill high thy servant’s heart,

Who seeks anew the anointing sign,—

The Grace Thou shalt impart.”

Sermon, by Reverend George Ellis: Text, 1st Timothy 1st Chapter, 15th verse.

Prayer of Installation by Reverend N. L. Frothingham

Psalm (original for the occasion) written by Rev. N. L. Frothingham

“The Lord gave the Word”:—’Twas the word of his Truth,

And the Word of salvation for all men to be.

Then forth went its preachers, the aged, the youth,

And “great was the company.”

“The Lord gave the Word”:—it was not as of old

When the Ark of his strength to the Temple was brought,

With the clanging of steel, and the gleaming of gold,

And spoils of a battle fought.”

“But the Gospel of Faith in the Spirit of Love

Is the true “King of Glory” the Church has enshrined;

And “the chariots of God” are the “thousands” that move

As “angels” to bless mankind,

O Lord, give this Word its triumphant success!

Be its mercy and peace on thy worshippers here!

And clothe all thy saints, with its righteousness,

With its earnest joy and fear.”

[281] Charge, by Rev. E. S. Gannett

Right hand of Fellowship, by Rev. F. D. Huntington

Address to the Society, by Rev. Chandler Robbins

Anthem

Concluding Prayer, Rev. Alexander Young

Benediction, by the Pastor

After the Services at the Meeting House were concluded, at three o’Clock P.M. the Proprietors, and Pewholders, with the Rev. Clergy and Delegates from other churches, met at Chapman Hall, and partook of a dinner provided in compliance with the vote of the Proprietors at the last Annual meeting, Hon. Edward Everett presiding.

Meeting of the Standing Committee, Boston May 4, 1853.

The Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston” met at Chapman Hall, this afternoon, at half past five o’clock.

Present—All the Committee.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted That the Chairman be requested to present the thanks of the Society to Messrs. George E. Ellis, E. S. Gannett, F. D. Huntington and Chandler Robbins and request of them copies of their several discourses delivered this day, for publication.

Mr. Sargent communicated a request from the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, for the use of the Meeting House for their anniversary Celebration, on the first Monday of June next, and on his motion, it was

Voted That the same be granted.

The Meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston May 16, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing Committee, was held at Mr. Everett’s house in Summer Street, this afternoon at four o’Clock.

Present, Messrs. Everett, Hayden, Rich, Dupee and Abbott.

[282] On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That Messrs. Rich and Hayden, be a committee, to consult with the Treasurer, and with full power to let or sell the Pews belonging to the Corporation.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was

Voted That Mr. William F. Weld, the Treasurer, be appointed and requested to act as agent to receive and collect subscriptions from worshippers at the First Church, in aid of the Benevolent Fraternity of Churches.

Mr. Hayden, from the Committee on that subject, Reported verbally, that the papers belonging to the Treasury, which were in the hands of the late David Francis Esq. had been delivered to his successor, and that the balance of his account in favor of the Corporation, amounting to nearly two thousand Dollars, had been promptly paid over to the new treasurer and had been by him placed in the Boylston Bank.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Chairman and Mr. Frothingham be a committee to consider the propriety of asking the Rev. Mr. Ellis, the Pastor, for a copy of his two sermons preached on Sunday the 8th inst. and publishing them in the same pamphlet, with the discourses delivered at the Installation, with full power in the premises.

The meeting then adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Saturday May 28, 1853.

This being the last Saturday in the month, a meeting of the Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston” was to be held, according to a vote passed at the meeting of the Committee on the 27th April last.

Present The Chairman and Clerk.

There being no quorum, Adjourned.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston June 25, 1853.

The regular monthly meeting of the Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston” was held this day, at nine o’clock A.M. at the house of Mr. Everett in Summer Street.

Present, Messrs. Everett, Hayden, Dupee and Rich.

Mr. Everett, from the Committee on that subject, reported that it had been considered by [283] the Committee inexpedient to ask Reverend Mr. Ellis for a copy of his two first sermons as Pastor, for publication, and therefore the discourses delivered at the Installation had been published by the Committee in a pamphlet by themselves.

Mr. Rich, from the Committee on Repairs reported verbally in respect to the outside of the Church and asked for further time—Which was granted.

On motion of Mr. Hayden the Committee on Repairs was instructed to open a communication between the Pulpit and the Vestry, and to fit up the Vestry in a proper manner for use.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That Mr. Hayden be added to the Committee on Repairs.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee in the name of the Proprietors confirm the invitation which it is understood has been given by the Pastor, to the Worshippers at the Stone Chapel, to unite with this Society during the time their church may be closed.

The meeting then adjourned.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston July 13, 1853.

A special meeting of the Standing Committee of the “first Church in Boston” was held at the office of the Clerk, in Railroad Exchange, Court Square, on Wednesday June 13, 1853 at 9 o’clock A.M.

The Chairman being absent, Mr. Rich was elected Chairman Pro tem. Mr. Rich, from the Committee on Repairs made a verbal report, as to the cost of covering the outside of the Church with mastic etc., and moved that the Standing Committee recommend to the Proprietors to authorise them to repair the tower and gutters of the Church and cover the brick work with mastic, and new paint the tower and such portions of the outside wood work as may be found necessary.

This motion was agreed to.

On motion of Mr. Abbott, it was

Voted That the Clerk be instructed to call a special meeting of the Proprietors, to be held at the Church in Chauncy Place, on [284] Monday next at half past three o’clock P.M. and that, in addition to the usual notices placed in the pews on Sunday next, he be instructed to send special notices to those stockholders living in the city, through the Post Office or otherwise, at his discretion.

The Clerk communicated a letter from Mr. Everett, the Chairman, stating that he wishes to resign his place on the Standing Committee, and on motion of Mr. Abbott it was

Voted that the Clerk be instructed to insert, in the notices for the Special Meeting of the Corporation Proprietors, a notice that the object of said meeting is to consider the subject of Repairs to be recommended, to fill vacancies that may occur in the Standing Committee and transact such other business as may be proposed.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston July 18, 1853.

A Special Meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston” was held at the Church in Chauncy Place, having been legally notified, at three o’clock P.M. on Monday July 18th 1853.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk and Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham was chosen Moderator.

Mr. Rich, Chairman pro tem. of the Standing Committee, made a verbal report of the proceedings of that body and of its recommendation to have the outside of the Church covered with mastic.

On motion of Josiah Bradlee Esq. it was

Voted That the whole subject of repairing the outside of the Church be indefinitely postponed.

Hon. Edward Everett was at his own request excused from further service as a member of the Standing Committee.

On motion of Mr. Huntington the meeting proceeded to fill the vacancy in the Standing Committee, and on a ballot being taken Edward F. Weld Esq. [285] was unanimously elected.

The meeting then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Friday, July 29, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing committee was held this morning at the office of the Clerk in Court Square, Boston, at nine o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Rich, Abbott, Dupee, Hayden.

On motion of Mr. Rich, William Hayden Esq. was chosen Chairman of the Board for the rest of the year.

Mr. Abbott presented a letter from George Gardner, proposing to purchase of the corporation a right of passage way through land of the Corporation, to Chauncy Place, which was read and referred to Messrs. Abbott and Rich.

Mr. Rich presented a letter from the Treasurer respecting Finances, which was read and laid on the table.

Mr. Hayden presented a letter from Mr. Boyd, tenant who occupies the cellar, which was read and referred to the Chairman of the Standing Committee.

Mr. Rich presented a letter from the Pastor respecting improvements contemplated in preparing a vestry, which was read and referred to the Committee on Repairs. Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday August 25, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church in Boston, was held this day at twelve o’clock M. at the Meeting House in Chauncy Place. Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Abbott and Dupee.

Mr. Abbott, from the Sub-Committee on Mr. Gardner’s letter, made a verbal report that Mr. Gardner proposed to purchase the right of way for the transportation of goods etc. through the yard on the south side of the meeting house, and offered to pay therefor One third of the value of the land.

On motion of Mr. Rich it was

[286] Voted That Mr. Abbott be requested to ask Mr. Gardner to make any proposition he had, in writing, in order that it may be submitted to a meeting of the Corporation, the Standing Committee not feeling authorised to take final action on a matter of so much importance, and that Mr. Gardner be requested [to] forward such proposition to the Clerk of the Corporation.

On motion of Mr. Abbott, it was

Voted That the Clerk be instructed to call a special meeting of the Proprietors at as early a day as convenient after the reception of any such written communication from Mr. Gardner, said meeting to be held at the Meeting House in Chauncy Place.

Adjourned, attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston August 30, 1853.

In compliance with a notification issued by the Clerk in legal form, in accordance with the vote of the Standing Committee, a Special Meeting of the Corporation was held at the Meeting House in Chauncy Place, this afternoon, at half past three o’clock.

Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham was elected Moderator.

The records of the meetings of the Standing Committee held since the last meeting of the Corporation, were read by the Clerk.

Mr. Hayden, Chairman of the Standing Committee, presented a letter received by the Clerk:

“Boston August 27th 1853. To the Proprietors of the First Church Chauncy Place. Being now about to make improvements upon my estate that runs behind your Church, and considering that some arrangement might be made for our mutual interest in regard to our respective rights, I would bring the subject before you. It is of importance to me now to settle any questions affecting my estate, as my plans must shortly be decided upon. Allow me, therefore to request that a Committee be appointed on your part to treat with me in regard to the same. Very Respectfully

George Gardner.”

Deacon James H. Foster, moved that the whole subject be indefinitely postponed, and [287] at the request of one of the Proprietors afterwards withdrew his motion.

On motion of Mr. Ezra Lincoln, it was

Voted That the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston deem it inexpedient to part with any of the land belonging to them, and adjoining their Church edifice, or with any rights pertaining to the same.

On motion of Mr. Lincoln, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be authorised and requested to procure a suitable book and to have recorded therein all the deeds and legal documents which have been executed from time to time, by or to the Proprietors of the Church from its foundation, together with all facts relating in any way to the title of Real Estate or the legal rights of the Corporation.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted that the Standing Committee be directed to take such measures as may be necessary or expedient to protect the rights of the Proprietors and prevent Chauncy Place from becoming a public way or street.

On motion of Deacon Foster, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be requested to cause the outside of the Church to be painted and to have such other repairs made as the Committee may deem expedient.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston September 17, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church in Boston, was held this day at 12 oClock noon, at the office of the Clerk in Railroad Exchange, Court Square.

Present, Messrs. Rich, Dupee, Abbott, Weld. In absence of the Chairman, Dr. Abbott was chosen Chairman, pro-tem.

On motion of Mr. Rich it was

Voted That J. H. Buckingham be employed to carry out the design of the Proprietors as directed in the vote adopted at the Special Meeting of the Corporation on the thirtieth of August last, authorising the recording of all deeds and legal documents respecting the Real Estate of the Church, in a Volume.

[288] On motion of Mr. Weld, it was

Voted That the subject of taking proper measures to protect the rights of the Proprietors, and to prevent Chauncy Place from becoming a public way or street, be referred to Mr. Hayden, with full power, and with liberty to employ legal counsel if he thinks it expedient.

Mr. Rich, offered a Communication from the Mayor of the city asking that a collection be taken in the Church on the next Sunday in aid of the sick sufferers at Mobile, which was referred to Mr. Weld, with power to make the proper arrangements, if he thinks it expedient, on consultation with the Pastor.

On motion of Mr. Dupee, it was

Voted That the subject of letting the cellar under the Meeting House, be referred to Mr. Hayden, with full power.

On motion of Mr. Weld, the subject of painting and repairing the outside of the Meeting house was referred to the standing Committee on Repairs, with full power.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston December 13, 1853.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the vestry in the Meeting House, in Chauncy Place this morning at Nine o’clock.

Present Messrs. Frothingham, Weld, Hayden, Sargent, Abbott and Dupee.

Mr. Hayden, from the Committee on that subject made a verbal report as to painting and cleaning of the Meeting House, the fitting up of the Vestry etc. and the cost of the same, the bills having been audited and placed in the hands of the Treasurer, to be paid.

A communication was read by the Chairman, from the Sexton, requesting an increase of salary, which, on motion of Mr. Abbott, was referred to the sub-Committee on the Sexton.

On motion of Mr. Weld, a communication from the Treasurer, dated July 18, 1853, was taken from the table, and the subject of it, which was the financial condition and affairs of the Corporation, was fully discussed, and on his motion it was Voted That Messrs. Weld, Sargent and Abbott be a committee to take into consideration the letter of July 18th, and to report some plan in relation to the increase of income, [289] at a future meeting of the Standing Committee.

The Chairman communicated a letter from Miss Norton, tenant of one of the School Rooms, asking for a reduction of rent, which was referred to Messrs. Rich and Abbott to report.

Mr. Abbott communicated a request from Mr. Paine the Organist, for the use of the Vestry which was referred to the sub-committee on Music, with full power to make suitable arrangements as to such use, and to define Mr. Paine’s duties and privileges.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham is was

Voted That the monthly regular meetings of the Standing Committee be resumed, and that, until further order they be held at his house in Summer Street, at four o’clock P.M. on the last Saturday of each month, without notification.

The meeting then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Regular Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston December 31, 1853.

Meeting at Mr. Frothingham’s house under the last Vote adopted at the last meeting of the Standing Committee.

Present Mr. Frothingham and Mr. Abbott, only.

No business transacted.

Standing Committee.

At the regular meetings of the Standing Committee in January and February 1854, there was no business transacted.

Regular Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston March 25, 1854.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this afternoon at the house of Mr. Frothingham at 3½ o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Dupee, Abbott, Rich and Frothingham.

Mr. Hayden, from the Committee on the Sexton, reported verbally on the Communication referred to it on the 13th December last, That it is inexpedient at the present time, to increase the pay or make any new arrangements with the Sexton. Accepted.

Mr. Rich, from the Committee to which was referred, on the 13th December last, the communication of Miss Norton, for reduction of rent, reported verbally, That one quarter’s rent of the school room occupied by her, be remitted. Accepted.

[290] Mr. Frothingham, from the Committee on Music, to which was referred the subject of an arrangement with Mr. Paine, the Organist, and his occupation of the Vestry, reported verbally, That the Committee had made such an arrangement as, it was thought would be of mutual advantage to that gentleman and the Society, and that no further action of this board was necessary. Accepted.

Mr. Rich, on the part of Mr. Hayden, to whom was referred the whole subject of leasing the cellar under the Church, reported That negotiations were in progress, but not yet complete and asking for further time, which was Granted.

Mr. Hayden, to whom, by a vote of 17th September last was referred the subject of the rights of the Corporation in Chauncy Place, with power to employ counsel etc. reported, That a new attempt was about to be made to open Chauncy Place as a public street or thoroughfare. He also requested that some member of this board be joined with him as a committee to oppose all such attempts, as well as to consult upon the proper measures to be adopted for the future. Agreed to.

And on motion of Dr. Dupee it was Voted that Mr. Rich act on that Committee with Mr. Hayden.

Mr. Abbott, from the Committee appointed December 13th 1853 on the Treasurer’s Communication respecting the Finances submitted a report which was, on his motion laid on the table.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted that the Chairman be requested to prepare the Annual Report of the Condition of the Corporation, to be submitted to this board at the next meeting.

Mr. Abbott, from the Committee on Music submitted a letter from Mrs. Wainwright (late Miss Garcia) resigning her situation in the Choir, after four years of service and stating her readiness to assist gratuitously on any emergency hereafter requiring her services.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham the letter was referred back to the Committee on Music with instructions to reply to it, thanking Mrs. Wainwright for her offer, and expressing the respect and esteem of the Standing Committee.

On motion of Mr. Abbott, the Committee were instructed to make Mrs. Wainwright a present of Fifty Dollars in the name of the society, either in money or some other token, and to draw on the Treasurer for the same. Mr. Hayden submitted a Communication he had received as Chairman of the Standing Committee of the Corporation, from Mrs. Davis and A. C. Hersey Esq., owners and occupants of two houses [291] on Summer Street formerly owned by the Corporation, respecting the release to them for a consideration, of certain restrictions in their title deeds.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted that this communication be submitted to the Corporation, by the Chairman of this board, at the next annual meeting.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted that when this meeting adjourn, it be adjourned to meet again at the same place, on Monday Evening April 17th next, at half past seven o’clock. Adjourned.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Meeting of Standing Committee. Boston April 17, 1854.

The meeting of the Standing Committee adjourned from the 25th March last, was held at Mr. Frothingham’s house in Summer Street this evening at half past seven o’clock.

Present, every member of the Committee.

The Chairman submitted a draft of an Annual meeting Report, which was read, and on motion of Mr. Rich it was

Voted that this Report be adopted and that the Chairman be instructed to present the same to the Annual meeting of the Corporation to be held tomorrow, as the Annual Report of the Standing Committee.

Mr. Abbott, from the Committee on Music, who were instructed to make a present to Mrs. Wainwright, reported that on communicating with that lady it was intimated by her that she should prefer some keepsake to the money, her choice having been asked by the committee. The Committee therefore had purchased a handsome ornamental mantel clock and sent it to her, for which she had expressed her gratitude. The report was accepted and the action of the Committee approved.

The Chairman submitted a letter from the Pastor, on the subject of Contributions for Charitable and other purposes, and on motion of Mr. Dupee it was

Voted that the letter be laid before the Corporation at its annual meeting tomorrow.

The meeting then dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston April 18, 1854.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been duly notified for two weeks, by the Clerk, in the usual manner, was held at the Vestry [292] of the Meeting House in Chauncy Place this afternoon at half past three o’clock, and was called to order by the clerk.

Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham was chosen Moderator.

Rev. Rufus Ellis, the Pastor, then offered up a pray[er] to the Most High God.

The Clerk then read the most important portions of the Records of the last year, the reading of the whole not being required, general consent being given to the omissions.

Mr. Hayden, Chairman of the Standing Committee, presented the Annual Report which was Read and accepted, and ordered to be recorded and filed. It was as follows:

“Chauncy Place, April 18th 1854

“The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” respectfully submit to the Proprietors, at their Annual Meeting, holden this day, the following Report upon the affairs of the Church for the last year.

“The financial affairs of the Corporation, for the year which closed on the 31st March ult. may be stated as follows:

“Receipts: The Balance in the hands of the Treasurer,

April 1st 1853, the Commencement of the year

1723.74

Received for taxes on pews, accruing within the year 2,079.09,—On account of unpaid Taxes of preceding years 231.50 Making whole amount received on account of Taxes

2310.59

Received years interest on C. G. Putnam’s note for $11,000—$660; do. On S. J. Davis’s note for $10,000—600; do. dividends for two years on Con. River Railroad Stock $4000.—340.—do. dividends on stock in Merchant’s Bank $4000 320—do. dividends on City of Boston stock $2000 100—Making the whole amount received for interest and dividends

2020.00

Received for Rents of three rooms in the basement and Cellar under the Church

435.00

Received for rights to take new stock in the Merchant’s Bank—40 shares at $2.—

80.00

Received for Old Stoves sold

4.00

Received as temporary loan, from the Treasurer

500.00

“Making the whole amount of moneys received during the year

$7073.33

“Expenditures:—For various Repairs, Fixtures, and Furniture for the Church

2,413.94

Salary of the Pastor, 3 quarters at $3000 per annum

2,250.00

Music

1,050.00

Expenses of Installation of the Pastor

403.42

Repairs of the Organ

200.00

Supplying the Pulpit previously to the Installation

168.00

Salary of the Sexton

150.00

Fuel

130.75

Paid for collecting Pew Taxes—for City Tax on Church property—Premium of Insurance—Contribution [293] to the Unitarian Festival, and sundry other small items of expense

283.83

“Making the whole amount of Expenditures, for the year

7,049.94

“The whole amount of moneys received, on account of the Church for the year ending on the 31st March last, as per above statement was 7073.33.—The amount of moneys expended, within the same year, was 7049.74.—Leaving a balance in the hands of the Treasurer, at the close of the year, amounting to $23.39.

“During the year, embraced by the foregoing financial statement, expenditures of an extraordinary character have been incurred, amounting to upwards of $2,800—These moneys have been expended, for painting the entire exterior of the Church—for fitting up the Vestry Room, for the use of the Sunday School and for other appropriate purposes—for for putting up the vestibule, and iron stairs, to connect the Vestry with the Pulpit—for a new furnace, and repairs of old furnaces—for gas fixtures, to light the Pulpit and the Vestry—for repairing the Roof, the Steeple, the Gutters, and the Fences of the Church—for affixing new ventilators to the Chimnies—and for a thorough cleaning of the Church.

“To meet these improvements, which appeared necessary to put the Church in proper order, the Committee have expended something over $2400—and the Installation expenses amount to about $400—making an unusual expenditure of about $2800. To defray these Expenses, the balance of $1700 on hand on the first of April of the last year, has been used—and a debt of $500 has been incurred: and the balance of the expenditure has been defrayed from the regular income of the year.

“As there are no extraordinary calls for expenditure, known to the Committee as likely to occur the ensuing year, the Committee anticipate that the regular expenses may be met from the ordinary income of the year.

“In submitting this, their Annual Report, the Standing Committee do not feel at liberty to pass over, without mention, so note-worthy an event in the affairs of this ancient Church, as the installation of a new Minister over it—an event which has occurred within the last year. After laboring, for a considerable time, under the disadvantages of a vacant Pulpit:—and having seen several efforts, to supply the deficiency terminate unsuccessfully—we have, at last, been blessed in this respect, in a much more than ordinary degree. The uncommon unanimity with which the call was extended, to the Rev. Mr. Ellis, to come among us, as our Minister—the promptness and cordiality with which that call was met and acceded to by him—the earnest zeal and fidelity with which he has entered upon the duties of his pastoral charge—and the singular favor and unqualified acceptance which have, thus far, met his efforts among us—seem to give promise of a [294] happy, harmonious, and prosperous union—useful alike to minister and people. May Heaven smile upon, and bless, this connection—and under it subservient to that great cause, which is the highest object of human effort.

In behalf of the Standing Committee

William Hayden Chairman.”

Mr. Weld presented the Treasurers Report and the Report of the Finance Committee which was read, accepted and ordered to be recorded and filed. It was as follows:

“First Church Treasurer’s Report for the year ending March 31st, 1854

Amount on hand April 1853

1723.74

Received for Taxes on Pews due previous to April 1, 1853

231.50

Amt. collected for the year ending March 31/54

2079.09

Income from property

2550.00

Cash Borrowed

500.

$7084.33

“Payments.

Bill for Repairs of Church

2306.44

Expense of Installation

387.42

Pastor’s Salary, Singers etc.

4367.08

Balance in hand

23.39

E. E. Boston March 31st/54

$7084.33

Edward F. Weld, Treasurer.

“The undersigned Committee having Examined the above account find it correctly cast and properly vouched.

John T. Dingley

Nathaniel B. Doggett

It was then voted to proceed to the choice of officers for the ensuing year, and Messrs. N. B. Doggett and Joseph H. Francis were appointed to collect, sort and count the votes. The first ballot was for Clerk, and it was reported that Joseph H. Buckingham was elected, and so declared. The Moderator then administered the usual oath to the clerk, in the usual form.

The Committee reported that for Standing Committee, all the votes cast were for William Hayden, N. L. Frothingham, Otis Rich, Samuel L. Abbott, Horace Dupee, Edward F. Weld, Thomas B. Wales and they were declared elected.

The Committee reported that for Treasurer, all the votes were for Edward F. Weld and he was declared elected.

[295] Messrs. Joseph H. Francis, John T. Dingley and Nathaniel B. Doggett were duly elected as the Committee on Finance.

On motion of Mr. Huntington, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee have power to appoint a Sexton, and fix his salary.

On motion of Mr. Weld, it was voted That the Treasurer be instructed to pay Twenty Dollars to the fund for furnishing the Annual Festival of the Unitarian Association.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee, presented the letter of Mrs. Davis and A. C. Hersey respecting restrictions in the deeds of their houses on Summer Street, which, on motion of Mr. Huntington, was referred to the Standing Committee to be considered and reported upon as an adjournment of this meeting to be held next week.

On motion of Mr. Huntington, it was Voted That the Standing Committee, to which it has been referred the subject of protecting the rights of the Corporation in Chauncy Place, be instructed to Oppose the application now pending before the Mayor and Aldermen to open the same as a public street.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee presented the letter from the Pastor, respecting contributions, as follows:

“William Hayden Esquire

24 Edinburgh St.

18 Feb. 1854

My Dear Sir

In common with most of the pastors in the City I am receiving, from time to time, applications for the charities of our Congregation, to be expended either here or elsewhere. Such applications cannot of course all be met, neither should they all be rejected, and it is a problem of some difficulty “What is the best way of disposing of them?” I do not like to give a list of names and send the applicants to men of business who are justly annoyed by such interruptions, nor do I like to ask for a contribution every few Sundays. It has occurred to me that an arrangement which has been adopted in Rev. Mr. Huntington’s Parish has great advantages. In that Congregation there is a Committee annually appointed, the members of which take all such matters in charge, and the funds entrusted to this Committee are derived from four annual contributions, four and no more. One of these contributions is intended for the poor, and this might be dispensed with in our case, as we have a Church fund for this purpose which is more than sufficient.

“Our objects [296] would be 1. The Ministry at Large. 2. A regular contribution to the American Unitarian Association. 3. Charitable Gifts to struggling Churches—Or, what would be better, perhaps—we might have two Contributions—One for the Ministry at Large, the other for Missionary purposes; to be disposed of, either through the association or by the Committee as applications should be made from time to time. I know how many demands are made upon Boston, especially upon the Churches and how often Charity is misapplied, and yet it is certain that it is absolutely essential to the health and growth of a religious community that its members should be in the habit of giving. They are benefitted quite as much as their beneficiaries—but this need not be written to you—Now our work in this way can be done with a tenth part of the labor that is sometimes spent upon it, by the aid of a little machinery. Let there be two contributions, say at Easter and the Sunday before Thanksgiving, and at the annual meeting let there be a Committee on Donations empowered to entertain and answer all applications for aid and instructed to report their doings annually, and the matter is done. Will you consider the subject and take it in hand, if you think fit.

Respectfully and truly yours

R. Ellis.”

The letter having been read, it was, on motion of Mr. Frothingham, seconded by Mr. Hayden,

Voted That in future there shall be two contributions taken up in the Society, at Easter and on the Sunday before Thanksgiving, each year, according to and for the purposes suggested in the Pastor’s letter.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was

Voted That a Committee on Donations on the principles laid down in the Pastor’s letter be chosen each year at the Annual Meeting.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, the election for this year, of this Committee was assigned for Tuesday next, at the adjourned meeting.

On motion of Mr. Huntington it was

Voted That when this meeting adjourn, it be adjourned to meet at this place, on Tuesday next at four o’clock in the afternoon.

Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[297] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 19, 1854.

The members elect of the Standing Committee, all except Mr. Weld, met at the office of the Clerk, in Court Square, at half past seven o’clock this evening.

The Clerk called the meeting to order, and William Hayden Esq. was elected Chairman of the Committee for the ensuing year, and immediately entered upon his duties.

The Chairman appointed the following sub-committees, viz.

On Music, Messrs. Frothingham, Abbott and Wales.

On the Sexton, Messrs. Hayden and Wales.

On Repairs, Messrs. Rich and Dupee,

which were confirmed unanimously.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee; to which has been referred the letter of Mrs. Davis and Mr. Hersey, Report, to the adjourned meeting of the Corporation to be held next Tuesday, that in their opinion it is expedient for the Corporation to release to the Proprietors of the four houses on Summer Street formerly owned by the Corporation, the restrictions in their several deeds in respect to building on the rear of their estates, and as to the occupancy of the premises for stores, on the payment to the Corporation of Two Thousand Dollars each.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was

Voted That Messrs. Hayden and Rich be a sub-Committee to appear before the Mayor and Aldermen and oppose the opening of Chauncy Place as a public street.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted, That the Committee recommend to the Proprietors, to choose Messrs. John E. Thayer, Rev. Rufus Ellis, and H. W. Torrey as the Committee on Donations which is to be elected according to assignment on Tuesday next.

This being an informal vote on a subject not referred to the Standing Committee, it was not intended that it should become a part of the Record and is Expunged, by order, from the Journal.

On motion of Mr. Dupee, the subject of the contract with Mr. Paine, the Organist, was referred to the Committee on Music with full power, Adjourned.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 25, 1854.

A special meeting of the Standing Committee, was held at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy [Place] [298] this afternoon at a quarter before four o’clock.

Present—The Chairman, and Messrs. Weld, Wales, Frothingham and Dupee.

The Chairman communicated a letter he had received from Dr. C. G. Putnam, relative to the restrictions in the deed of his house on Summer Street, which, on motion of Mr. Wales, the Chairman was directed to submit to the next meeting of the Corporation.

The Chairman submitted a Report on the subject of the houses on Summer Street, and the letter of Mrs. Davis and A. C. Hersey, which was approved and he was directed to report it to the Corporation, at the meeting to be held this afternoon.

Adjourned.

Attest. J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Adjourned Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, April 25, 1854.

An adjourned meeting of the Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston was held at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Place this afternoon at four o’clock, Hon. Joseph T. Buckingham, Moderator, in the Chair.

The Records of the last meeting were read by the Clerk.

Mr. Hayden, Chairman of the Standing Committee, presented a letter from Dr. C. G. Putnam, in reference to the restrictions in the deed of the house purchased by him of this Corporation, which was read and ordered to be placed on file.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee to which was referred the letter of Mrs. Davis and A. C. Hersey made a report which was read.

Mr. Huntington moved to amend said Report by substituting in the last line but one of the last paragraph but one, the word “three” for the word “two,” so that it should read “by the proprietor of each of the four Estates, of the sum of Three thousand dollars, to the Proprietors of this Church.” This amendment was decided in the negative.

Mr. Huntington moved to amend said Report by inserting a clause that the Proprietor of the corner house should pay “four thousand dollars.” This motion was decided in the negative.

On motion of Mr. Hayden it was voted that the said Report be so amended that it should read in the conclusion of the last paragraph but one “by the proprietor of the Estate on the Corner of Summer Street and Chauncy [299] Place of the sum of three Thousand dollars and by the proprietors of each of the other three Estates, of the sum of Two thousand dollars.”

The report as amended was accepted, and ordered to be placed on Record, and on file. It was as follows:

“Chauncy Place April 25, 1854

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church, in Boston”—to whom was referred a communication from Alfred C. Hersey and Sarah J. Davis, asking for certain modifications in the tenure of the titles of their estates on Summer Street, held under conveyances to them, from the Proprietors of this Church—have had under consideration the subject with which they were charged, and respectfully submit the following Report.

After the discussion which took place, on this subject, at the meeting of which this is an adjournment—and the explanations which were then made, of the provisions, restrictions and limitations, contained in the several Deeds by which the Proprietors of this Church conveyed to the several purchasers, the block of Houses on Summer Street, contiguous to Chauncy Place, the Committee do not deem it necessary to go over the particulars of those several conveyances.

The titles by which those Estates are held by the present proprietors, and the uses to which the Estates may be applied, are essentially limited. The Committee have no doubt that it was the intention of the Proprietors of the Church, and of the various Committees acting for them in making those conveyances, to limit the titles which were granted, just as they were limited by the specifications of the several Deeds:—and, when the Committee remember the well known business talents and sagacity of the gentlemen by whom the negociations were conducted, on the part of the purchasers, they have quite a little doubt that the nature and extent of those restrictions, as contained in the Deeds, were perfectly well understood by the purchasers.

The prices paid for those Estates were unquestionably graduated according to the nature of the conveyances. No person, as well acquainted with business concerns as the purchasers of those Estates were, would take a title, encumbered with serious restrictions and limitations, and pay as high a price as he would have been willing to pay for a free and clear title.

The Proprietors of this Church have conveyed those Estates, for certain purposes, and under certain restrictions. They have been satisfied with the entire good faith with which the purchasers of those Estates have kept themselves to the terms of their bargain, and restricted their occupation within the limits of their respective titles. The Church is satisfied with things as they are now. It neither asks for nor desires, any change.

[300] The party of the other part, however, seek for a new condition of things. They ask for authority to use these Estates in a manner not included in the original grant. They request the Church, in fact, to convey to them a new property, for which no equivalent has yet been paid. If the Proprietors of the Church should see fit to comply with this request, there is no sufficient reason apparent to the Committee, why an adequate remuneration should not be required and paid.

There is a disposition, in some quarters—scarcely to be wondered at—to resist, as long as may be, the restless and encroaching spirit of trade;—and the Committee have reason to believe that some of the Proprietors are disinclined to any further action on this subject—preferring that the Estates in question should continue in their present use and occupation:—But then, it is only a question whether the Proprietors of this Church are determined to stand, somewhat doggedly, in the path—or are willing to yield themselves, gracefully, to the circumstances of the times. The Committee are disposed to recommend the latter course.

The Committee, therefore, recommend that authority should be given to the proprietors of the four Estates on Summer Street, holding under deeds from this Church, to use the said Estates for Stores—with permission to erect buildings of brick, stone or iron, appertanent to said Stores, and not more than twenty feet in height from the sidewalk, on the land within twenty feet of the rear or southwesterly line of the said Estates—and that good and sufficient deeds be given, conveying the privileges aforesaid upon the payment by the proprietor of the Estate on the corner of Summer Street and Chauncy Place of the sum of three thousand dollars, and by the proprietors of such of the other three Estates of the sum of Two thousand dollars, to the Proprietors of this Church.

The Committee further recommend that a Committee, to consist of two of the Proprietors of this Church, be now appointed, to make and execute such deeds and conveyances, provided the proprietors of the Estates in question, shall accede to, and comply with, the terms here stipulated.

In behalf of the Committee

sgd William Hayden Chairman.

On motion of Mr. Josiah Bradlee, Messrs. William Hayden and Jonathan Preston, were elected the Committee to make and execute the deeds and conveyances, as provided for in the last paragraph of the preceding report.

On motion of Deacon James H. Foster, it was

[301] Voted That, if the proposition contained in the Report of the Committee which has just been adopted, be not accepted and complied with, within three months from this day, it shall be thereafter null and void and of no effect.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee to which was referred the subject of opening Chauncy Place as a street, made a verbal report that nothing has yet been decided in relation to it by the City Government.

On motion of Mr. Weld, the meeting proceeded to the election of a Committee on Donations, and on the votes being counted it appeared that John E. Thayer, Reverend Rufus Ellis and Henry W. Torrey, were unanimously chosen.

On motion of Mr. Josiah Bradlee, it was

Voted That the salary of Rev. Rufus Ellis, the Pastor be increased after the expiration of the present quarter, to Thirty five hundred Dollars a year.

Meeting dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston October 3, 1854.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this afternoon at four o’Clock at the Office of the Clerk, Railroad Exchange, Court Square, having been called by order of the Chairman.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Abbott, Weld and Wales.

On motion of Mr. Wales, it was

Voted That in view of the situation of the Treasurer’s wants at this time, it is expedient to sell one of the Certificates of Boston City Stocks, now in his hands belonging to the Corporation, the proceeds to be appropriated to paying Salaries and other necessary expenses.

Voted That the Treasurer be authorised to make sale of said stock to the amount of One thousand Dollars.

On motion of Dr. Abbott, it was

Voted That Reverend Mr. Ellis, the Pastor, and Reverend Dr. Frothingham be delegated to attend the Unitarian Convention, proposed to be held at Montreal on the 11th and 12th inst, as representatives [302] of the First Church, and that the Treasurer be authorised to pay the amount of their expenses out of the funds of the Corporation.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston October 27, 1854.

A meeting of the Standing Committee having been notified by the Clerk, by order of the Chairman, was held at the Clerk’s Office, No 16 Railroad Exchange, Court Square, at half past three o’clock this afternoon.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Frothingham, Rich and Abbott.

The Chairman presented a communication from the Pastor respecting the occupation of several pews in Gallery, by poor children who are Sunday School scholars, and their teachers, on reading which it was Voted That the Treasurer be authorised to place at the disposal of the Pastor such pews as can be spared for that purpose, to be occupied by such poor persons and their teachers as he, the Pastor, may designate.

Mr. Rich, presented a communication from Miss Norton, a tenant of one of the school rooms, which was referred to the Treasurer and Mr. Rich, with full powers.

Meeting dissolved.

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston December 9, 1854.

A meeting of the Standing Committee having been duly notified by the Clerk, by order of the Chairman, was held at the Clerk’s office No 16 Railroad Exchange, Court Square, at half past three o’clock this afternoon.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Frothingham, Weld, Wales, and Rich.

A letter from Thomas Gaffield, Chairman of Lecture Committee of the Young Men’s Christian Union, asking for the use of the Church on the evening of January 7th 1855 for the delivery of a lecture, by Reverend Rufus Ellis, was received, and on motion of Mr. Rich the request was granted.

On motion of Mr. Rich it was

Voted That the Committee on Repairs be authorised, if they deem it expedient, to fit up the Church so that it may be lighted by Gas.

[303] 1855.

A letter was received from J. T. Buckingham, respecting Pew No 8, offering to surrender the deed of the same. On motion of Mr. Wales it was laid on the table, and the Treasurer was authorised to sell said pew and to pay over to Mr. Buckingham all that may be received for the same, over and above the taxes and expenses that may be due up to the time of the sale. The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston January 30, 1855.

A meeting of the Standing Committee, having been duly notified, by the Clerk, by order of the Chairman was held at the Clerk’s Office No 16 Railroad Exchange, Court Square, at half past three o’clock this afternoon. Present—Messrs. Hayden, Wales, Rich and Abbott. A letter from the Chairman of the Lecture Committee of the Young Men’s Christian Union, conveying the thanks of that Society for the use of the Church on the 7th inst. was read, and ordered to be placed on file.

A letter from Thomas Gaffield, Chairman of the Lecture Committee of the Young Men’s Christian Union, dated 24th inst. requesting the use of the Church on the 11th February (evening) on the occasion of Dr. Hedge’s Lecture, was read, and on motion of Mr. Wales it was Voted to grant the request.

Mr. Hayden from the Committee on that subject, made a verbal report on the duties and pay of the Sexton, and on motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted That there be paid to the Sexton, as compensation for extra services performed by him during the last year, the sum of Twenty five Dollars, also Voted That the salary of the Sexton, for the year commencing January 1, 1855, be fixed at Two hundred and fifty Dollars, he furnishing all necessary assistants in ringing and tolling the bell etc.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted that the Chairman be authorised to settle all matters respecting the taxes due on Pew No 13 owned by Mrs. Derby.

Meeting Dissolved.

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[304] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 16, 1855.

A meeting of the Standing Committee having been duly notified by the Clerk, was held at No 16 Railroad Exchange, at half past four o’clock this afternoon.

Present Messrs. Hayden, Frothingham, Wales.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was

Voted That the Chairman be requested to state to the Proprietors, at the Annual Meeting of the Corporation, tomorrow, the Exigency in our Financial Affairs and to state that, in the opinion of the Standing Committee, an increase of Fifty per cent on taxes on pews is desirable, in order to meet the Expenses of the Society.

Mr. Hayden communicated a letter of thanks from the Young Men’s Christian Union, for the use of the Meeting House on the occasion of the delivery of Dr. Hedge’s Lecture, which was read and placed on file.

Mr. Hayden communicated a letter from Edward Wigglesworth, Secretary of the Benevolent Fraternity of Churches, asking for the use of the Meeting House on Sunday the 22d of April, in the Evening, and it was

Voted That the request be granted.

On motion of Mr. Frothingham, it was voted that the Chairman be requested to prepare the Annual Report for presentation at the Annual Meeting of the Corporation tomorrow. Meeting Dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham.

Clerk of the Corporation.

Annual Meeting of the Corporation. Boston April 17, 1855.

The annual meeting of the “Proprietors of the First Church in Boston,” having been duly notified by the Clerk, for two weeks, in the usual manner, was held this afternoon at half past three o’clock, at the Vestry of the Meeting House, in Chauncy Place.

It was called to order by the Clerk, and Dr. George Bates was chosen moderator. Prayer by the Pastor.

The Clerk read the Record of the last Annual Meeting and portions of the Records of different meetings of the Standing Committee during the past year. [305] Mr. Hayden, Chairman of the Standing Committee communicated a letter from the Pastor respecting exchanges and supplying the Pulpit, during several weeks of the coming summer season, which was read, and it was Voted to allow the Pastor to exercise his own judgement in the matter.

Mr. Hayden from the same Committee, also communicated letters from George H. Kuhn on behalf of the Proprietors of estates on Summer Street in relation to the restrictions against building on those estates, and proposing to convey to the Corporation the rights of those Proprietors in lieu of those restrictions.

Also, a letter from Dr. C. G. Putnam, in relation to the terms of the deed of his estate, which, on motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington, were referred to the Standing Committee with authority to sell the privileges and occupancy of those estates for stores, on the same terms as were authorised by the vote passed by the Corporation at the meeting held on the twenty fifth day of April 1854, at any time within six months from this day.

On motion of Mr. E. F. Weld it was

Voted That Messrs. William Hayden and Jonathan Preston, be appointed a Committee with power to make and execute the deeds and conveyances, as provided for in the last preceeding vote.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee, presented the Annual Report of that Committee, which was accepted, and ordered to be recorded and placed on file.

The annual report of the Auditing Committee was presented and accepted and ordered to be placed on file.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee, proposed the following:

Voted That in addition to the Taxes already established upon the pews in this Church, there shall be levied and assessed, upon each and Every Pew, an amount equal to fifty per centum, or one half, of the amount heretofore recently assessed upon said Pew: and that said Taxes shall be assessed and payable semi-annually, from the first day of April and the first day of October, in Each year—commencing on the first day of April of the [306] present year.

On motion of Mr. J. P. Bradlee it was laid on the table.

The Clerk communicated a letter from Rev. N. L. Frothingham, declining re-election as a member of the Standing Committee.

It was then Voted to proceed to ballot for officers for the ensuing year, and Messrs. Joseph H. Francis and Edward F. Weld were appointed a Committee to collect, sort and count the votes.

The first business was the election of Clerk and the Committee reported that all the votes Cast were for—Joseph H. Buckingham, and he was declared duly elected.

William Hayden Esq., Justice of the Peace then administered the usual oath of the Clerk, in the usual form.

The same Committee reported that all the ballots cast for Standing Committee, were for William Hayden, Otis Rich, Samuel L. Abbott, Horace Dupee, Charles L. Hayward, George Bates, and Thomas B. Wales, and those gentlemen were declared to be duly elected.

The same Committee reported that all the ballots cast, for Treasurer, were for Charles L. Hayward, and he was declared duly elected.

Messrs. Joseph H. Francis, John T. Dingley and N. B. Doggett were chosen as the Committee on Finance.

On motion of Mr. Huntington, the Standing Committee was authorised to appoint a Sexton and fix his salary.

On motion of Mr. Edward F. Weld, it was

Resolved That One hundred and twenty five Dollars be paid by the Treasurer, to the Clerk for his services to the present date, and that the Salary of the Clerk of the Corporation for the future, be Twenty Five Dollars a year.

On motion of Mr. E. F. Weld it was Voted That the Treasurer be and is hereby authorised to pay to the Treasurer of the Unitarian Festival, Twenty Dollars.

On motion of Mr. Josiah Bradlee, Messrs. [307] John E. Thayer, Rufus Ellis and Henry W. Torrey, were chosen the Standing Committee on Donations, in accordance with the votes of the last Annual Meeting.

On motion of Mr. J. P. Bradlee it was Voted That the Standing Committee are hereby authorised and empowered to sell any stock belonging to the permanent fund of the Corporation, that may be necessary, to raise money to defray the expenses of the Corporation. Meeting Dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Copy

Annual Report of the Standing Committee. First Church, Chauncy Place. April 17, 1855.

The Standing Committee of the “First Church in Boston” respectfully submit to the Proprietors, the following, as their Annual Report, upon the prudential affairs of the Corporation.

The financial transactions, in behalf of the Church, for the year which closed on the 31st day of March ult are as follows, viz:

Income

Received on account of taxes on Pews falling due within the year,

2036.00

On account of taxes, of former years,

46.00

Making the whole amount collected on account of pew taxes,

2082.00

Received for Interest and Dividends

Interest on Dr. C. G. Putnam’s note one year on $11,000.00

660.00

Interest on Mrs. Sarah J. Davis’ note, one year on $10,000.00

600.00

Dividend on Stock in Merchants Bank 8 Per Cent on $4000.00

320.00

Dividends on Stock on Connecticut River R. Road 4½ Per Cent on $4000.00

180.00

Interest on City of Boston, Stock $ 1000 for one year $1000. for 6 mos. at 5 Per Cent

75.00

Making the whole amount received for Interest and Dividends,

1835.00

[308] Received for Rents.

Rent of School Room, in the Basement of the Church, one year,

125.00

Rent of School Room, in the Basement of the Church, nine months,

75.00

Rent of Room used for storage, one year

100.00

Rent of Cellar under the Church, nine months,

75.00

Making the whole amount received for rents,

375.00

Received for sale of a Certificate of 5 per cent

City Stock, for $1000

966.67

To which amounts should be added the balance of money in the hands of the Treasurer, at the commencement of the financial year,

23.39

Making the total of funds, received by the Treasurer during the year, amount to,

$5312.06

Expenditures

The Salary of the Pastor 3 mos. at $3000.—and 9 mos. at $3500.00 per annum,

3375.00

Expenses of Music,

1087.50

Salary of the Sexton,

183.33

Fuel, light, and water,

155.12

Repairs, 70.73—Premium of Insurance $30.00

City Taxes 27.60

128.33

Collecting Pew Taxes 57.07 Interest on money borrowed $32.00 Unitarian festival, 20.00

109.07

Sundry incidental expenses of small amounts

132.96

Making the total of Expenditures, within the year, amount to

5,171.31

The whole amount of Income of the Church for the year which closed on the 31st of March last appears, by the foregoing statement, to have been

5,312.06

And the whole amount of payments within the same year to have been,

5,171.31

Leaving a balance which was the precise sum of money in the hands of the Treasurer, on the first day of April instant, amounting to,

$140.75

In order to meet the ordinary expenditures of the Church for the last year, the Committee have been under the necessity of disposing of a Certificate of City Stock, which was a portion of a temporary investment, made some three years since of an amount of surplus income, which had accrued during the time the Church was without a Pastor. There is still now a debt due from the Church of $500—borrowed the year before the last, towards defraying the very considerable expenses for repairs, incurred that year—and there are also two bills against the Church outstanding and unpaid, amounting to about $250. incurred for introducing gas fixtures to light the Church [309] and for other repairs.

The Committee deem it their duty to state to the Proprietors that the ordinary Income of the Church is not now sufficient to meet the commonly occurring and authorized expenditures. The deficiency is about $1000 per annum—and this sum, in addition to the present stated income, must be raised, to meet the expenses of the Church, under its present establishment. What means shall be adopted to raise the additional revenue so obviously necessary to the purposes of our association, it is left to the wisdom of the proprietors to decide.

Respectfully submitted

In behalf of the Committee,

William Hayden Chairman.

Proprietors First Church in

Boston. Annual Meeting April 17, 1855.

Accepted and ordered to be recorded and placed on file.

(signed)

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

A true copy, attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 19, 1855.

The members elect of the Standing Committee, having been notified by the Clerk, met at his office in Railroad Exchange, Court Square, in this city, this day.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Hayward, Bates, Dupee and Wales.

The Clerk called the meeting to order, and William Hayden Esq. was unanimously elected Chairman for the year ensuing.

Mr. Hayward, the Treasurer, made a statement respecting the finances, he having received all the books, papers and securities from the late Treasurer, and it was Voted That the Treasurer be instructed to sell the remaining certificate of Boston City Scrip for $1000, now in his hands belonging to the Corporation, and to appropriate the proceeds of the same to the payment of demands.

On motion of Mr. Bates, Messrs. Hayden and Hayward [310] were appointed a committee to dispose of the unoccupied pews in the meeting house, by letting or selling the same, with full power.

The Chairman nominated the following Committees, which were approved.

  • On Music, Messrs. Abbot, Wales and Hayward.
  • On Sexton, Messrs. Hayden and Wales.
  • On Repairs, Messrs. Rich, Dupee and Bates.

The Chairman communicated a letter from Rev. Dr. Peabody, of King’s Chapel in School Street, in reference to closing the meeting house for a few weeks, and a vacation of the Pastor, which was read and it was

Voted to submit the subject to a meeting of the Proprietors, to be held next Sunday, after the forenoon service. Meeting dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Sunday April 29, 1855.

A meeting of the Proprietors having been requested by notice from the pulpit, was held immediately after morning service this day, at which John E. Thayer Esq. was chosen Chairman.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee read a letter from the Rev. Dr. Peabody, Pastor of the King’s Chapel, addressed to the Pastor of this Church, proposing a union of services, of the Chauncy Place, Brattle Street, and King’s Chapel Churches, during the approaching summer, to be held alternately, for a month at each of the churches.

This Communication having been considered—and objections having been advanced to closing this Church for any portion of the year, it was thereupon, on motion of Hon. E. Everett,

Voted That the Pastor of this Church be requested to reply to the letter of the Rev. Dr. Peabody, stating the disinclination of the Proprietors of this church to any suspension of its services—but, at the same time, extending to the people of the King’s Chapel and Brattle Street Churches a kind and friendly invitation to join us in worship at our church—if they should, at any time during the season see fit to close their own places of worship:—And the Standing Committee was authorised to take measures for their accommodation, if this invitation should be accepted.

Meeting dissolved, attest,

J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

[311] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston August 4, 1855.

A meeting of the Standing Committee, was held at the office of the Clerk this day at half past twelve o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Hayward, Abbot, and Dupee.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted That Messrs. Hayden and Hayward be a Committee, with instructions to take into immediate consideration the subject and rights of the Corporation in relation to the four houses formerly belonging to the same, on Summer Street, particularly with reference to a proposed change of the house of A. C. Hersey into a store or stores, and to take all proper legal measures to secure those rights.

Mr. Abbot asked information as to the powers of the Sub-Committee on Music, in regard to Salaries etc. It appearing to be generally understood that its powers, under direction of the Standing Committee are discretionary and ample, no vote was taken on the subject.

Mr. Hayward, as Treasurer, reported verbally That Mrs. Davis had paid up and cancelled the mortgage given by her to the Corporation, and that the money was in his hands. It was thereupon

Voted That the Treasurer be authorised to loan and invest the money of the Corporation now in his hands belonging to the permanent fund in safe mortgage or other Security, at his discretion. Meeting dissolved.

Attest, J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston December 23, 1855.

A meeting of the Standing Committee, was held at the meeting House in Chauncy Place, this day at twelve o’clock immediately after the morning service. The Clerk being absent, Mr. C. L. Hayward was elected Clerk pro tem.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Bates, Rich, Abbot and Hayward.

Mr. Hayden presented a communication received [312] by him as Chairman of the Standing Committee, from the City Clerk of the City of Boston, dated December 20, 1855, notifying a meeting of the Board of Mayor and Aldermen in regard to the opening of Chauncy Place as a public highway. It was Voted That Messrs. Hayden, Bates and Hayward be a Committee to attend said meeting in behalf of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, to protest against the proposed measure.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Charles L. Hayward Clerk pro tem.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 11, 1856.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the office of the Clerk, Railroad Exchange, Court Square, in Boston, this afternoon at four o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Abbot, Dupee, Wales and Hayward.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was voted That the Chairman be requested to prepare the Annual Report, to be submitted to the Corporation at the Annual Meeting on Tuesday next.

Mr. Hayden made a verbal report respecting the action of the City and the rights of the Corporation in Chauncy Place.

Mr. Hayward made a verbal report respecting the state of the Treasury.

A long conversation ensued on these and other matters relating to the affairs of the Corporation, but no formal action was deemed necessary, as it was understood that the Chairman would embody the views of the Committee in his forthcoming report.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 15, 1856.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street this afternoon at half past three o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Wales, Abbot, Dupee and Hayward.

Mr. Hayden, submitted the Annual Report which he had prepared in pursuance of the vote passed at the last meeting of the Committee, which was read, and on motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted That the same be [313] adopted and the Chairman be instructed to present it to the Corporation at the Annual Meeting to be held this day. Meeting dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Annual Meeting of the Corporation. Boston April 15, 1856.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston,” having been notified for two weeks by the Clerk, by printed notices distributed in the pews, was held this day at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street, at four o’clock in the afternoon.

It was called to order by the Clerk, and John E. Thayer Esq. was chosen Moderator.

Prayer by the Pastor.

The Clerk read the Records of the last year’s meetings and of the meetings of the Standing Committee.

Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee, presented the Annual Report, which was read by him, and on motion of Mr. J. P. Bradlee, it was accepted, and ordered to be recorded and placed on file.

Mr. Francis, from the Committee on Finance reported the Treasurer’s account to April 1, 1856, with the following endorsement:

“Boston 1st April 1856. Having examined the accounts vouchers etc. of Charles L. Hayward, Treas. First Church, for the year ending the first day of April 1856, hereby certify that they were all correct.

Joseph H. Francis

Nathaniel B. Doggett

for the Committee.

And on motion of Mr. Rich it was accepted and ordered to be placed on file.

On motion of Mr. Abbot, it was then Voted to proceed to the election of officers for the ensuing year, and Mr. Francis was appointed a Committee to collect, sort and count the ballots.

The Committee reported that all the ballots cast for Clerk, were for Joseph H. Buckingham and he was declared duly elected Clerk of the Corporation.

John E. Thayer Esq. Justice of the Peace, then administered the customary oath to the Clerk, to qualify him for the performance of his duties according to law.

The meeting then proceeded to ballot for a [314] Standing Committee. All the votes cast were for William Hayden, Otis Rich, Samuel L. Abbot, Charles L. Hayward, Thomas B. Wales, Horace Dupee and George Bates, who were declared duly elected.

All the votes cast for Treasurer, were reported to be for Charles L. Hayward and he was declared to be duly elected.

Messrs. Joseph H. Francis, Nathaniel B. Doggett and John T. Dingley were chosen a Committee of Finance.

On motion of Mr. Josiah Bradlee, Messrs. John E. Thayer, Rufus Ellis and Henry W. Torrey were chosen the Standing Committee on Donations.

On motion of Mr. J. P. Bradlee, it was

Voted That the subject of opening Chauncy Place as a public Street, by the City of Boston, be referred to the Standing Committee, and that said Committee have full power to settle with the City all claim which this Corporation may have for damages for said opening, either by suit at law, or Compromise, or in any other mode, and that the Committee be instructed to employ competent legal counsel to assist in said settlement.

On motion of Mr. Bradlee, also, it was

Voted That the Standing Committee be instructed to employ competent legal Counsel to advise with them as to the rights of this Corporation and the liabilities to this Corporation of the purchasers of the houses situated on Summer Street lately belonging to and sold by the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston according to and in virtue of the different bills of purchase and sale to John Redman, Dr. Putnam, A. C. Hersey and Mrs. Davis; and that said Committee have full power to settle all matters in controversy by compromise or in any other matter they may see fit.

Mr. T. B. Wales moved—That the Taxes on the Pews shall be in future assessed at double the present rate, and this motion was seconded by Mr. Hayden.

Mr. Huntington moved to amend this motion by substituting “fifty per cent” for the word “double.” And this amendment was rejected.

Mr. Wales’s motion was then adopted, ten persons [315] voting in the affirmative and nine in the negative.

On motion of Mr. Bradlee, this last vote was reconsidered, eight persons voting in the affirmative and seven in the negative.

Mr. Huntington moved that the whole subject be indefinitely postponed, and this motion was decided in the negative, eight in the affirmative and nine in the negative.

Mr. Hayward moved to amend Mr. Wales’s motion by substituting “seventy-five per cent” for the word “double” and this motion was decided in the negative, eight voting for and nine against it.

Mr. Huntington again moved to postpone the whole subject, and his motion was rejected, eight proprietors voting for, and ten against it.

On motion of Mr. Hayward, the motion of Mr. Wales being withdrawn, it was, by vote of ten to seven

Voted That, in addition to the Taxes already established upon the pews in this Church, there shall be levied and assessed, upon each and every Pew, an amount equal to fifty per centum, or one half the amount heretofore assessed upon said pew, payable, as taxes have heretofore been payable, semi-annually, in the months of April and October, commencing with the present month of April.

On motion of Mr. Hayward, the Treasurer was instructed to pay to the Treasurer of the Unitarian Festival for the present year, the sum of Twenty Dollars.

Meeting Dissolved, Attest.

J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Copy

First Church

April 15, 1856

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church have the honor to submit to the Proprietors, at this their Annual Meeting, the following Report:

The moneys received, on account of this Corporation, for the financial year which closed on the 31st day of March ultimo, were as follow—vis:—

Balance of money, in the Treasurers hands at the Commencement of the year

140.75

Amount of net sales of a certificate of City 5 per cent Stock

1,006.25

Amount of Mrs. Sarah J. Davis’s Note, paid in to the Treasurer

10,000.00

Income from Interest and Dividends

Interest on Dr. C. G. Putnam’s note—one year

660.00

[316] Interest on Mrs. S. J. Davis’s Note—six months

300.00

Dividend on stock in Merchants Bank $4000—8 pr. ct.

320.00

Dividend on Connecticut River R R Stock, $4000—4½ pr. ct.

180.00

Interest on moneys temporarily in the hands of the Treasurer

183.89

1,643.89

Income from Rents:—

Rent of three Basement Rooms

293.75

Rent of Cellar, under Church

100.00

393.75

Received for a pew sold

80.00

Received for Taxes, assessed on the Pews in the Church

2,106.00

Making the whole amount of Receipts, within the last Financial year

15,370.64

The moneys expended, on account of this Corporation, for the same financial year, were for the following objects, vis:

Paid amount borrowed of Edward F. Weld, the former Treasurer

500.00

Invested in Note, amply secured by mortgage

7,000.00

Paid salary of the Rev. Pastor of the Church

3,500.00

Paid expenses of Music

1,200.00

For fixtures to introduce Gas into the Church

342.15

Salary of the Sexton

250.00

Repairs of Building, Furnaces, Organ and Clock

185.15

Fuel, Gas and Water 168.50—19.75—6.00

194.25

Compensation voted to the Proprietors’ Clerk at the last annual meeting

125.00

Collecting Pew Taxes

70.84

Printing, Stationery and Advertising Rooms to let

41.42

Expenses Cleaning Church 28.15 City Tax 23.10

51.25

Premium of Insurance

30.00

Contribution to

Unitarian Festival

20.00

50.00

Making the whole amount of Expenditures within the year

13,510.06

The whole amount of Receipts during the last Financial year, as appears by the foregoing statement was

15,370.64

The whole amount of Expenditures within the same year was

13,510.06

Leaving a balance, in the hands of the Treasurer, on the first day of April, instant, Amounting to

1,860.58

From the above statement of the finances of the last year, it will be apparent to the Proprietors of the Church, that their annual income is now not sufficient to meet other ordinary annual expenses—and that they are rapidly encroaching upon the ancient fund of the Church, to meet their every day’s expenses.

The estimate of the current year’s income and expense may be briefly stated as follows:

[317] Expenses

Income

Pastor’s Salary

3500.00

Taxes on Pews

2040.00

Music

1200.00

Interest on Mortgages

1080.00

Sexton’s Salary

250.00

Dividends on stock

480.00

Fuel

150.00

Rents

300.00

Sundries, Repairs

Total of Income

3,900.00

Insurance, Taxes etc.

300.00

Leaving a deficit of

1,500.00

Total Expense

5,400.00

5,400.00

The Committee submit this subject to the Proprietors, with the expression of their decided opinion, that some measures ought promptly to be taken, to increase the annual income and bring it up to the measure of the expenses. The only means, apparent to the Committee, to bring about this end, is, to increase the Taxes on the Pews.

Within the last year, the very valuable property belonging to the Church, which was long ago, appropriated as an avenue to their place of Worship—and the use of which they have hitherto quietly and peacefully enjoyed for that purpose—has been taken from them, by force of law, by the government of the City of Boston. That portion of the land of the Proprietors of this Church, which constituted their private way to this building—and to which they had given the name of “Chauncy Place,” has been taken by the City authorities for a public highway. Against this measure, whilst it was yet under Consideration, this Committee, in pursuance of instructions from the Proprietors of the Church, have zealously and repeatedly remonstrated and protested. Since, against their efforts, this act has been accomplished, this Committee has respectfully petitioned the Board of Aldermen to grant remuneration to the Proprietors of this Church, for the damage done them by the forcible taking of their property for public uses—but the Board of Aldermen have totally refused to grant any such remuneration, and have given this Committee leave to withdraw their petition. The Proprietors will, of course, consider and determine what further measures they will adopt in reference to this matter.

The subject of certain restrictions contained in the Deeds by which the Proprietors of this Church conveyed the four Dwelling Houses, on Summer Street, heretofore belonging to the Church, has repeatedly been brought before the Proprietors—and a Committee was authorised, at the last Annual Meeting, to make new arrangements with the present owners of those Estates, touching those restrictions. No one of said owners has yet acceded to the terms proposed in the Vote of the Proprietors of the Church. The owner of one of those Estates has converted the building upon it, from a Dwelling House into a Store, which alteration is supposed by some persons to be in [318] violation of the terms and restrictions of the Deed by which the Estate was conveyed to him. The Committee bring this matter before the Proprietors—with the suggestion that it might be well that the Proprietors should direct competent legal advice to be taken, as to the meaning and import of the instruments by which the conveyances of those Estates were made.

All which is respectfully submitted

For the Committee

(Signed) William Hayden Chairman.

a true Copy

attest J. H. Buckingham Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 19, 1856.

A meeting of the Standing Committee, having been duly notified by the Clerk, was held at his office in Court Square, this day, at 4 o’clock P.M. It was called to order by the Clerk, and William Hayden Esq. was unanimously elected Chairman for the ensuing year.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was Voted That

Messrs. Hayden, Hayward and Bates be a Committee to employ Counsel to maintain the rights of this Corporation, and to propose under their direction, to the City of Boston, a reference of the matter in dispute, respecting damages for opening Chauncy Place as a public street.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the same Committee take into consideration the subject of the rights of the Corporation as affected by the doings of the owners of the estates formerly belonging to the Corporation, on Summer St. with instructions to employ legal Counsel.

The Chairman, appointed the following sub-Committees which were approved.

  • On Music, Messrs. Abbott, Wales and Hayward.
  • On Sexton Messrs. Hayden and Wales.
  • On Repairs Messrs. Rich, Dupee and Bates.

Present, at this Meeting, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Dupee, Hayward, Abbott and Wales.

Meeting Dissolved.

Attest J. W. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston October 1, 1856.

A meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church, was held this day, at four o’Clock P.M. at the office of the Clerk.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Bates, Hayward and Wales.

[319] Mr. Hayward stated that the Pastor had communicated to him a proposed arrangement for the alteration of the time of commencing the afternoon services of the different churches in this City, and had expressed a desire to have some action upon the subject, taken by the Standing Committee.

On motion of Mr. Bates the subject was referred to the decision of the Pastor and the Congregation, and he was requested to lay it before the Congregation if he thought it Expedient on Sunday next, after the close of the morning service.

On motion of Mr. Hayward, the use of the Church was granted for the purpose of holding Thursday lectures, if that institution shall be revived, the Corporation being at no expense except for such use.

The Chairman communicated a circular from Reverend James F. Clarke and others in relation to, and inviting delegates to the Unitarian Convention about to be held at Bangor.

On motion of Mr. Bates the subject was referred to the Pastor, to take such action thereon as he shall deem expedient.

On motion of Mr. Bates, it was Voted That the Standing Committee will hereafter hold regular meetings, at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street, at four o’clock of the afternoons of each Friday next preceding the Communion Sunday, of each month, until further order.

Meeting Dissolved.

J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

In pursuance of notice given from the Pulpit, a meeting of the Society was holden, after the morning service, Sunday Oct 12th 1856. The Reverend Pastor being absent from the City, the Chairman of the Standing Committee presided.

The subject of changing the time of holding the afternoon service having been brought before the meeting, it was voted, on motion of Josiah Bradlee Esq.—that, from the present time, until the first Sabbath of October next, the afternoon service shall commence at three o’clock. And the meeting was then dissolved.

[320] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston October 31, 1856.

In pursuance of the vote passed at the last meeting of the Standing Committee, a regular meeting of the Committee was held at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street, this day, Friday October 31, 1856, at four o’clock P.M.

On motion of Mr. Bates, it was

Voted That in consideration of the arduous and unremitting services of Mr. William Hayden, as Chairman of the Standing Committee, and his personal attention to the interests of this Corporation, his taxes on pews, for the year 1856 are hereby remitted, and cancelled.

The meeting was then dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston November 28, 1856.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street, this afternoon.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Abbott, Wales and Hayward.

After conversation on several matters relating to business, but without any direct action, it was

Voted That the next regular meeting of this Committee, which is appointed for Friday next, December 5th, be omitted.

Chauncy Place Meeting House, circa 1865

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston February 27, 1857.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street, this afternoon.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Wales, Abbott, Hayward and Dupee.

The Clerk communicated the fact of the resignation of Dr. Bates as member of the Committee, and the letter of Resignation was ordered to be placed on file.

In consequence of the short period which is to elapse before the Annual Meeting of the Corporation, and the fact that there is no pressing business now before the Committee, no further action in respect to the resignation of Dr. Bates was deemed necessary.

[321] The Pastor was present at this meeting, by invitation of the Committee, and a free but not formal conversation and interchange of opinion was held on several subjects, particularly respecting a better ventilation, the Singing, and the duties of the Sexton.

No formal Vote was taken and the meeting was Dissolved.

J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Annual Meeting of the Corporation. Boston April 21, 1857.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been duly and legally notified by the Clerk, was held at the Vestry of the Meeting House in Chauncy Street this afternoon at four o’clock.

Reverend N. L. Frothingham was chosen Moderator, and in consequence of the absence of the Clerk, Joseph H. Francis was chosen Clerk, pro tem.

Mr. Hayden presented and read the Annual Report of the Standing Committee, which was accepted and ordered to be recorded and placed on file.

Mr. Hayward presented and read his Annual Report as Treasurer of the Corporation, which was accepted and ordered to be placed on file.

The meeting then proceeded to ballot for officers for the ensuing year, and the following were declared to be elected.

Joseph H. Buckingham, Clerk.

Charles L. Hayward, Treasurer.

William Hayden

Standing Committee.

Otis Rich

Samuel L. Abbot

Thomas B. Wales

Horace Dupee

C. L. Hayward

Prescott Bigelow

On motion of Mr. Wales, it was Voted That the Treasurer be paid Fifty Dollars each year for his services, until further order.

On motion of Mr. Hayward, it was Voted That the Treasurer be directed to pay Twenty Dollars, as a contribution from the funds of this Corporation towards the Festival of the Unitarian Association for the year 1857.

Messrs. Joseph H. Francis, N. B. Doggett, and T. C. A. Dexter, were chosen the Committee on Finance for the ensuing year.

Meeting Dissolved, Attest

Joseph H. Francis, Clerk Pro Tem.

[322] Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Suffolk s.s.

Before me on this the ninth day of May A.D. 1857, personally appeared Joseph H. Buckingham, and he made oath that he would truly record all votes passed at any meeting of the Corporation of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston and of the Standing Committee thereof and otherwise perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall hold said office, J. H. Buckingham.

J. M. Pinkerton

Justice of the Peace.

Copy

First Church, Chauncy St.

Boston, April 21st, 1857.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, in Boston, submit to the said proprietors, at this their Annual Meeting, the following Report.

Within the financial year, which commenced on the first day of April, 1856, and terminated on the thirty first day of March 1857, inclusive, the following amounts of income were received, viz.

The Balance of money, in the Treasurer’s hands, at the commencement of the year

1,860.58

Amount of taxes on pews, collected within the year

2,847.75

Amount of Interest and Dividends received, viz:

Interest on Mortgage of $11,000

660.00

Interest on Mortgage of $7,000

420.00

Interest on money on hand

7.50

Dividend on $4000 Stock in Merchants Bank

320.00

Dividend on $4000 Stock in Conn. Riv. R.R.

80.00

1,487.50

Rents of Rooms and Cellular, under the Church

225.00

Sale of a pew

100.00

Making the whole Income of the year

6,520.83

Within the same year, there have been the following Expenditures:

Salary of the Rev. Pastor of [323] the Church

3,500.00

Expenses of Music

1,297.60

Salary of the Sexton 250.

Repairs Building and Furnaces 129.77

379.77

Collecting Pew Taxes 108.11, Fuel 93.50

Repairs organ 60.

261.61

Salary of Clerk—2 years. 50.

Cushions for Settees, in vestry 91.33

141.33

Premium of Insurance. 30

City Tax 24.20—Printing and Stationary 16.69

70.89

Contribution to Unitarian Festival 20.

Gas and Water 16.

36.

Sundry incidental expenses; of small amounts

44.20

Making the whole amount of Expenditures of the year

5,731.40

And leaving a Balance of money, in the hands of the Treasurer, at the close of the year, amounting to

$789.43

The whole amount of Pew Taxes, unpaid at the close of the year, was $279.—a portion of which has been since paid, and will go forward, into the accounts of the next year.

The property of the Proprietors, independent of the Church Building, and the lands under and contiguous to the same, consists of two notes of hand, amounting to Eighteen Thousand Dollars, amply secured by mortgages on Real Estate within the City—Forty shares in the Capital Stock of the Merchants Bank of Boston, and Forty shares in the Connecticut River Railroad.

By a vote of the Proprietors of this Church, passed, at the last Annual Meeting, full authority was given to the Standing Committee to present, adjust and settle the claim against the City of Boston, for damages sustained by the Church, by [324] reason of the taking by force of law, a portion of their land to lay out a public highway.

The Committee were also empowered, if need should be, to employ legal counsel, and enforce the claim of the Church, by such legal proceedings as might be deemed necessary.

The Committee have endeavored, by petition and otherwise, to induce the City Government to make just compensation for the land taken, and the damage done to the Church, in these premises. The Committee have invited the Government to award the Church such amount as they might deem equitable, or to submit the matter to Refferees, to be mutually chosen;—representing that this Church was a quiet, peaceable, religious association, to whom all controversy and quarrel about pecuniary matters was extremely distasteful, and not to be entered into, by the church, except as a last resort.

These representations and applications, however, have been of no effect—and they have hardly been treated with common courtesy—All remuneration for the property taken from, and damage done to, the Church, has been utterly refused. While the Government of the City has been paying money, almost without stint or limit, for property which they have taken for another highway not much more extensive than that in the vicinity of this church, and into which the Property of this church has been taken, they refuse all compensation for the property taken, and the damage done, in the laying out of this avenue. Under these circumstances, and acting under the vote of the Proprietors of the Church, the [325] Committee have deemed it their duty, to resort to the law for relief. They have taken the advice, and engaged the services of the Hon. Peleg W. Chandler, a gentleman learned in the law, and peculiarly conversant with this class of cases. A suit has been brought, in the name of the Proprietors of this Church, against the City of Boston, and is now pending, and awaiting its term for trial, in the Superior Court of this County. Hopes were entertained that it would come up for trial, at the term of the Court which is now near its close. That, however, it not now probable;—and it must be deferred until the next Term, which commences in May. The Counsel is prepared, and the case is ready for trial, and only awaits its turn, in the regular succession of cases on the docket.

Respectfully submitted,

For the Committee,

(signed,) William Hayden Chairman,

(signed,) Thomas B. Wales.

A true copy

attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Organisation of the Standing Committee. Boston May 9, 1857.

A meeting of the members elect, of the Standing Committee having been called was held this day at the office of the Clerk No 5 Congress Street, Boston. A quorum being present, the Clerk having previously been legally qualified, called the meeting to order, and William Hayden was chosen Chairman of the Committee for the ensuing year.

The Chairman then nominated and the Committee approved the following Special Committees:

  • On Music—Messrs. Abbot, Wales, and Hayward.
  • On Sexton—Messrs. Hayward, and Wales.
  • On Repairs—Messrs. Rich, Dupee, and Bigelow.

[326] On motion of Mr. Hayward, there having been an omission by the Corporation, at its Annual Meeting to elect a Committee on Donations, it was Voted That Reverend Rufus Ellis, John E. Thayer Esquire and Reverend N. L. Frothingham be appointed and requested to serve for the ensuing year, under the vote of the Corporation, passed April 18, 1854 as a Standing Committee on Donations.

On motion of Mr. Wales, the Chairman was requested to attend and act for the First Church Society, a proposed meeting on Monday next at the Old South Chapel, on the subject of making some arrangement respecting the hours for commencing Divine Service on Sunday afternoons.

The Chairman made known the request of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company for the use of the Meeting House on the first Monday of June, next, and on motion of Mr. Hayward, it was Voted That the request be granted, on condition that the Organ shall only be used by, or under the direction of the regular Organist (Mr. Paine) of the Corporation.

Meeting dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston September 28, 1857.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the office of the Clerk, No 5 Congress Street in this city, this day, at half past one o’clock P.M.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it having been stated by the Chairman that certain propositions had been received from the proprietors of houses formerly belonging to this Corporation, on Summer Street, relating to a removal of certain restrictions in their Deeds of Conveyance,

It was Voted That the Clerk be directed to call a meeting of the Corporation, to be held at the Vestry of the meeting house, in Chauncy Street, on Tuesday October 6th 1857 at four o’clock P.M. on business of importance. The meeting to be notified by printed notification placed in the pews next Sunday morning and posted in the entry.

Meeting Dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Special Meeting of the Corporation. Boston October 6, 1857.

A special Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, was held this day at four o’clock P.M. in the vestry of the Meeting House of the Corporation [327] in Chauncy Street. It was called to order by the Clerk, who read the Record of the last meeting of the Standing Committee, and stated that all the directions having been complied with, and the meeting legally notified, it was now competent to proceed to business.

On motion of Dr. Bates the meeting proceeded to the Choice of Moderator, and Deacon James H. Foster was chosen.

Mr. Hayden, chairman of the Standing Committee, after a brief verbal explanation, submitted the following Preamble and Resolutions, which, on motion of Dr. G. Bates were unanimously adopted and passed:

Whereas, The Proprietors of this Church have, by various Deeds, conveyed to sundry persons four several Estates, with the Dwelling Houses thereon, bounded on Summer Street, in Boston, and contiguous to each other, and to land on Chauncy Street now belonging to said First Church, namely,

To John Redman, one Estate conveyed to him by Deed dated October 15, 1842;

To Alfred C. Hersey, one Estate conveyed to him by Deed dated November 1st, 1843;

To Charles G. Putnam, one Estate conveyed to him by Deed dated April 24th, 1846; and

To Sarah J. Davis, on other Estate, conveyed to her by Deed dated August 1st, 1846; and

Whereas, the Deeds, by which the afore-mentioned conveyances were made, contain certain limitations and restrictions as to buildings to be erected on said Estates, and as to the uses and occupation of said Estates;

It is now, thereupon,

Voted That upon the payment of the sum of three thousand dollars, in behalf of the Estate aforementioned as conveyed to John Redman, and the sum of Two thousand Dollars in behalf of each of the other three Estates—the said sums to be paid to the Treasurer of said Church, for the use and benefit of the Proprietors thereof—the said Proprietors will release said Estates from all limitations and restrictions contained in said Deeds—provided, however, that such release shall not be taken to affect the rights of way granted by the Proprietors of this Church, to the Purchasers of those Estates, over the land formerly called Chauncy Place, and in the passage way of six feet wide between the Church land and said Estate, nor the mutual obligation of all the parties to keep said passage way in repair; and, further, that such release shall not be taken to affect the rights in, or obligations concerning, any wells or drains, provided for in the Deeds by which the Proprietors [328] of this Church conveyed said Estates to said grantees.

Voted That upon the payment, as aforesaid, by those having an interest in each of the aforementioned Estates, of its proportionate sum, as hereinbefore mentioned, the limitations and restrictions upon the Estate for which such payment is made, may be released.

Voted That Messrs. William Hayden and Charles L. Hayward, be a Committee, in behalf of the Proprietors of the Church, with full authority to make, execute, and deliver, such Deeds, or other instruments, as may be necessary to carry into effect the provisions of the foregoing votes.

Voted That any sums of money which may be received by the Treasurer, under the preceding votes, shall be safely invested by him, for the benefit of the Proprietors of this Church, under direction of the Standing Committee of the Church.

On motion of Mr. Josiah Bradlee, the meeting was then Dissolved.

attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 6, 1858.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Vestry, in Chauncy Street, this afternoon, at half past three o’clock. Present, Messrs. Hayden, Abbott, Hayward, Wales, Rich, and Dupee.

On motion of Mr. Rich, the Committee on Repairs was instructed to cause a fence to be erected on the North line of the property of the Corporation, between the Church and the passage way used in common with the estates formerly belonging to the Corporation, on Summer Street. The Committee to have full power as to the style of the fence.

On motion of the Chairman, it was Voted that the Pastor have full authority to make use of the Church on Thursdays, at his discretion for the revival of the Thursday lectures.

On motion of Mr. Rich, the Chairman was requested to prepare the Annual Report of the Standing Committee for presentation to the Corporation.

Meeting Dissolved, attest,

J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 19, 1858.

A meeting of the Standing Committee, was held at the Vestry in Chauncy Street, this day at twelve o’clock M.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Abbott, Hayward, Wales.

The Chairman submitted his draft of the annual report to be presented to the next meeting of the Corporation which was read and unanimously approved.

Meeting Dissolved, attest

J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

[329] Annual Meeting of the Corporation. Boston April 20, 1858.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been duly and legally notified by the Clerk was held at the vestry of the meeting house in Chauncy Street, this afternoon at half past three o’Clock, and was called to order by the Clerk.

Rev. N. L. Frothingham was unanimously chosen Moderator.

After prayer, by Reverend Mr. Ellis, the Pastor, Mr. Hayden, from the Standing Committee presented the Annual Report from that body, which was read, accepted and ordered to be recorded and placed on file. It is as follows:

First Church, Chauncy Street,

April 20th 1858.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, submit to the Proprietors, at their Annual Meeting this day, the following Report, upon the affairs of the Corporation.

In the last financial year—from April 1st 1857, to March 31st 1858—the following sums of money were received, by the Treasurer, on account of the Proprietors of the Church—vis.

The balance of money on hand, at the commencement of the year

789.43

One year’s interest on a note and mortgage for $11,000, belonging to the Church

660.00

One year’s interest on a note and mortgage for $7,000

420.00

Dividends for the year, on 35 shares in the Merchants Bank

245.00

Dividends, for six months, on 5 shares 3½ per ct.

17.50

Dividend on 40 shares on Conn. River Railroad $2.

80.00

Making amount received for interest and dividends

1,422.50

Rent of Rooms in the Basement of the Church

208.32

Rent of Cellar under the Church

100.—

Making amount received for Rents

308.32

Received for a Pew sold

50.—

Amount of Taxes on Pews, collected within the year

2,603.52

Amount received of the Trustees of John Redman’s Estate, for the release of certain limitations and restrictions upon their estate, on the corner of Summer and Chauncy Streets

3,000.—

Making the whole amount received within the year, on account of the Church

8,173.77

Within the same year, the following Expenditures were incurred, vis:

The Salary of the Pastor of the Church

3,500.00

Expenses for music

1,299.—

Repairs of the building

285.83

Salary of the Sexton

250.—

Legal services, in relation to the titles of Estates on Summer Street, held under conveyances from [330] this Church, drawing Deeds of Release etc.

185.00

Advance to Counsel, on account of expenses of suit against the City, for damages in laying out Chauncy Street

150.—

Collecting taxes and rents 157.08, Fuel 139.60

Cleaning 107.82

404.50

Treasurer salary 2 years 100

Premium of Insurance 45.

145.00

City taxes 27.90 Unitarian Festival 20.

Salary of Clerk 25.

72.90

Furniture, Books, Printing, Stationery, Water, Gas etc.

78.47

Making the actual expenses of the Church for the Year

6,370.70

Amount of Cost of a Certificate of Massachusetts 6 per cent State Stock, with accrued interest, for $1000

1,038.42

Amount of actual payments made by the Treasurer on account of the Church, within the Year

7,409.12

And leaving a balance of money, in the hands of the Treasurer, March 30th 1858, the close of the financial year, amounting to

764.65

The whole amount of Pew Taxes unpaid, at the close of the year, was $565, somewhat larger than the amount reported last year, but not deemed extraordi[na]rily large, when the almost universal difficulties and embarrasments of the last year are taken into view.

The property of the Proprietors of the Church—independent of the Church building, and land under and contiguous thereto—consists of three Notes of hand, amply secured by mortgage of City property, amounting to Twenty thousand dollars; Forty shares of the Capital Stock of the Merchants Bank, of Boston; One certificate of Mass. 6 per cent State Stock, par value One thousand Dollars; and Forty Shares of the Capital Stock of the Connecticut River Railroad.

Within the last year, the sum of Three thousand dollars has been received, in money, from the Trustees of the Estate of John Redman, for the release, by the Proprietors of this Church, of certain limitations and restrictions upon the Estate sold by said Proprietors to said Redman, and situated on the corner of Summer and Chauncy Streets. A Note, signed by Charles G. Putnam, for Two thousand dollars, secured by an additional Mortgage on his Estate on Summer Street, next adjoining the Redman Estate, has also been received. This note and Mortgage were taken, in payment for the release of certain limitations and restrictions upon the Estate sold by the Proprietors of this Church to Dr. Putnam.

In their Annual Report of the last year, the Standing Committee very fully stated to the Proprietors the position in which the claim of this Church, against the City of Boston, for damages to their property by the laying out of Chauncy Street, then stood. The Committee advised the Proprietors of the unavailing efforts that had been made, on their part, to adjust the claim without recourse to the Courts of Law; that they had been unable to make such adjustment; and that a suit at law had been commenced, and was then awaiting its due course for trial.

Since the last Annual Meeting, this suit against the City has had two trials, before two different Judges and two different Juries. At both these trials, many witnesses were examined and the case was ably and elaborately argued on both sides. [331] At both the trials, the Court ruled decidedly that the Church was entitled to damages—the amount of damages being, of course, left to the Jury to decide. On the first trial, the Jury disagreed—and the case was taken from them, and a new trial ordered. It was well understood, however, that eleven of the twelve Jurymen were in favor of giving the Church a sum of money somewhere between fifteen and sixteen thousand dollars, and would not agree to assess the damages at less than the smallest of those sums—while the other Juryman thought that a less amount should be given.

At the second trial of the case, after giving it full consideration, the Jury rendered a verdict in favor of the Church, assessing the damages at Seventeen Thousand dollars. To some portion of the form or proceeding, and to some points of the ruling of the Court, in this last trial, the Counsel for the City has taken exceptions—and, unless they are withdrawn, these exceptions must go up to the Supreme Court for decision. As these Exceptions are represented, by the Counsel of the Church, to be merely technical, the Chairman of this Committee has represented to the Mayor, and to various members of the Board of Aldermen, the great reluctance felt by the Committee, to pursue any further, this Controversy with the City—the almost certainly of a more favorable result to the Church—and requested that the Board would direct the City Solicitor to withdraw his Exceptions, and allow the Church to take judgment on the verdict of the Jury. Although the members consulted have expressed no particular objections to this course, yet nothing has been done respecting the matter.

The only course left, then, for the Proprietors of the Church, is, to abide the result. It is believed, by the Counsel who have conducted the case in behalf of the Church, that the Exceptions taken by the Solicitor of the City are immaterial, and will not be sustained by the Supreme Court. In that case, judgment for the Church will be ordered on the verdict, with interest—and the costs will devolve upon the City. In case the Exceptions should be sustained, the case will be ordered for another, and a third trial. The very fact, that the City Government has so pertinaciously refused all advances towards an amicable adjustment of this claim—and has forced the Church through three trials of the case in Court, ought to, and will, unquestionably, operate against the City, in a new trial—and no fears are entertained, by this committee or their Counsel, that any less sum will be awarded to the Church, than that contained in the verdict of the last Jury. If the City does not conclude to withdraw its exceptions, it will probably be a year before the case can come up before the Supreme Court, for its decision—and, in the meanwhile, the interests of the Church will be carefully protected, by the able counsel employed by the Committee.

All which is respectfully submitted. For the Committee

William Hayden Chairman.

The Treasurer stated verbally that circumstances of an unavoidable nature had prevented his annual account from being examined and compared with his vouchers by the Committee on Finance, although it was ready; that [332] the Committee is to have a meeting tomorrow for that purpose; and that all the facts contained in his account are fully set forth in the Report of the Standing Committee which has just been read.

Whereupon it was Voted That the said Report be made to the Standing Committee when audited, to be by them disposed of.

A communication was received from the Pastor, in relation to the reestablishing of the Thursday Lectures, which will involve some extra expense for Sexton’s services, fuel etc. and suggesting the appointment of a Committee to act with him on the subject. The letter also asked an expression of opinion as to the approval of the proprietors in his asking ministers of other denominations to participate in those lectures. The latter also asked some direction as to the hour of commencing afternoon service during the summer, and suggesting the propriety of inviting some two or three other Churches to worship with us during the summer months. On motion of Mr. Ralph Huntington the communication was unanimously referred to the Standing Committee, with full power to act as they think best in all the matters referred to.

The meeting, on motion of Mr. Humphrey proceeded to the election of officers for the year ensuing. Mr. Francis was appointed a Committee to collect, sort, and count the ballots, and he reported that the following were unanimously elected.

Joseph H. Buckingham, Clerk.

Charles L. Hayward, Treasurer.

William Hayden

Standing Committee.

Otis Rich

Thomas B. Wales

Charles L. Hayward

Horace Dupee

S. L. Abbott

Prescott Bigelow

and they were declared duly elected officers of the Corporation.

On motion of Mr. Hayward the Treasurer was ordered to pay twenty Dollars, as a contribution from the funds of the Corporation, to the Expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1858.

The Moderator nominated and the meeting chose Joseph H. Francis, N. B. Doggett and T. C. A. Dexter as the Finance Committee for the ensuing year.

On motion of Mr. Hayden, it was voted, that the standing Committee on Donations, for the ensuing year, consist of Rev. Rufus Ellis, Rev. N. L. Frothingham and Dr. Samuel L. Abbott.

[333] Mr. Hayden, from a special Committee, appointed at a meeting of the Proprietors held Oct. 6, 1857 made a Report, as follows:

First Church Chauncy Street

April 20th 1858

At a special meeting of the Proprietors of this Church, holden October 6th 1857, a Preamble and certain accompanying votes were passed, authorising the release of the restrictions and limitations contained in the Deeds of the Estates on Summer Street, sold by the Proprietors of this Church, upon the payment of certain specified sums of money by the present owners of said Estates—and the Undersigned were appointed a Committee, in behalf of the Church “with full authority to make, execute and deliver such deeds, or other instruments as might be necessary to carry into effect” the several votes then passed.

Under the authority thus vested in them—and acting under the advice of learned Counsel, who had been employed to make a full investigation into the rights of the Church, in relation to the Conveyances of those estates, and the nature and extent of the restrictions contained in them, the Undersigned entered into negociations with the Trustees under the will of John Redman, having possession of the Estate on the corner of Chauncy Street—and with Dr. Charles G. Putnam, owning the next adjoining Estate on Summer Street. These gentlemen at once assented to the terms specified in the votes, above alluded to, as passed at the special meeting of the Proprietors—and paid the amounts indicated as equivalents for the release of the restrictions on their several estates—and thereupon the Undersigned immediately executed and delivered the proper legal instruments of Release. The Proprietors of those Estates have, therefore, clear and unrestricted titles to build upon and use them. The sum of $3000—was paid by Redman’s Trustees, in money—and the sum of $2000 was paid by Dr. C. G. Putnam, by an additional note and mortgage upon the premises from which the restrictions were thus removed.

The Proprietors of the other two Estates—Mr. Alfred C. Hersey and Mrs. Sarah J. Davis—have been advised of the authority vested in your Committee to release the restrictions on their Estates, upon certain conditions; but they have not yet seen fit to avail themselves of this mode of adjustment. It will remain, therefore, with the Proprietors of the Church to determine, at this meeting, whether they will continue the authority vested in this Committee, so far as relates to those estates, or prescribe some other terms, or let the matter drop altogether.

Respectfully submitted

William Hayden

Charles L. Hayward

Committee.

On motion of Mr. Huntington this Report was accepted, and ordered to be recorded and filed.

[334] On motion of Mr. Huntington, it was

Voted That the Preamble and Votes passed at a special meeting of this Corporation held October 6, 1857, in relation to the restrictions and liabilities existing on the Estates on Summer Street contiguous to the land now belonging to the First Church, be and remain in full force and effect, until the objects contemplated thereby are completed; except, that, in addition to the sums therein demanded for the Release of the restrictions on the Estates of Mr. A. C. Hersey and Mrs. Sarah J. Davis, there shall be demanded of them interest at six percent per annum on the sums to be paid, from the first day of November A.D. 1857 to the day when the money shall be paid.

Voted That full power and authority are hereby given to Messrs. William Hayden and Charles L. Hayward to perform all the duties prescribed in that preamble and votes, and that they be continued as the Committee therein provided for. (Rescinded; Vide, Vote passed Dec. 15, 1864.)

Meeting Dissolved.

Attest J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Suffolk s.s.

Before me, on this the twenty fourth day of April A.D. 1858 personally came Joseph H. Buckingham, and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation, and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

J. H. Buckingham

Lynde W. Buckingham, Justice of the Peace.

Organisation of the Standing Committee. Boston May 24, 1858.

A meeting of the Standing Committee for the year 1858 was held at the Vestry in the Meeting House, Chauncy Street, at half past three o’clock this afternoon. William Hayden Esq. was chosen Chairman of the Committee.

In the absence of the Clerk of the Corporation, Charles L. Hayward was chosen Clerk pro. tem.

Mr. Hayden presented a communication from the Antient and Honorable Artillery Company requesting the use of the meeting house on the first Monday of June next, which on motion of Mr. Abbot was agreed to on the same terms as the [335] request of last year was granted; viz.—That the Organ shall only be used by or under the direction of the regular Organist, (Mr. Paine) of the Corporation.

The Chairman then nominated and the Committee approved of the following

  • On Music—Messrs. Abbot, Wales and Hayward.
  • On Sexton—Messrs. Hayward and Wales.
  • On Repairs Messrs. Rich, Dupee and Bigelow.

On motion of Mr. Abbot, the Chairman was authorised and requested to invite, in the name of this Society, the Reverend Mr. Gannett’s Society now worshipping in Federal Street, to attend this Church and join with us in the usual religious services during the time their own house may be closed.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest

Charles L. Hayward

Clerk pro-tem.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston July 27, 1858.

A meeting of the Standing Committee having been called by order of the Chairman, was held at the Vestry of the Meeting House, in Chauncy Street at half past three o’clock this afternoon.

Present, Messrs. Hayden, Wales, Dupee, and Bigelow.

The Chairman communicated a letter of thanks of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, for the use of the Meeting House on the first Monday of June last. Ordered to be placed on file.

Also

A copy of his letter to the Federal St. Society, written in compliance with a vote of invitation passed at the last meeting of the Committee, and a letter of acceptance from that Society, signed by Stephen Fairbanks, Chairman of its Standing Committee. Ordered to be placed on file.

Also

An application from Rev. Rufus Ellis for a lease of a room under the Church, at the rent now paid for the same, whenever it shall be vacated.

Mr. Hayden stated that the Treasurer had agreed to the proposal under his general authority to let pews, and rooms in the building, and on motion of Mr. Wales, the action of the Treasurer was approved.

The Chairman gave notice that, having become aware of certain encroachments made upon the [336] land owned in fee by this corporation (but over which a passage only, had been granted) by certain persons building on adjoining estates, he had addressed a letter to George H. Kuhn Esq., agent of the Estate of the late John Redman, and another to Dr. C. G. Putnam, requiring those encroachments to be immediately removed, in order to avoid legal process as against trespassers. In reply to these notes he had been assured by Mr. Bryant, the architect employed, that the trespasses had been committed by accident in consequence of a misunderstanding on his part, of the actual rights of the parties; that opening for cellar doors which have been made into the passage way shall be immediately closed; that the foundation wall of the new building, which projects a few inches under the said passage way and beyond the line of the two estates, could not, probably be of injury to the Corporation, and he requested that it might be allowed to remain as it is built, the proper persons giving a sufficient legal document to show that the ground occupied by said projection remains in fee in this Corporation.

On motion of Mr. Wales, it was Voted That the proprietors of said estates be required to remove forthwith, all obstructions to a free passage over the six feet passage way used in common by this corporation and the four estates on Summer Street, the fee of which passage is in this Corporation; and that the projection of the foundation wall now built under said passage may be allowed to remain, on condition a satisfactory obligation shall be given by the proper persons to secure to this Corporation all its present rights in law and equity.

Meeting dissolved.

attest

J. H. Buckingham

Clerk of the Corporation.

[337] A Meeting of the Standing Committee of the First Church was held in the basement of the Church at 3½ o’clock p.m. December 30, 1858.

Present Messrs. Hayden, Wales, Abbot, Bigelow and Hayward.

The Clerk not being present, Charles L. Hayward was chosen Clerk pro. tem.

The Chairman laid before the Committee a communication from Nahum Capen Esq. Postmaster, proposing to hire a portion of the vacant land, and the two Northerly Basement Rooms of the Church, and after consideration, it was,

Voted That until the decision of the suit of this Church against the City, for compensation for land taken into Chauncy Street, the Committee deem it adviseable not to make any new arrangements in regard to the Church property—and therefore, the Committee decline, for the present at least, to accede to the Postmaster’s proposition, and the Chairman was requested to apprize Mr. Capen of this decision of the Committee.

Messrs. Hayden and Hayward were appointed a Sub-Committee, to examine into the present tenute, of Pews in this Church, upon which the Taxes remain unpaid, to procure the conveyance to the Church, in cases in which it can be done, of those Pews upon which Taxes are not likely to be paid; and to consider the expediency of advertising for Public Sale the Pews belonging to delinquent Proprietors—with instructions to report at the next annual meeting of the Proprietors of the Church.

On motion of Mr. Hayward, it was Voted That no charge be made to William Hayden Esq. Chairman, for Taxes on his two Pews, for the Year ending April 1st 1859.

Dr. Abbott, in behalf of the Sub Committee on Music stated that a proposition had been submitted to the Sub Committee, by Mr. Paine, the Organist, for the procurement and employment of an additional number of Singers, sufficient to constitute a double Choir, for the performance of Music in the Church—but in consideration of the increased expense involved, The Committee Voted that it was not expedient to adopt the proposed change.

The Committee then Adjourned.

Charles L. Hayward

Clerk Pro tem.

[338] January 30, 1859.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held after the morning services of the Church, this day to consider what preparatory measures are proper to be taken, in reference to the Funeral Solemnities of the Eminent Historian and Excellent Man, William H. Prescott, late a worshipper in this Church, tomorrow afternoon.

It was therefore Voted That the Chairman of this Committee and the Reverend Dr. Frothingham and Doctor Abbot, be and they are hereby appointed a Sub Committee, with instructions, and with full authority, to take such measures as they may deem necessary and proper, to prepare the Church for the occasion, and to evince the estimation in which the deceased was held by his fellow worshippers of this Church.

Charles L. Hayward

Clerk Pro tem.

Saturday April 16, 1859.

A Meeting of the Standing Committee was held at 4. o’clock this afternoon in the Vestry of the Church. Present the Chairman and Messrs. Abbot, Dupee, Bigelow etc.

The Chairman, presented to the Committee a Report, on the financial and other affairs of the Corporation, prepared for the purpose of being laid before the Proprietors at the Annual Meeting to be holden on Tuesday next.

The Report was adopted by the Committee, and the Chairman was requested to present the same at the Annual Meeting.

Various matters relating to the affairs of the Church were considered and discussed.

And the Committee then adjourned.

Charles L. Hayward

Clerk Pro tem.

[339] Annual Meeting of the Corporation. Boston April 19, 1859.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the vestry of the Meeting-house in Chauncey Street, this afternoon at four o’clock, and was called to order by William Hayden Esq. and organised by the choice of J. Putnam Bradlee as Moderator.

Prayer having been offered by Reverend Rufus Ellis, the Pastor, the Meeting proceeded to ballot for Officers of the Corporation for the ensuing ecclesiastical year, which resulted in a unanimous choice as follows, viz: Clerk, George Oliver Harris who thereupon took the requisite oath, as follows,

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Suffolk s.s.

Before me, this nineteenth day of April AD. 1859, personally appeared George Oliver Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation, and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

Otis Rich

Justice of the Peace.

Treasurer: Charles L. Hayward.

Standing Committee: William Hayden, Otis Rich, Thomas B. Wales, Charles L. Hayward, Horace Dupee, Samuel L. Abbot, Prescott Bigelow and they were declared duly elected.

[340] William Hayden Esq. presented and read to the meeting the Annual Report from the Standing Committee, and it was

Voted That the same be accepted, recorded and placed on file; it is as follows, viz.

First Church, Chauncey Street

April 19th 1859.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” at this Annual meeting of the said Proprietors, respectfully submit the following Report:

“Within the financial year, which commenced on the first day of April 1858, and closed on the 31st day of March 1859, the following sums of money were received, by the Treasurer, on account of this Corporation—viz.

The balance of money on hand, at the commencement of the year

764.65

Dividends and Interest

Two dividends on 40 Shares of Stock in the Merchants Bank of Boston. 6½ per cent on $4000.

260.00

Two dividends on 40 Shares of Stock in the Connecticut River Railroad. 4 per cent on $4000.

160.00

Interest on Mass. State Stock 6 per cent on $1000.

60.00

Interest on three Notes, payable to the Proprietors of this Church, and secured by mortgages on Real Estate in Boston 6 per cent on $20000.

1200.00

Amount of Dividends and Interest received

1680.00

Rents

Amount of rent received for two Basement Rooms under the Church

200.00

Amount received for rent of the Cellar

100.00

Making amount received for Rents

300.00

Amount of Taxes on Pews collected within the year

2932.50

Amount received for sale of ten Shares of Stock in the Merchants Bank at 105½ per cent

1055.00

Making the whole amount of money received within the year

6732.15

Within the same year, the following Expenditures were made on account of the Corporation, viz.

The salary of the Pastor of the Church

3500.00

Expenses of Music

1296.00

Repairs of the Organ

331.75

Compensation to the Sexton

298.75

Fuel

157.56

Amount carried forward

5584.06

6732.15

[341]

Amounts brought forward

5584.06

6732.15

Collecting taxes and rents

157.05

On account of expenses of suit at law vs. City of Boston

150.00

Expenses for repairs and cleaning the building

146.75

Salaries of the Treasurer $50. and Clerk $25.

75.00

Premium of Insurance $45. City Tax $25.80

70.80

Books and Printing $20.20 Contribution to Unitarian Festival $20.

40.20

Survey and plans of Church land $15. Gas $19.70 Water $6.

40.70

Making the actual amount of expenses for the year,

6264.56

and leaving a balance of money in the hands of the Treasurer, at the close of the financial year—to be carried forward to the next year—amounting to

467.59

The property of this Corporation—independently of the Church building, and the land under and adjoining the same—consists at the present time of Three several Notes of hand, amply secured by mortgages of Real Estate within the City, amounting to Twenty thousand dollars; Thirty Shares of the Capital Stock of the Merchants Bank, of Boston; One certificate of Mass. State Stock, for One thousand dollars, at 6 per cent; and Forty Shares of the Capital Stock of the Connecticut River Railroad.

In their Annual Report of the last year, this Committee stated, very fully, the position of the suit, in law, of this Church against the City of Boston, for damages sustained, by the laying out of Chauncey Street, The Proprietors were advised, in that Report, that two trials of the case had then already taken place—that the Jury, in the last trial, had awarded the sum of Seventeen thousand dollars, as damages, to the Church—and that, on certain exceptions taken by the counsel of the City, the case had been carried up to the Supreme Court. Since that last Report, nothing new has ocurred, in reference to the case. The great number of cases before that Court taking precedence of this, have prevented its coming up for decision—and it is now certain that a decision cannot be had, until the Law Term of the Court, in November next. In the meantime, the interests of the Church will be taken care of, by its Counsel—who are sanguine in the opinion that the exceptions taken by the City to the proceedings of the lower Court will not be sustained by the Supreme Court—in which case, judgment will be ordered on the verdict with interests and costs against the City. In case the exceptions are sustained by the Supreme Court, another trial of the case will be ordered, and it is confidently believed, by the Counsel and by the Committee, that a verdict will be obtained, quite as favorable to the Church as that rendered by the last Jury on the subject.

Respectfully submitted to the Proprietors

For the Committee—William Hayden, Chairman.

[342] The Treasurer being absent from town Joseph H. Francis Esq. Chairman of the Committee on Finance stated to the meeting that the Treasurer had submitted to said Committee his account for the past year, which they had examined and proved by the vouchers and found to be correct and in order. It was then

Voted That this statement be accepted by the meeting and that the said Chairman be requested to obtain from the Treasurer a copy of his last yearly account and hand it to the Clerk to be placed on file.

The Moderator nominated the following gentlemen as the Finance Committee for the ensuing year, Joseph H. Francis, N. B. Doggett, T. C. A. Dexter, and they were chosen by a unanimous vote of the meeting.

On motion of William Hayden Esq.,—it was

Voted unanimously, That the Standing Committee on Donations for the ensuing year, consist of Reverend Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin and Doctor Samuel L. Abbot.

On motion—it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is directed to pay Twenty Dollars as a contribution from the funds of the Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1859.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest,

George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

Boston April 23, AD. 1859.

A meeting of the Standing Committee for the year 1859, was held, agreable to notice, in the vestry of the meeting house, Chauncy Street, this day at four o’clock p.m.

Present, Messrs. William Hayden, Thomas B. Wales, Otis Rich, P. Bigelow, Charles L. Hayward.

The meeting was duly organized by the unanimous choice of William Hayden Esq. for Chairman of the Committee.

[343] The Chairman nominated gentlemen for the usual Sub-committees, as follows, viz.

On Music,

Sub Committees

Messrs. Abbot, Hayward and Bigelow.

On Repairs of Building,

Messrs. Rich, Wales and Dupee.

On Sexton’s duties,

Messrs. Hayward and Wales.

which nominations were confirmed by the unanimous votes of the meeting.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq., it was

Voted That William Hayden Esq. be and hereby is authorised to grant the use of this meetinghouse, on the first Monday of June next, to the “Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company;” provided that the Organ shall be used only under direction of the Committee on Music.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest,

George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday, May 19, 1859.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the vestry in Chauncy Street, this afternoon, at four o’clock; Present; Messrs. Hayden, Wales, Abbot, Hayward and Dupee.

The Chairman read to the meeting the following communication from Doctor C. G. Putnam in relation to a mortgage held by the Church on his estate—viz.

“Boston May 16/’59

“To the Committee of the First Church

Gentlemen, I wish to pay the mortgage on my estate in Summer St.—part of which viz, $11000. is overdue—part $2000. not yet due. I presume you will have no objection to my so doing.

Very respectfully yours (signed)

C. G. Putnam.”

[344] After some conversation on this subject, on motion of Thomas B. Wales Esq., it was

Voted That the Chairman (William Hayden) and the Treasurer (Charles L. Hayward) be a Committee to take into consideration the proposal made by Doctor Putnam, with full power to act in relation thereto.

Meeting dissolved.

Attest,

George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday, December 8, 1859.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the front basement room of the Church in Chauncy Street, this afternoon, at half past three o’clock; Present, Messrs. Hayden, Abbot, Hayward, Rich, Bigelow, and Wales.

William Hayden, Esq. reported; The verdict having been confirmed by the Superior Court in favor of the Church, in their Suit against the City of Boston and the money received by the Treasurer—to wit;

Whole amount recovered including interest.

$19312.30

less Counsel fees and expenses

2312.30

leaving nett

$17000.—

as appears by account of Chandler and Shattuck, counsel in the case, which was presented by Mr. Hayden.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq. it was

Voted That the account of Messrs. Chandler and Shattuck be accepted.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq. it was

Voted That Messrs. William Hayden, C. L. Hayward and T. B. Wales confer, as a Sub-committee, with the Treasurer in regard to the investment of ($17000.) seventeen thousand dollars received this day by him.

On motion of Doct. S. L. Abbot, it was

Voted That the Clerk be and is hereby directed to call a Special Meeting of the Proprietors, to [345] be held in the vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street on Tuesday next, December 13th., at half past three o’clock in the afternoon, to hear the report of the Standing Committee concerning the suit of the Society against the City of Boston.

On motion of Doct. S. L. Abbot it was

Voted unanimously, That the Standing Committee strongly recommend to the Proprietors of the First Church the expediency and justice of presenting to Mr. William Hayden, Chairman of the Standing Committee, the sum of One thousand dollars for his valuable services in aiding the prosecution of the suit of the Society against the City of Boston, now so favorably terminated.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq., the Meeting was dissolved.

Attest,

George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, December 13, 1859.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in a front basement room of the Church in Chauncy Street, this afternoon, at three o’clock.

Present; Messrs. Hayden, Abbot, Hayward, Rich, Bigelow and Wales.

The Chairman submitted and read to the meeting a report relating to the Suit of the First Church, lately concluded, against the City of Boston.

On Motion of Otis Rich Esq. it was

Voted unanimously, That this Report be adopted and submitted to the Proprietors at their meeting, called for this afternoon.

The meeting was then dissolved.

Attest,—George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

[346] Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, December 13, 1859.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church in Boston” was held in the vestry of the Church, in Chauncy Street, at half past three o’clock p.m. pursuant to a notice duly given by order of the Standing Committee “to receive the final report of said Committee, on the subject of the recently adjusted claim against the City, for damages to the property of the Church, in the laying out of Chauncy Street.”

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and Otis Rich Esq., was chosen Moderator.

The report abovenamed, was then read to the meeting by the Chairman of the Standing Committee.

On motion of Josiah Bradlee Esq., it was

Voted That this Report be accepted and placed on record. It is here transcribed, as follows.

“First Church, Chauncy Street December 13, 1859.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church in submitting this, their final Report, on the subject of the claim of the Proprietors against the City of Boston, for damages arising from the laying out of Chauncy Street take the occasion to give some brief account of that claim, and of the Committee’s proceedings in urging it against the City.

In the years 1807 and 1808, when this Church was erected, the land heretofore known as “Chauncy Place” was laid out, by the Proprietors of this Church, as a private and quiet avenue to their Church. The “Place” extended from Summer Street through to the entire depth of the estate owned by the Church. All the necessary measures were taken, to secure the rights and ownership of the Church in this avenue and to preserve it as a retired and uninterrupted means of access to their House of Worship.

In the investigation of the history and title of this Estate, which was necessarily and minutely entered into, in prosecuting this claim against the City, the committee were not a little surprized to find how constantly and how sedulously the Church had guarded all its rights in the land which they had thus laid out as an avenue to their Meeting House—and with what care they had protected it as a private way to their worship, unannoyed by the dust [347] and the noise of a public thoroughfare. Whenever the Town or City authorities came upon these premises—to erect a Lamp, to construct a Reservoir, or for any other public purpose, it was never allowed, except under protest by this Church—and all appropriate measures were taken to preserve the legal rights of these Proprietors.

Certain incumbrances had, to be sure, been made, upon the land in Chauncy Place, by this Church—but they were always such as were not inconsistent with its use and occupation as an undisturbed avenue to the Meeting House. At the original laying out of the Place, a contract was entered into with Mr. Preble, who owned the Estate opposite to the Church, by which a right of way over Chauncy Place was granted to that Estate and for which its owner paid the Church the sum of Three thousand dollars. Subsequently, a portion of the land belonging to the Proprietors, and situated south of the Church, was sold to Mr. Gideon F. Thayer, who erected the School House now standing on that land, and to that estate also a right of way over Chauncy Place was granted. On the sale of the four houses on Summer Street, heretofore belonging to this Society, rights over Chauncy Place were, also, granted to the purchasers of those Estates. Many years since, on the petition of several highly respectable citizens then residing in the vicinity, the Proprietors of this Church consented—though very reluctantly, and after much consideration—to the opening of a foot passage way through Chauncy Place—upon the express condition that those citizens at whose request this way was granted, should never seek for a carriage way through said Place, but should give their zealous aid to the Proprietors in averting such a catastrophe.

But though they had suffered these incumbrances, from time to time, on the land in Chauncy Place, it will be observed that the Proprietors of the Church had carefully kept to themselves the fee of the land—and had granted no rights over it which were at all inconsistent with their cherished object of keeping it as a clean and quiet avenue to their House of Worship.

Several times, within the last twenty years, the Proprietors of the Church have been disturbed by applications to the City Government, from various quarters, for the opening of Chauncy Place as a public highway and such applications had been constantly and strenuously resisted by Committees of this Church, duly authorized, and the opposition to such opening had been repeatedly successful, until, at the close of the year 1855, the pressure for an open avenue through the property of the Church became so great that the Board of Alderman were induced to pass the requisite order, and open a thoroughfare and carriage way over Chauncy Place.

Soon after the property of the Church was thus taken [348] for the public use, the Standing Committee made application to the City Government—setting forth the quantity of land which had been taken, and the great damage which had otherwise been done to the Church, by this exercise of the legal authority of the City—and praying that adequate remuneration might be granted. Hearings were had before the Board of Alderman and its committees—and every effort was made, to obtain some indemnification for the damage which had been done to the property of the Church. The members of the City Government, however persistently declined to grant remuneration for the land taken, or, for any damage consequent upon the taking—alleging that the Church had already dedicated this property for a highway, and had no legal claim for damage from the City.

Failing, thus in their attempts to obtain justice from the quarter from which the injury originated, the Standing Committee, under the authority of votes passed by Proprietors of the Church, consulted and advised with counsel learned in the law. The Committee felt great reluctance to involve the Church in a law-suit with the City. So far as they knew, the First Church had never had occasion to sue, or to be sued—and they had no desire to be parties in a legal contest between the government of Boston and the very oldest of its Churches, a Church coeval with Boston itself. In order, if possible, to avoid such a necessity, their counsel, under instructions from the Committee, proposed to the Alderman to submit the whole matter to arbitration. This proposition was made repeatedly, and in different forms. The offer was made to the City Government to submit the matter to three Referees, to be chosen by themselves—with the proviso, only, that the persons so chosen should be men of known standing in the community; of good judgement and integrity—and, if there was any apprehension that there might be bias on account of religious feeling, they were at liberty to select for referees, gentlemen not of our own denomination. In fact, every offer that could be thought of, was made, to save the Church the necessity of a lawsuit with the City, to obtain its rights.

All these offers were persistently refused, by the members of the City Government—and the claim of the Church was treated in a manner which seemed to be vacillating between ridicule and contempt.

Under this position of affairs, the only alternatives presented to this Committee were, to proceed to seek redress from the City through the Courts of law, or to abandon the claim altogether. The Church has its rights—and its rights of property too—as well as individuals of the community have theirs—The committee believed that they should do less than their duty to the Proprietors, if [349] they did not proceed to take the most efficient means to enforce the claims of their constituents; and to this end, they directed their counsel to bring the matter before the proper court, at once. Being thus actually driven into Court—and having secured the services of able counsel—the Committee determined to urge the suit with all possible vigor and dispatch; and the case was soon brought to its first trial, after full and elaborate preparation. On that trial, the Jury did not agree upon a verdict. It was well ascertained, however, that eleven of the Jurors were in favor of awarding damages, to the amount of between $15000 and $16000—to the Church, one Juror dissenting. After this result was known, other attempts were made, to adjust the matter with the City Government and thus avoid another trial. Conferences were had by the counsel and the chairman of this committee, with members of the Board of Alderman. The proposition was made, to take the sum which the eleven jurors were willing to award as damages, and deduct from it one twelfth of its amount, to answer for the proportion of the dissenting Juror—and that the Church would receive the residuum (say 11/12ths of the amount) in full of its claims for damages. This proposition—reasonable as it appeared to the Committee—was summarily rejected.

After the further delay of several months, the case came up for its second trial. A full, fair and thorough investigation of the whole claim of the Church was had, upon this trial, which extended through an entire week and the Jury assessed the damages to the Church at the sum of Seventeen thousand dollars.

Upon the rendering of this verdict, various exceptions to the form of proceedings in the case were taken by the Counsel for the City, and, upon those exceptions, the case was carried up to the Supreme Court. Here, a delay of two years occurred, before the case came up for argument, on the exceptions, before that Court. The time, however, at length arrived. The case was fully argued before the Judges of the Supreme Court, every point involved was decided in favor of the Church. Judgment was ordered, on the verdict rendered in the lower court—and interest was allowed from the day of the rendering of the verdict to the day on which the money was paid from the City Treasury.

So far as the mere pecuniary consideration is concerned, it is not perhaps unfortunate that the exceptions were taken to the verdict—as while the City six per cent Stock was selling at eight or nine per cent above par, the City has been paying the Church six per cent interest for the amount of the verdict, for these two years [350] and the amount of interest, which has thus accrued has been sufficient to pay the whole expense which the Church has incurred in the prosecution of this suit against the City.

The whole amount paid to the Counsel of the Church, by the City, to be accounted for to the Church was

19140.57

The amount of fees of Counsel, and sundry expenses incurred in the suit and not chargeable to the City was

2140.57

Leaving the amount actually paid over to the Treasurer of the Church, being the exact amount of the verdict of the Jury

$17000.00

The account of fees and expenses, rendered by the Counsel employed by the Church, amounted to something over the sum above stated—but the committee succeeded in obtaining such a reduction as should leave to the Church the exact amount of the verdict rendered by the Jury.

Considering the long time that this suit has been in progress, and the great amount of service required in urging this claim—first before the Board of Aldermen, and since, before the various Courts, the committee do not think, and they trust the Proprietors will not think, the charges of the Counsel too high.

The balance of money coming to the Church, say seventeen thousand dollars was paid into the hands of the Treasurer of the Church on the 8th of December instant, and was deposited to his credit, as Treasurer in the New England Bank and measures have already been taken, for its investment in some safe securities, a sub-committee having been appointed, by the Standing Committee, to advise with the Treasurer on that subject.

The committee have been thus particular in stating the grounds of this claim of the Church against the City, and the difficulties attending its adjustment, in order that there may appear upon the record the reasons which have compelled the First Church in Boston to institute and prosecute a suit at law against the government of the City of Boston.

Before they close this Report, the committee take occasion to state to the Proprietors that, for the successful termination of this suit, they are greatly indebted to the services of Peleg W. Chandler Esq.; who was engaged as Senior Counsel in the case. In order fully to inform himself, in regard to the rights of the Church in this property, it became necessary that he should make a thorough investigation of all the titles and conveyances and that he should read the entire records of the proceedings of [351] the Proprietors of the Church, and their Committees, for the last fifty years. Believing, upon investigation, that the Church had a fair and just claim against the City, he has conducted the case with uncommon industry, zeal and fidelity—and he has argued it before the various Courts and Juries with signal ability and eloquence. Valuable services have, also, been rendered by Seth J. Thomas Esq., who has been for many years a worshipper at this Church, and who was employed as Junior counsel in the case.

In conclusion, the Committee may be permitted to congratulate the Proprietors upon so successful a termination of a litigation unwillingly entered upon; and to express their fervent hope that the First Church may never again be forced into a position so foreign to their accustomed higher and holier objects.

Respectfully submitted

In behalf of the Standing Committee,

(signed) William Hayden, Chairman.”

On motion of Josiah Bradlee Esq., it was

Voted That the Treasurer be instructed to pay to William Hayden Esq., unanimously, the sum of One thousand dollars as a compensation for sundry extra services rendered by him as Chairman of the Standing Committee of the First Church, in Chauncy Place.

The vote passed by the Standing Committee at their meeting on the 8th instant, recommending the presentation of one thousand dollars to William Hayden Esq. was then read to the meeting, by the Clerk, at their request.

On motion of Ralph Huntington Esq., the meeting was dissolved.

Attest,

George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

[352] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday, February 2, 1860.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the front basement room of the Church in Chauncy Street this afternoon at half past three o’clock;—Present. Messrs. Hayden, Abbot, Bigelow and Hayward.

The record of the last meeting of the standing committee was read to the meeting by the clerk.

A letter from our Pastor, Reverend Rufus Ellis, under date of 26th January last, addressed to William Hayden Esq. was read by him and submitted to the consideration of the meeting, asking authority “to have printed and distributed in the pews, a few pages containing our order of services, the number of the Psalm to be chanted for the day, with perhaps the ancient covenant of the Church and the list of ministers etc. as appended to our little Book of By Laws.”

On motion of Charles L. Hayward Esq. it was Voted That the Chairman be and hereby is authorised to confer with Mr. Ellis and have as many copies of the above printed as they shall deem necessary for distribution in the pews.

Mr. Hayden read and submitted another letter from the Pastor addressed to him under date of 30 January last, referring to some fifty unbound copies of the Hymn Book used in our Church, as having been stored away many years in a bookbindery, and suggesting that the parishioners be notified in order that such as need may supply themselves; also,

Expressing his desire for the introduction of the King’s Chapel Liturgy into our Church.

On motion of Charles L. Hayward Esq. it was Voted That the Chairman be and hereby is authorised to look into the condition of these printed copies of the Hymn Book and have such of them bound as he shall think best and kept to supply the wants of the congregation.

[353] On motion of Doct. S. L. Abbot, it was Voted That this Committee cordially sympathise with our Pastor in his desire to introduce the Chapel Liturgy into the services of the congregation.

Meeting adjourned,

sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Monday, April 16, 1860.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the vestry of the Church in Chauncy street this afternoon at four o’clock; Present, Messrs. Hayden, Abbot, Bigelow, Dupee, Hayward and Rich.

After some conversation respecting the assistance rendered by the Treasurer in the late Suit of the Church vs. the City, On motion of Mr. Rich,—it was

Voted That this Committee recommend for consideration at their annual meeting tomorrow, an allowance of Three hundred dollars to the Treasurer for extra services rendered by him in connexion with the suit at law by this Church vs. the City of Boston, and in investing the funds acquired by said Suit; the Chairman being requested to prepare a vote, in conformity herewith, to be offered at said meeting.

The Chairman submitted and read to the meeting a Report of the doings of the Committee during the past year, remarking that he had yet some explanatory remarks to add to it for its completion.

On motion of Mr. Rich,—it was

Voted That the Chairman is requested to complete this Report and submit the same to the Proprietors, at their meeting tomorrow.

A claim was presented from Nahum Capen Esq., of the amount of about Forty dollars, for glass broken in the windows of his building, adjacent to the Church, by snow and ice falling from the roof of the Church last winter. The Chairman [354] stated that his attention had been called to this matter at the time and he saw the broken windows. After some conversation upon the subject, it was

Voted That this claim be paid by the Treasurer.

Adjourned to meet at this place tomorrow, at 3.45 P.M.

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Adjourned Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 17, 1860.

The Committee met in the Vestry this afternoon, agreably to the adjournment from yesterday. Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Wales, Hayward, Dupee and Bigelow.

The Chairman submitted and read to the meeting a Report in full to the Proprietors, embracing the portion read by him at the meeting yesterday.

On motion, it was unanimously Voted That this Report be adopted by the Committee and submitted to the Proprietors at their forthcoming meeting.

Adjourned, Sine die;

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Annual Meeting of the Corporation. Boston April 17, 1860.

The annual meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church, in Boston, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the vestry of the meeting house in Chauncy Street, this afternoon at four o’clock; the meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and organised by the choice of J. Putnam Bradlee, Esq. for Moderator;

Prayer having been offered by Reverend Rufus Ellis, our Pastor, [355] the meeting proceeded to ballot for a Clerk for the ensuing ecclesiastical year, which resulted in the election of George O. Harris for that office, who thereupon took the requisite oath as follows;

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Suffolk S. S.

Before me, this seventeenth day

of April AD 1860, personally appeared George Oliver Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

Otis Rich

Justice of the Peace.

William Hayden Esq. submitted and read to the meeting the Annual Report of the Standing Committee. It was then

Voted That the same be accepted, recorded and placed on file; it is as follows:

“First Church, Chauncy Street April 17th 1860. The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, in Boston, submit to the Proprietors of said Church the following, as their Annual Report: It appears that, in the financial year which closed on the thirty first day of March last, the following sums of money were received, on account of this Church—namely—

The balance of money in the hands of the Treasurer at the commencement of the year

467.59

Interest:

on Mortgage C. G. Putnam $13000. one year

780.00

on Mortgage C. G. Putnam $3000. six mos.

90.00

on Mortgage Dr. Patch $7000. one year

420.00

on State Bond for $1000. six months

30.00

1320.00

Dividends:

on 40 Shares Connecticut Riv. Rail Road 6½ per cent

260.00

on 60 Shares Fitchburg Rail Road 6 months 3 per cent

180.00

on $10000. Western Rail Road Bonds 6 months 3 percent

300.00

740.00

Rents:

of Clark and Andrews for church cellar

100.00

of Littell and Company for Basement Room

100.00

of Lemon for Ditto

75.00

275.00

Pew Taxes:

whole amount collected for Taxes on Pews, within the year

2794.50

Amount carried forward

5597.09

[356]

Sale of Thirty shares in the Merchants Bank at 102¾

3082.50

Sale of certificate of Mass. State Stock for $1000

1092.50

Received of Messrs. Chandler and Shattuck, Counsel for the Church, being the balance of their account of moneys received from the City of Boston, for damages sustained by the Church, by reason of the laying out of Chauncy Street—after deducting all expenses attending the recovery of said damages

17000.00

Making the whole amount received, for account of the Church, within the year

26772.09

The following amounts have been expended, and paid out, on account of the Church, within the same year—namely—

The salary of the Pastor of the Church

3500.00

Expenses of music

1306.93

Compensation of the Sexton

315.00

Building fence on the north line of the Church land

214.65

Collecting Pew taxes and Rents $2980. at 5 percent

149.00

Fuel $167.80 Repairs furnaces $85.52 Repairs Church $33.33

286.65

Salary of Treasurer $50. Clerk $25.

75.00

Printing sermons and orders of service

85.80

Premium: Insurance $38.75 City Taxes $29.10 Water $6.

73.85

Gas and repairs of fixtures

26.25

Fitting up Society’s pews $55.30 Interest on temporary loan 13.25

68.55

Sundry incidental expenses, of small amounts

66.51

Amount of ordinary annual expenditures

6168.19

Amount of granted to the Chairman of committee for extra services

1000.00

Investments: paid for additional mortgage 3000.00 Doct. C. G. Putnam

3000.00

paid for 60 Shares Fitchburg Railroad

5975.00

paid for $10000. Six percent Bonds Western Railroad

10143.34

Making the whole amount expended, for account of the Church, within the year

26286.53

The whole amount received, within the year according to the foregoing Statement, is

26772.09

The whole amount paid out, within the year is

26286.53

leaving a balance in hand, on the first day of April, 1860—amounting to

$485.56

At a special meeting of the Proprietors of this Church, held December 13, 1859, a full Report was submitted by this Committee, and accepted by the Proprietors upon the final settlement of the controversy with the City, in relation to the laying out of Chauncy Street. As shown in that Report, the net amount received by the Church, on that account, was $17000.—Out of the sum thus received, the Proprietors [357] “granted the sum of $1000. for extra services rendered by the Chairman of this Committee—and the balance, say, $16000. has been invested, by the purchase of Ten thousand dollars six per cent Bonds of the Western Rail Road Corporation, and Sixty shares—par $100 each—in the Fitchburg Rail Road Corporation.

Within the past year, notice was given to the Standing Committee, by Doct. C. G. Putnam, of his intention to pay his notes amounting to $13000. held by this Church—as he had obtained a larger loan on the property mortgaged for their security. At the time of this notice, the subcommittee to whom it was referred, did not know of any investment which could be made, so favorable for the Church as the mortgage then held, on the property which the Church had itself conveyed and upon conferring with Doct. Putnam, it was agreed that the old mortgages should remain, and that the Church would advance him the further sum of $3000. and take a new mortgage of the same premises. This was done, and the Proprietors of the Church now hold Notes to the amount of $16000. secured by mortgages on the estate formerly sold by this Church to Doct. Putnam. In order to carry out this arrangement, the Committee directed the sale of Thirty shares, owned by the Church, in the Capital Stock of the Merchants Bank.

The property of the Proprietors of this Church, independently of the Church building and the land under and contiguous to the same and of the balance of money in the hands of the Treasurer, may now be stated, at its par value, as follows: namely;

Four notes of hand, amply secured by Mortgages of Real Estate situated within the City of Boston amounting to

23000.00

Forty shares of the Capital Stock of the Connecticut Riv. Rail Road Corporation

4000.00

Sixty shares of the Capital Stock of the Fitchburg Railroad Corporation

6000.00

Ten Certificates, of $1000 each, of Bonds of the Western Railroad Corporation, bearing six percent interest, and having twenty years to run

1000.00

Making property of the Church, actually invested and drawing interest—amounting to

$43000.00

The Committee recommend to the Proprietors that a Vote be passed, making a special grant of the sum of Three hundred dollars, to Charles L. Hayward Esq., their Treasurer, for extra services rendered by him, over and above the usual duties of his office, within the three or four years last past. Respectfully submitted,

In behalf of the Standing Committee.

(Signed) William Hayden, Chairman.”

[358] Ballots being taken for a Treasurer for the ensuing year, it was declared that Charles L. Hayward Esq. was unanimously elected for that office.

Ballots being then taken for members of the Standing Committee for the ensuing year, it was declared that the following gentlemen were unanimously elected, viz:

  • William Hayden
  • Otis Rich
  • Thomas B. Wales
  • Charles L. Hayward
  • Horace Dupee
  • Samuel L. Abbot
  • Prescott Bigelow.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq. it was Voted That the sum of three hundred dollars be allowed and paid to Charles L. Hayward for extra services performed by him since he has held the office of Treasurer of this Society.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq. it was Voted That the Standing Committee of this Society have full authority to advertise and sell any Pews for Taxes, whenever the Proprietors thereof may have become delinquent, after giving proper notice of the time and place of sale.

The Moderator nominated the following gentlemen as the Finance Committee—for the ensuing year, Joseph H. Francis, N. B. Doggett, T. C. A. Dexter, and the nomination was confirmed by the unanimous votes of the meeting.

The following gentlemen were nominated by the Moderator for a Committee on Donations for the ensuing year, Reverend Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin, Doct. Samuel L. Abbot, which nomination was fully confirmed by the votes of the meeting.

On motion,

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty Dollars as a contribution from the funds of the Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1860.

[359] Some remarks were made by gentlemen on the expediency of substituting liturgical service for the present order of services in the Church, on the Lord’s Day; on motion of Mr. Hayward, it was

Voted That this subject be referred to the Standing Committee.

On motion, the meeting adjourned,

Sine die

Attest, George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Monday, April 23, 1860.

The following members of the Standing Committee, chosen at the annual meeting of the Proprietors on Tuesday last, met in the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street, agreable to previous notice, at 4 o’clock P.M. of this day, viz. William Hayden, Otis Rich, Thomas B. Wales, Charles L. Hayward, Samuel L. Abbot and Prescott Bigelow.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and duly organised by the choice of William Hayden Esq. for Chairman.

The Chairman nominated gentlemen for the usual sub-committees, as follows, viz.

  • On Music, Messrs. Abbot, Hayward and Bigelow;
  • On Repairs of Buildings, Messrs. Rich, Wales and Dupee;
  • On Sexton’s duties, Messrs. Hayward and Wales;

which nominations were confirmed by the unanimous votes of the meeting.

[360] On motion, it was

Voted That an invitation be extended to the Reverend Doct. Gannet’s Society, to unite with us in worship for such part of the ensuing summer as may be agreable to that Society.

Adjourned,

Sine die,

Attest,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Boston Friday, June 22, 1860. A meeting of the Standing Committee was called by order of the Chairman to meet at the Vestry of the Church half past three o’clock this day.

A quorum not being present, the meeting was adjourned to next Friday, the 29th instant, at the same hour and place.

George O Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Friday, June 29, 1860.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this afternoon as adjourned. Present, Messrs. William Hayden, Samuel L. Abbot, Prescott Bigelow, Charles L. Hayward, Otis Rich and Thomas B. Wales.

A communication from our Pastor was read before the committee, asking their attention to a want of more light and air in the Church.

After some conversation on this subject, On motion of Otis Rich Esq., it was

Voted That the Chairman be requested to consult with Mr. Thorndike on the most feasible plan for the admission of more light and air into the Church and obtain from him an estimate of the expense thereof.

[361] The Chairman reported, verbally, on the subject which had been referred to him, relating to the disposition of a number of copies of the “Christian Psalter” in sheets, a long time on hand, belonging to the First Church—that he had sold the same, to the number of 48 copies, to Mr. William P. Lunt, for 31 cents per copy—that the sum of $5. had been allowed Mr. Guardinier, for custody of the same—and that the balance—say $9.88 had been paid over to the Treasurer.

The Chairman also reported that application was made to him by a Committee of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company for the use of the Church, on the first Monday of the present month of June, for their usual annual celebration; and that, as there was no other business to lay before the Committee, upon consultation, with individual members, he had granted the use of the Church, in compliance with the request, without calling a meeting of the Committee.

On motion of Doct. Abbot it was

Voted That the Clerk be directed to notify all proprietors of pews on which taxes may be in arrears on the first day of October next, that in pursuance of authority given the Standing Committee by the Proprietors of this Church, at their last annual meeting, if said taxes are not paid previous to————said pews will be advertised and sold.

Adjourned, sine die,

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston August 25, 1860.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this afternoon, at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street, at half past three o’clock agreable to previous notice. Present, Messrs. William Hayden, Prescott Bigelow, Horace Dupee, and Thomas B. Wales.

The Chairman reported, verbally, on the subject of having more light in the Church, That he had consulted with Mr. Thorndike, as directed at the meeting of the 29 June last, who said he thought more light could be introduced at an expense not exceeding Five hundred dollars.

After some conversation about it, it was

Voted That the whole subject be laid on the table.

[362] A communication from Nahum Capen was read to the meeting, by the Chairman, asking the Proprietors of the Church to lease him two feet, in width, of land in the passage way in rear of the Post Office building adjoining.

On motion of T. B. Wales Esq. it was

Voted That the Clerk be and hereby is directed to address Mr. Capen, in reply and say that his communication had been submitted to the Standing Committee and they declined to comply with his request.

Adjourned, sine die,

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

P. S. The letter, referred to above, is on file, with the reply to it.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston February 16, 1861.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the Church on the 27th January last, immediately after morning service. Present: Messrs. William Hayden, Thos. B. Wales, and S. L. Abbot.

The Committee had previously caused plain glass to be substituted for colored glass, in two of the windows in the Church, in consequence of continued complaints having been made to them that there was a deficiency of light; and the question was put by the Chairman, Whether the result appeared favorable and if they would authorize the same change to be made in all the lower windows? It was answered in the affirmative by all present and the other members of the Committee, Messrs. Hayward, Rich, Dupee and Bigelow have since given their approval of the measure, and it has been completed.

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

[363] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 16, 1861.

The Committee met in the Vestry of the Church at 3 o’clock P.M. agreably to previous notice. Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Hayward, Dupee and Bigelow.

The Chairman submitted and read to the meeting the Annual Report of the Committee to the Proprietors:

On motion, it was unanimously Voted That this Report be adopted by the Committee and submitted to the Proprietors at their forthcoming meeting.

Adjourned, sine die,

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston April 16, 1861.

The annual meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the vestry of the Churchin Chauncy Street, this afternoon at four o’clock; the meeting was called to order by the Clerk and organised by the choice of J. Putnam Bradlee Esq. for Moderator;

Berkeley Street Meeting House

Dedicated December 10, 1868

Prayer having been offered by Reverend Rufus Ellis, our Pastor; the meeting proceeded to ballot for a Clerk for the ensuing year, which resulted in the election of George O. Harris for that office, who then and there took the requisite oath, as follows, (on the next page),

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Before me, this sixteenth day of

[364] Suffolk S S.

April AD 1861. personally appeared George Oliver Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

Otis Rich

Justice of (the) Peace.

William Hayden Esq. submitted and read to the meeting the Annual Report of the Standing Committee; it was then

Voted That the same be accepted, recorded and placed on file; it is as follows,

“First Church Chauncy Place April 16, 1861.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church submit to the Proprietors, at their Annual meeting this day, the following Report upon the prudential affairs of the Corporation, for the last year:—

Within the financial year, which closed on the 31st day of March last, the following sums of money have been received on account of the Proprietors, namely—

The balance in the hands of the Treasurer, at the commencement of the year

485.56

Interest on Mortgage C. G. Putnam $16000. one year $960.

on Mortgage F. F. Patch

$7000.—”—$420.

on Western Railroad Bonds

$10000.—”—$600.

Dividends on Stock in Fitchburg R Rd.

$6000.—”—$360.

on Stock in Connecticut River R Rd

$4000.—”—$280.

making the whole amount from Interests and Dividends

2620.00

Rents of Clarke and Andrews for cellar one year

$100.

of Littell and Co. for basement room

100.

of Lemon for ditto

100.

making the whole amount from rents

300.00

Pew Taxes—whole amount collected for Taxes of Pews for the year

2921.82

Received on account of the Principal of a Note and Mortgage of Dr. F. F. Patch

2500.00

Making the whole amount received for account of the Proprietors, within the year

$8827.38

[365] It also appears that the following amounts have been expended and paid out, on account of the Proprietors, within the year—namely—

The salary of the Pastor of the Church

3500.00

Expenses of Music

1363.22

Compensation of the Sexton

315.00

Allowance to the Treasurer, for extra services, granted by vote of the Proprietors.

300.00

Commission for collecting Taxes and Rents $3336. at 5 per cent

166.76

Fuel, $152.19 Repairs of Building $137.30 Insurance $51.25

340.74

Repairs of Stoves $47.50 Rent of Piano $40.00 City Taxes 27.90

115.40

Salary of Treasurer $50.00 Salary of Clerk $25.00 Books and Printing 19.98

94.98

Interest paid on temporary loan 15.25 Gas 11.13 Water 6.00

32.38

Repairs Gas fixtures 8.33 and for sundry items of small amounts

71.87

80.20

making the aggregate of (annual) expenses, for the year,

6308.68

And there was paid out, as a re-investment of Capital, for 25 Shares of Stock in the Fitchburg Railroad, at 101½

2537.50

Making the whole amount of actual payments from the Treasury, within the year

8846.18

The whole amount of payments made on account of the Proprietors, within the year, as above stated, is

8846.18

And the whole amount of receipts, within the same time, is

8827.38

Leaving a balance due the Treasurer, on the first day of April, instant, amounting to

$18.80

Within the last financial year, the sum of $2500.—has been paid in, on account of a note and mortgage for $7000.—

held against Dr. F. F. Patch—and the same amount has been re-invested by the purchase of 25 Shares of the Stock of the Fitchburg Railroad. This is the only change that has taken place in the invested property of the Proprietors of the Church, within the year—and that property now stands as follows—namely:

Three notes of Hand of Dr. C. G. Putnam, amounting to $16000. and one note of Dr. F. F. Patch, for $4500. all amply secured by mortgage of Real Estate

20500.00

Ten Certificates, of $1000. each of Bonds of the Western Railroad Corporation, bearing 6 percent interest, having twenty years to run

10000.00

Eighty five Shares of the Capital Stock of the Fitchburg Railroad Corporation—par value—

8500.00

Forty Shares of the Capital Stock of the Connecticut River Railroad Corporation—par value—

4000.00

Making the actual invested property of the Proprietors amount to

$43000.00

All which is respectfully submitted

For the Committee

(Signed) William Hayden, Chairman.”

[366] The Finance Committee reported to the meeting;

That they had examined the Annual Account of the Treasurer, for the year ending the 1st of April current, and found the vouchers and account correct; that they had also examined the securities in his hands, the property of the Church as set forth in his account, and found them correct.

Ballots being then taken for a Treasurer for the ensuing year, it was declared that Charles L. Hayward Esq. was unanimously elected for that office.

Ballots being then taken for members of the Standing Committee for the ensuing year, it was declared that the following gentlemen were unanimously elected, viz. William Hayden, Otis Rich, Thomas B. Wales, Charles L. Hayward, Horace Dupee, Samuel L. Abbot, Prescott Bigelow.

The Moderator appointed the following gentlemen as the Finance Committee, for the ensuing year, viz. Joseph H. Francis, N. B. Doggett, T. C. A. Dexter, and this appointment was confirmed unanimously by the meeting.

The Moderator appointed the following gentlemen as the Committee on Donations, for the ensuing year, viz. Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin, Samuel L. Abbot and this appointment was fully confirmed by the meeting.

On motion, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty dollars as a contribution from the funds of the corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1861.

A copy of a Vote of thanks passed by the Proprietors and Congregation of the Federal Street Society for the invitation, extended to them last summer, to unite with us [367] in public worship, was laid before the meeting.

On Motion of O. Rich Esq. it was

Voted That the same be read to the meeting by the Clerk and placed on file; which was accordingly done.

A letter, was laid before the meeting, from Honorable Charles Francis Adams to the Standing Committee, offering to sell to them his pew (No. 130.) in the Church; also the answer thereto by the Standing Committee, which on Motion of O. Rich Esq. was approved by the Votes of the Meeting.

On motion, the meeting adjourned, sine die,

George O. Harris

Clerk of the Corporation.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday, May 2, 1861.

The following members of the Standing Committee chosen at the Annual meeting of the Proprietors on the 16th April met in the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street, agreable to previous notice, at half past three p.m. of this day, viz. William Hayden, Thomas B. Wales, Samuel L. Abbot and Prescott Bigelow.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and duly organised by the choice of William Hayden Esq. for Chairman.

The Chairman, with the unanimous consent of the meeting, appointed gentlemen to serve as members of the usual Sub committees, as follows, viz.

  • on Music
    • Messrs. Abbot, Hayward and Bigelow.
  • on Repairs of Buildings
    • Messrs. Rich, Wales and Dupee.
  • on Sexton’s duties
    • Messrs. Hayward and Wales.

[368] On motion, it was

Voted That the Chairman be and hereby is authorised to invite the Reverend Doct. Gannett’s society to unite with us in worship for such part of the ensuing summer as may be agreable to that Society.

Adjourned, sine die

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Friday, October 25, 1861.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was holden at the vestry of the Church, in Chauncy Street, at halfpast three o’clock this afternoon; agreably to previous notice, all the members thereof being present.

The Chairman, after calling to order, referred to the Vote passed at the past meeting of the committee, and read to the meeting a copy of the invitation he had extended to the Federal Street Society in accordance therewith, also the answer received to this invitation accepting the same.

A communication from C. M. Cotting, Clerk of Christ’s Church, Longwood was read to the meeting by the Chairman and after some conversation was referred to the Chairman to consult with our Pastor and report concerning a reply to the same.

The Chairman read to the meeting a note from our Pastor, asking liberty to make use of the front basement room for a free school for the poor etc.

The Chairman was requested, in company with Doct. S. L. Abbot, to confer with Mr. Ellis and report at the next meeting.

The Chairman read to the meeting, a notice sent by him on the 3d Sept. last to George H. Kuhn calling his attention to a trespass upon the property of the First Church adjacent to the building now occupied by the Post Office; with Mr. Kuhn’s answer thereto, explaining that it is an excavation for the purpose of ventilation, disclaiming any intention to acquire any right adverse to the Church and asking that it may be permitted to remain. The Committee, after viewing the premises defer taking any action in the matter for the present.

Adjourned,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[369] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Wednesday, October 30, 1861.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was holden at the vestry of the Church at half past three o’clock this P.M.

The gentlemen, to whom the subject was referred at the last meeting, stated that they learned from Mr. Ellis (our Pastor) that benevolent ladies of the Society propose, if they can have the use of a basement room, to give their time for a couple of hours each afternoon in the instruction, in writing, of poor young lads, especially “newsboys,” who are restricted by their occupation from attending the Public Schools; it is proposed as an experiment in doing good, the success of which being doubtful, it is desirable to make the necessary expenses attending it as small as possible.

Voted That the Committee accede to the request of Mrs. Ellis for the use of one of the basement rooms under the Church for the purposes above stated.

Adjourned, sine die,

Attest George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Sunday, February 23, 1862.

The committee met in the vestry of the Church immediately after morning service.

A letter from our Pastor, addressed to the Chairman, relating to Books containing our Order of services on the Lords Day, was read to the meeting.

After some conversation on the subject; it was

Voted That the Chairman in consultation with our Pastor be authorised and requested to cause to be printed 500 copies of a small book containing our order of services; in accordance with the suggestion in the letter abovementioned.

Adjourned, sine die,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[370] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 15, 1862.

The Standing Committee held a meeting at the vestry in Chauncy Street at 3 o’clock this afternoon in accordance with previous notice; Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Hayward and Bigelow.

The Chairman submitted and read to the meeting a Report from the Standing Committee to the Proprietors, which had been prepared by him.

On motion, it was unanimously,

Voted That said Report be adopted by this Committee and submitted to the Proprietors at their forthcoming meeting.

The Chairman read to the meeting a copy of a note addressed by him to Rev. E. S. Gannett, requesting, for publication, a copy of his discourse delivered on the morning of Sunday December 8, 1861, in this Church, on the occasion of the termination of the joint occupancy of this Church with us, for religious worship, by the “Federal Street Society,” during the building of their new church on Arlington Street.

The Chairman also read to the meeting Mr. Gannett’s reply to the same, “desiring to withold his manuscript from further use.”

The Committee concurred in the action taken by their Chairman and directed the papers to be placed on file.

The meeting adjourned.

“Sine die”

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[371] Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston April 15, 1862.

The annual meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church” in this city, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street this afternoon at four o’clock; the meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and organised by the choice of Otis Rich Esq. for Moderator;

Prayer having been offered by Reverend Rufus Ellis, our Pastor,

The Meeting proceeded to ballot for a Clerk for the ensuing year which resulted in the election, by a unanimous vote, of

George O. Harris for that office, who then and there took the requisite oath, as follows;

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Suffolk S.S.

Before me, this fifteenth day of

April AD. 1862 personally appeared George Oliver Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the proprietors of the First Church in Boston and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

Otis Rich, Justice of the Peace.

William Hayden Esq., Chairman of the Standing Committee, being called upon, submitted and read to the meeting the Report of the Standing Committee.

[372] It was then Voted That the Annual Report of the Standing Committee, as read by Mr. Hayden, be accepted, recorded and placed on file. The following is a copy thereof, viz.

“First Church—Chauncy Street

April 15. 1862.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church respectfully submit, to this annual meeting, the following Report, in relation to the financial affairs of the Corporation, for the financial year which terminated on the 31st day of March ultimo.

Within that year there were received, on account of the Proprietors, the following sums of money viz.

Interest on Mortgage C. G. Putnam $16000. one year

960.00

on Mortgage F. F. Patch $4500. one year

270.00

on Western Railroad Bonds $10000. one year

600.00

Dividends on Stock Fitchburg R Road $8500. one year

510.00

on Stock Connecticut River R Road $4000. one year

240.00

Amount of receipts for Interest and Dividends

$2580.00

Rents; of Clark and Andrews for cellar one year

100.—

of Lemon for basement room

100.—

of Littell and Company

75.—

Amount received for Rents

$275.00

Pew Taxes—amount received for taxes on Pews within the year

$2432.50

Received on account of the principal of a Note and Mortgage of Doct. F. F. Patch

$3000.00

Making the whole amount received for account of the Proprietors, within the year

$8287.50

Within the same year, there have been expended, and paid out, the following sums of money—viz:

Paid the balance due the Treasurer, at the commencement of the financial year—as per last Annual Report

18.80

Salary of the Pastor of the Church

3500.00

Expenses of Music

1452.78

Compensation of the Sexton

282.50

For a new Furnace, and repairs furnaces

197.00

Piano forte for Vestry

150.00

Commission for collecting taxes and rents

129.94

repairs of building

123.82

Fuel $109.46 Interest on money borrowed $64.05

173.51

Treasurer’s salary $50. Clerk’s salary $25. Premium Insurance $45.

120.00

Gas $32.00 City Tax $26.70 Contribution to Unitarian festival $20.

78.71

Amount carried forward

6227.06

[373] Amount brought forward

$6227.06

Water $6. Books $3. sundry small expenses for cleaning Church etc. $63.40

72.40

Making the aggregate of annual expenses for the year

6299.46

and there was paid out, as a re-investment of Capital, for $1500. United States Bonds at 93¼ percent

1398.75

Making the whole amount of payments from the Treasurer for the year

$7698.21

By the foregoing statement, it appears that there was received by the Treasurer, for account of the Proprietors, within the year, the sum of

$8287.50

And that there was paid out, by the Treasurer, on the same account, within the same year, the sum of

$7698.21

Leaving a balance in the hands of the Treasurer, at the credit of the Proprietors, on the 1st instant, amounting to

$589.29

Within the last year, the sum of $3000. has been paid in on account of the principal sum of a note and mortgage held by the Proprietors—and $1500. of United States Bonds have been purchased for their account—making a reduction of the property, to the amount of $1500.—

The personal property now stands as follows, viz.

Three notes of hand of Doct. C. G. Putnam, amounting to $16000. and one Note of Doct. F. F. Patch, for $1500. all amply secured by mortgage of Real Estate

17500.00

Ten Certificates of $1000. each, of Bonds of the Western road Corporation, at 6 per cent interest

10000.00

Eighty five Shares of Stock in the Fitchburg Railroad Corporation par value

8500.00

Forty shares of the Capital Stock of the Connecticut River Railroad Company—par value

4000.00

Six per cent Bonds of the United States Government payable in 1881.—par value

1500.00

Making the actual invested property of the Proprietors amount to

$41500.00

The Committee regret that there should have been any diminution of the invested property of the Proprietors, but this was utterly unavoidable as there was no money in the Treasury, at the commencement of the financial year, and the annual income was not sufficient to meet the expenditures. Previously to the payment of a portion of one of the mortgage notes, as mentioned in the preceding statement, the Treasurer was under the necessity of borrowing money, on interest, to meet the ordinary expenses—and it was not deemed expedient to re-invest the whole of the money paid in, [374] while there was an existing debt which ought to be paid.

Various suggestions and complaints have been made to members of this Committee, in regard to the present condition of the Church building. Its internal appearance is complained of, by some of the Proprietors—and by some who are not Proprietors—as dark, gloomy and distasteful. It is suggested, that many persons who might be disposed to join us, by purchasing or hiring some of our vacant pews—and who might be well satisfied with such association, in other respects are deterred from doing so, by the sombre and forbidding aspect and atmosphere of our place of worship. Whether the State of the Church finances, or the general state of surrounding affairs, are such as to warrant any considerable outlay upon the building at the present time, is left to the Proprietors to determine. As these complaints have been made, the Committee do not wish to appear entirely regardless of them—and therefore, submit the subject to such action as the judgement of the Proprietors may see fit to take.

Respectfully submitted, in behalf of the Committee.

(signed) William Hayden, Chairman.”

The Treasurer submitted his Account for the past year, the several items of which he stated were embodied in the Report of the Standing Committee, which has just been read to the meeting. Appended thereunto was a certificate from the Finance Committee declaring that they had examined said account and found it correct as to vouchers and addition also; that the Treasurer had shown them the “Securities” belonging to the “First Church” in his possession, as detailed in the foregoing Report of the Standing Committee.

On motion, It was Voted That the Treasurer’s Account be accepted and placed on file. Ballots being then taken for a Treasurer for the ensuing year, it was found and declared that Charles L. Hayward Esq. was unanimously elected for that office.

Ballots being then taken for a Standing Committee for the year ensuing, it was found and declared that the following gentlemen were unanimously elected, receiving each 12 votes.

[375] Messrs.

William Hayden

Standing. Committee.

Otis Rich

Thomas B. Wales

Charles L. Hayward

Horace Dupee

Samuel L. Abbott

Prescott Bigelow

The Moderator appointed the following gentlemen as the Finance Committee for the ensuing year, viz: Messrs. Joseph H. Francis, N. B. Doggett, T. C. A. Dexter; which appointment was confirmed by the unanimous vote of the meeting.

The Moderator then appointed the following gentlemen as the Committee on Donations for the ensuing year, viz: Messrs. Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin, Samuel L. Abbot; which appointment was confirmed by the unanimous vote of the meeting.

On motion, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty dollars as a contribution, from the funds of this Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1862.

Remarks were made by several gentlemen on the subject of alterations and repairs in the interior of the Church building, alluded to in the Report of the Standing Committee, but without taking any action thereon,

On motion the

Meeting adjourned, “Sine die”.———

Attest, George O. Harris,

Clerk of the Corporation.

[376] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Friday, April 18, 1862.

The following members of the Standing Committee, chosen at the Annual meeting of the Proprietors on the 15th instant, met at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street at 3½ o’clock this afternoon for organisation, in compliance with a notice from the Clerk to the several members thereof, viz:

Messrs. William Hayden, Thomas B. Wales, Samuel L. Abbot, Horace Dupee, and Prescott Bigelow.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk and duly organised by the choice of William Hayden Esq. for Chairman.

The Chairman with the unanimous approval of the meeting appointed gentlemen to serve as members of usual sub-committees—as follows, viz.

  • on Music,
    • Messrs. Abbot, Hayward and Bigelow.
  • on Repairs of Buildings,
    • Messrs. Rich, Wales and Dupee.
  • on Sextons duties,
    • Messrs. Hayward and Wales.

With reference to a Vote of the Committee passed on the 23d February last, the Chairman stated that copies of the “Service book,” mentioned therein, were printed and would be ready for use in a few days, and it was desirable for the Committee to give some directions for their distribution.

On motion of Doct. Abbot, it was

Voted That a printed notice shall be placed in each proprietor’s pew, with a copy of the Book for examination, stating that the sexton will call upon them to ascertain the number of Books that may be wanted by each, at the cost price of 36 cents per copy.

Our Pastor, being present at this time, charged himself with the [377] execution of this vote.

The meeting adjourned “Sine die.”

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, June 3, 1862.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day at the Vestry at half past three o’clock p.m. agreable to previous notice. Present, Messrs. Hayden, Rich, Dupee and Bigelow.

The Chairman stated to the meeting that the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company held their Anniversary services in the First Church, as usual, on leave informally granted by him.

A communication from the Chairman of the Prudential Committee of the Arlington Street (late Federal St.) Society was read to the meeting inviting the Congregation of the First Church to unite with them during the ensuing summer in worship at their new building on Arlington St.

On motion of Mr. Rich,

Voted That this invitation be thankfully accepted if it should be necessary, by reason of repairs or otherwise, for this Society to temporarily close their House of worship.

Voted That the Chairman be requested to communicate this acceptance in writing to the Prudential Committee of the Arlington St. Church.

The attention of the Committee having been of late, frequently called to the faded and discolored appearance of the paint on the inside walls of the Church; the Chairman, after examination of the same, was requested to advise with a painter as to the practicability of repairing it, or painting it over anew, the cost, etc.

Adjourned, Sine die

Attest—George O. Harris, Clerk.

[378] Boston Sunday, June 22, 1862.

At an informal meeting of the Standing Committee, held this day, immediately after morning services, in the Vestry. The Chairman was requested to invite the Congregation worshipping at King’s Chapel to unite with this society in worship at our Church in Chauncy Street during the few weeks for which their Chapel is to be closed this summer.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, December 9, 1862.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy St. at half past three o’clock p.m. agreable to previous notice.

Present; Messrs. Hayden, Rich and Bigelow.

The Chairman stated to the meeting, that it had been represented to him by our Pastor that the accommodations for our Sunday School were insufficient.

The Committee, after examining the premises,

Voted That communication be opened between the Vestry and the basement room adjoining it, by causing a door to be placed in the partition.

Voted That permission is hereby given to our Pastor to cause the Church to be decorated for religious services on Christmas Eve provided, the same is done without expense to this Committee.

C. L. Hayward Esq., a member of the Committee, though not present at this meeting, on being made acquainted with the above votes gave his assent thereto.

Adjourned, sine die,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[379] On the Tenth day of December 1862, departed this life, Deacon James Hiller Foster18 at the advanced age of 89 years; having been a Deacon of this Church since the 5th day of March 1815; a period of over forty-seven years.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 21, 1863.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day at the vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street at half past three o’clock P.M.

Present; Messrs. Hayden, Wales, Hayward, Dupee, and Bigelow.

The annual Report of the Standing Committee was read to the Meeting by the Chairman—when it was

Voted That said Report be adopted and the Chairman be requested to submit the same to the meeting of the Proprietors now about to be held here.

The Chairman read to the meeting the invitation of the Committee, through him, to the worshippers of King’s Chapel to unite with the First Church during the time their church should be closed the past summer. Also, his answer to a communication from the Prudential Committee of the Arlington Street Church in accordance with a vote of this Committee passed on the 3d June last; all which was approved by the meeting and directed to be placed on file.

The meeting adjourned, sine die,

Attest George O. Harris, Clerk.

[380] Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston April 21, 1863.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church” in this city, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the vestry of the Church in Chauncy St. this afternoon at four o’clock. The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and organised by the choice of Reverend N. L. Frothingham D.D. for Moderator;

Prayer having been offered by Reverend Rufus Ellis our Pastor, The meeting proceeded to ballot for a Clerk for the ensuing years, which resulted in the election, by a unanimous vote of George O. Harris for that office, who then and there took the requisite oath, as follows;

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Suffolk S.S.

Before me, this twenty first day

of April AD. 1863, personally appeared George O. Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the proprietors of the First Church, in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

G. W. Messenger Justice of the Peace.

William Hayden Esq. Chairman of the Standing Committee, being called by the Moderator submitted and read to the Meeting the Annual Report of the Standing Committee.

[381] On motion, it was then

Voted That the Annual Report of the Standing Committee as read to the meeting by their Chairman be accepted, recorded and placed on file.

The following is a copy thereof, to wit;

“First Church Chauncy Street

April 21, 1863.

The Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church, in Boston, respectfully submit to the Proprietors at this their Annual Meeting—the following Report upon their financial affairs, for the financial year which terminated on the 31st March, ultimo.

Within that year, there were received, from various sources, the following sums of money viz.

The balance in the hands of the Treasurer April 1st 1862.

589.29

Interest on the three mortgage notes of Dr. C. G. Putnam for $16000. at 6 per cent one year

960.00

Interest on Mortgage Note of Dr. Patch $1500. at 6 per cent

90.00

Interest on Western Railroad Bonds $10000. at 6 per cent $600. less U. States tax $18.

582.00

Dividend on 85 Shares Fitchburg Railroad Stock $8500. at 6 per cent

510.00

Dividend on 40 Shares Connecticut River Railroad Stock $4000. at 6 per cent

240.00

Coupons on $2000. U. States Bonds $69.75 add prem. received for gold 53% 36.97

106.72

Making the Income from Interest and Dividends

2488.72

Of Clarke and Andrews for rent of cellar under the Church

100.00

Of Lemon for rent of basement room

25.00

Making the income from rents

125.00

Amount received for taxes on Pews within the year

2518.75

Sale of 167 Service Books, within the year, at 40 cts.

66.80

Net sales of $1500. United States Bonds

1491.25

Amount received on account of the principal of Doct. Putnam’s notes

5000.00

Amount received balance of Doct. Patch’s note

1500.00

Making the whole amount received, on account of the Proprietors of the Church, within the financial year.

$13779.81

[382] “Within the same year, there were expended and paid out, on account of the Proprietors, the following sums of money, viz:

For Salary of the Rev. Pastor of the Church

3500.00

For Music—including expense of arranging Chants and Hymns for the new service of music for funeral of Rev. Chaplain Fuller19

1633.00

For Repairs of Building—including painting the interior walls of the Church, and fitting up one of the basement rooms

309.39

For Salary of the Sexton

250.00

For printing including the printing of 500 copies of the new Service Book

162.63

For fuel

156.00

For Salaries of Treasurer and Clerk

75.00

For premium of insurance on the Building

45.00

For repairs of furnaces $26.75 Unitarian Festival $20.

46.75

For City tax $10.50 Gas $6.75 Water $6

23.25

For Collecting taxes and rents $2670.75 at 5 per cent

133.53

For sundry small incidental expenses within the year

73.35

Making the expenses of the Church within the year

6407.90

In addition to the foregoing expenditures, there have been paid out, for the purchase of Stocks, the following sums, viz:

for one Certificate U. S. Coupon Stock of 1881 $500. at 104¼%

521.25

one Certificate U. S. 7 3/10 Stock $500 104¼%

528.55

one Certificate U. S. 7 3/10 Stock 1000. 3% and int.

1050.20

one Certificate U. S. 5–20 Stock 1000. 1¼ and int.

1036.17

United States Coupon Stock of 1881. 2500.5¼%

2631.25

United States Coupon Stock of 1881. 1000. 5 percent

1050.00

Making the whole amount paid for Investments in Stocks

6817.42

and making the aggregate of payments, within the financial year

13225.32

It appears by the foregoing statement, that there was received by the Treasurer, within the last financial year, the sum of

13779.81

And that there was paid out, by him within the same year, the sum of

13225.32

Leaving in the hands of the Treasurer, on the first day of April 1863, at the credit of the Proprietors of this Church, a balance amounting to

$554.49”

[383] “The invested personal property of the Proprietors of this Church now stands as follows—viz:

Three notes of hand of Doct. C. G. Putnam, secured by mortgage on Real Estate in Summer St. amounting to

11000.00

Bonds of the Western Railroad Corporation at 6 per cent interest 10 of $1000. in par value

10000.00

Eighty five Shares of Stock in the Fitchburg Railroad Corporation par value

8500.00

Forty Shares in the Connecticut Riv. R Road Corporation par

4000.00

Bonds of the U. States Government, payable in 1881. at 6 per cent interest

4000.00

1000. and 500.

Two Certificates U. S. Stock at 7 3/10th per cent interest

1500.00

One Certificate U. S. 5–20 Stock at 6 per cent interest

1000.00

Making the actual invested personal property of the Proprietors, at its par value

$40000.00

All which is respectfully submitted,

In behalf of the Committee,

William Hayden, Chairman.

The Treasurer submitted his account for the past year; appended thereunto was a certificate by the Finance Committee declaring that they had examined the same and found it to be correct and have also seen the “Securities” corresponding to the list presented by the Treasurer.

On motion, it was

Voted That the Treasurer’s account be accepted and placed on file.

The Treasurer here stated to the meeting his unwillingness to be again considered as a candidate for that office.

Ballots being then taken for a Treasurer for the ensuing year, it was ascertained and declared that George W. Messinger received 10 votes and was unanimously elected.

On motion of G. W. Messinger Esq. it was

Voted That the thanks of this meeting be tendered to our late Treasurer, Mr. Charles L. Hayward for his faithful and efficient services during the time he held that office.

[384] William Hayden Esq. rose and stated to the meeting that he declined serving any longer as a member of their Standing Committee.

Ballots being then taken for a Standing Committee for the year ensuing it was ascertained and declared that the following gentlemen were unanimously elected; having received 10 votes each. to wit.

  • Messrs. Thomas B. Wales
  • Otis Rich
  • Charles L. Hayward
  • Horace Dupee
  • Samuel L. Abbot
  • Prescott Bigelow (deceased Oct ’63)
  • George W. Messinger

On motion of Thomas B. Wales Esq. it was

Voted That the sum of Three hundred dollars be, and the same is hereby granted to William Hayden as a slight testimonial of the sense which the Proprietors of this Church entertain of the value of the zealous and faithful services which he has rendered to the Proprietors in the various offices which he has held for many years.

The Moderator then appointed the following gentlemen as the Finance Committee—for the ensuing year viz: Messrs. N. B. Doggett, T. C. A. Dexter, Samuel H. Gookin, which appointment was confirmed by a hand vote of the meeting.

The Moderator appointed the following gentlemen as the Committee on Donations—for the ensuing year viz: Messrs. Rev. Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin, Samuel L. Abbot, which nominations were confirmed by a hand vote of the meeting.

[385] On motion it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty Dollars as a contribution from the funds of this Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1863.

On motion of Chas. L. Hayward Esq.

The meeting adjourned, Sine die;

Attest, George O. Harris

Clerk of the Corporation

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Saturday, April 25, 1863.

The several members of the Standing Committee having been duly notified to meet at the Vestry in Chauncy Street at ½ past 3 o’clock P.M. and a quorum not being present at that time and place, the meeting was adjourned by the Clerk to meet at the Office of Charles L. Hayward Esq. No 20 Congress St. at 10 o’clock A.M. Tuesday. April 28th.

Attest George O. Harris, Clerk.

Adjournment.

Boston April 28, 1863. At the Office of Charles L. Hayward at 10 o’clock A.M. A quorum not being present, the meeting was further adjourned by the Clerk and written notices sent to the members to meet at the same place tomorrow (Wednesday) forenoon at ½ past nine o’clock.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[386] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Wednesday, April 29, 1863.

A meeting of the Committee, adjourned from the 28th instant, was held at the Office of Charles L. Hayward Esquire at ½ past 9 o’clock this morning, agreable to previous notice.

Present, Messrs. Thomas B. Wales, Otis Rich, Charles L. Hayward, Prescott Bigelow and George W. Messinger.

The meeting was called to order by Clerk, and duly organised by the choice of Thomas B. Wales, Esq.; for Chairman.

The Chairman, with the unanimous approval of the meeting, appointed gentlemen to serve on the usual sub committees, as follows, viz.

  • On Music, Messrs. Abbot, Bigelow and Messinger.
  • On Repairs, Messrs. Rich, Dupee and Hayward.
  • On Sextons Duties, Messrs. Wales and Messinger.

On motion, it was

Voted That Messrs. Wales and Messinger be a Committee authorised to employ William Hayden to search for, and if possible obtain and deliver to this Committee, the old Book or Books containing records of the deeds of the pews in the First Church, and that the expense therefor shall not exceed fifty dollars in all.

Adjourned. Sine die,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[387] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, October 20, 1863.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the vestry, in Chauncey Street, at half past twelve o’clock, agreable to previous notice.

Present, Messrs. Otis Rich, Horace Dupee, Samuel L. Abbot, and George W. Messinger.

The Chairman (Thomas B. Wales Esq.) being absent from town—On motion of Mr. Rich, George W. Messinger Esq. was chosen Chairman, pro tem.

The decease of Prescott Bigelow Esquire20 was announced to the Committee by Doct. Abbott, who offered the following Resolutions which, On motion of Mr. Rich were unanimously adopted.

Resolved That the Standing Committee of the First Church, by the recent decease of Mr. Prescott Bigelow, are called to mourn the loss of a friend and associate endeared to them in no common manner, by the longstanding and intimate relation which has existed between them.

Resolved That the Committee wish to put upon record an expression of their high appreciation of the great moral worth of their departed friend, his kindness of heart and purity of character as well as the unfailing courtesey and gentleness of his manners.

Resolved That while we are deeply impressed by the suddenness of our friend’s departure, we receive it in humility as a fresh lesson of the frailty of our mortal lives, and an added motive for the sincere sympathy with which we are drawn to those, to whom it brings the sundering of the closest and tenderest ties of affection.

[388] Resolved That this expression of our heartfelt sympathy we tender to the widow and honored father of our departed friend, commending them to the merciful Father of us all, who does not willingly afflict any of his children.

Resolved That a copy of these resolutions be entered on the records of the Standing Committee of the First Church and be communicated to the nearest friends of our deceased brother.

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Clerk be requested to hand a copy of the foregoing Resolutions to one of the City newspapers for publishment.

Which was accordingly done and they appeared in the “Transcript” of that evening.

The meeting adjourned. Sine die,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Thursday, December 10, 1863.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the Vestry in Chauncy Street at half past three o’clock this afternoon; agreable to previous notice. Present, Messrs. Wales, Rich, Dupee and Messinger.

After considering a communication from Reverend Mr. Ellis, On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Chairman be authorised to confer with Mr. Ellis on the subject of decorating the Church for religious services on Christmas Eve and raising money for that purpose either by collection on the Sabbath, or otherwise and to act in the premises as he shall think proper.

[389] On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to notify all Proprietors of pews in this Church who are in arrears for taxes in the same, that if they are not paid before the 1st day of January next, said pews will be sold.

Adjourned sine die,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Wednesday, March 16, 1864.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the Vestry of the Church, at 4 o’clock in the afternoon of this day, agreable to printed notice deposited in each pew, on the last Lord’s Day, by order of the Standing Committee—as follows.

(Notice)

“To the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston

A Special Meeting of the said Proprietors will be held in the Vestry of the Church, on Wednesday, the 16th day of March current, at 4 o’clock, P.M., to consider a report from the Standing Committee concerning the present financial condition of the Society, and the expediency of increasing the taxes on the pews.

By direction of the Standing Committee

Boston March 5, 1864.

George O. Harris, Proprietors Clerk.”

The meeting being called to order, Thomas B. Wales Esq. was chosen Moderator.

[390] The Treasurer, by request of the Moderator, made a general verbal report to the meeting on the present and prospective condition of the finances of the Society; stating that the current expenses had exceeded the income, from all sources, for several years past, and that some of the invested property of the Society had been used to meet this excess, and with the usual annual expenses this would continue, and the property be annually decreasing in amount, unless other means were used to meet the expenses.

Dr. N. L. Frothingham and John Collamore Esq. made some remarks on the subject.

William Hayden Esquire also corroborated what had been said by the Treasurer, and on his motion, seconded by Mr. G. W. Messinger it was Voted unanimously, That in addition to the taxes already established upon the pews in this Church, there shall be levied and assessed upon each and every pew, an amount equal to 33⅓ per centum or one third the amount heretofore assessed upon said pew, payable, as taxes have heretofore been payable, semi-annually, in the months of April and October, commencing with the next ensuing month of April.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 19, 1864.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held in the Vestry on Chauncey St. at half past three o’clock this afternoon, agreable to notice given.

Present, Messrs. Wales, Rich and Messinger.

The Chairman read to the Meeting the usual report, at the close of the official year, on the financial and other interests of the Society, and it was Voted That this Report be adopted and submitted to the Proprietors at their Annual Meeting, now about to take place.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[391] Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, April 19, 1864.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in this City, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street this afternoon at four o’clock; The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and organized by the choice of William Hayden Esquire for Moderator.

Prayer having been offered by the Pastor, Reverend Rufus Ellis,

The meeting proceeded to ballot for Clerk for the ensuing year, which resulted in the election, by a unanimous vote, of George O. Harris for that office; who then and there took the requisite oath; as follows, viz:

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Suffolk S.S.

Before me, this nineteenth day

of April AD. 1864, personally appeared George O. Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

William Hayden, Justice Peace.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee, being called, submitted and read to the Meeting, the Annual Report of the Committee, which on motion of William Hayden Esq.; it was

Voted be accepted, and placed on file. It is recorded on the following page.

[392] Copy of Report of the Standing Committee

“The Standing Committee of the First Church respectfully submit their Annual Report.

From the Treasurer’s Statement it will appear that the expenses of the Church for the year ending March 31. 1864 were

6120.89

the income during the same period, was

from taxes

2967.50

from rents

200.00

from Church Fund (of $40000) (being more than 6½%)

2635.13

5802.63

leaving a balance of expenses over income of

$318.26

from this is to be deducted the balance received of C. L. Hayward Esq., former Treasurer

254.49

making the balance now due the Treasurer

$63.77

it must be borne in mind that previous to the financial year commencing April 1, 1863, the Church Fund was reduced from $43000. to $40000.; the expenses exceeding the income about $300 in about three or four years. And this present year, if we take out the sum of $300. received from back taxes, the expenses exceed the income more than Six hundred dollars, notwithstanding the small amount of expenses the past year for repairs.

It was deemed advisable by the Standing Committee to call a meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church on the 16th March last, to decide whether the Church fund should be further impaired, or the taxes increased. After a statement from the Treasurer it was unanimously voted that 33⅓ percent should be added to the taxes, and the bills at the advance rate are now being collected by the Treasurer.

Some repairs and alterations in the Vestry are necessary from the crowded state of the Sunday School, and the Church itself should be cleansed and renovated.

Before closing the Committee must allude to the loss of a worthy and faithful officer of the Church, the late Sexton21 who died in February last.

Although a proper respect was shown to his memory by appropriate services in the Church, and a contribution was made for his family, yet as he had entered upon a new quarter from the first of [393] February the Committee would recommend that the quarter’s salary should be paid his widow.

The subject of his successor in office will be a proper matter of reference to the new Standing Committee about to be chosen.

Boston April 19, 1864.

for the Committee

Thomas B. Wales, Chairman.”

The Treasurer read to the Meeting his account for his official year ending 31 March last; remarking that unavoidable circumstances prevented its being examined and certified, as usual, by the Finance Committee.

On Motion it was

Voted That the Treasurer’s Report be accepted and placed on file; provided, the same is audited and certified by the Finance Committee at their earliest convenience.

The meeting Voted to proceed to the election of Treasurer for the ensuing year Messrs. Rich and Messinger were appointed to collect and count the votes. Ballots being taken, they reported George W. Messinger as receiving 9 ballots, being the whole number cast, and he was accordingly pronounced by the Moderator to be duly elected.

The meeting voted to proceed to the election of a Standing Committee for the ensuing year.

Messrs. Rich and Messinger were appointed a committee to collect and count the votes. Ballots being taken they reported the following gentlemen as each receiving 9 votes, being the whole number cast, and they were accordingly declared by the Moderator to be duly elected, viz.

  • Thomas B. Wales
  • Otis Rich
  • Samuel L. Abbot
  • George W. Messinger
  • Nathaniel Thayer
  • John Collamore
  • D. W. Salisbury

[394] On motion of Geo. W. Messinger Esq.

Voted That the Committee of Finance be nominated by the Moderator, who thereupon named the following gentlemen, viz. Messrs. N. B. Doggett, J. Putnam Bradlee, Samuel H. Gookin, which nomination was unanimously agreed to by the votes of the meeting.

On motion of Geo. W. Messinger Esq.

Voted That the Committee on Donations be nominated by the Moderator, who thereupon named the following gentlemen, viz. Reverend Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin, Esq., Samuel L. Abbot, M.D., which nomination was confirmed by a unanimous vote of the Meeting.

On motion,

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty Dollars as a contribution from the funds of this Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1864.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq.

Voted That the subjects recommended by the Standing Committee in their report to this meeting, be referred to the Standing Committee of the ensuing year, with full powers for their action thereon.

The meeting was then adjourned, sine die.

Attest.

George O. Harris,

Proprietors’ Clerk

[395] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 20, 1864.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day, agreable to previous notice, at the Office of Messrs. John E. Thayer and Bro:, No. 40 State Street, at 1 o’clock P.M. Present, Messrs. Thomas B. Wales, Otis Rich, Samuel L. Abbot, Geo. W. Messinger, Nathaniel Thayer and D. W. Salisbury.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and duly organised by the choice of Thomas B. Wales, Esq. for Chairman.

The Chairman, on motion of Mr. Rich, nominated gentlemen to serve on the usual sub-committees as follows:

  • On Music;
  • Messrs. Abbot, Salisbury and Messinger.
  • On Repairs;
  • Messrs. Rich, Thayer, Wales and Collamore.
  • On Sexton’s duties;
  • Messrs. Wales and Collamore.

On motion of Mr. Rich,

Voted That the Committee on Sexton’s duties have full power to employ such person as they may think proper to fill the office of Sexton of the Church.

[396] On motion of Mr. Rich,

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is directed to pay to the widow of M. S. Dodd, deceased, late Sexton of the First Church, Sixty two dollars fifty cents ($62.50) in accordance with the recommendation of the Standing Committee of the last year, and as an acknowledgment of his care and attention to his duties during his service as Sexton of this Church.

On motion of Mr. Thayer,

Voted That the Committee on Music have full power to hire singers for the Choir, and fix their compensation at such prices as they may think proper.

On motion of Mr. Thayer,

Voted That the Clerk’s salary be raised to the sum of Fifty dollars per annum.

On motion of Mr. Rich,

Voted That this meeting be adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Memorandum. The Treasurer returned his annual account to the Clerk, duly certified by the Finance Committee, as being correct, as provided by vote at the last Annual Meeting of the Proprietors, and the same is placed on file.

G. O. H. Clerk.

[397] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Saturday, November 26, 1864.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day, agreable to previous notice, at the Office of Messrs. John E. Thayer and Bro: No 40 State Street, at 12 o’clock, Mer:—Present, Messrs. Thomas B. Wales, Otis Rich, Samuel L. Abbot, Nathaniel Thayer and John Collamore.

The Chairman submitted, for the consideration of the Committee, a letter under date of 26th October last, from George H. Kuhn, enquiring on behalf of the Heirs of the late Mrs. Sarah J. Davis, whether the vote (passed at a special meeting of the Proprietors on the 6th of October 1857.) remains in force, by virtue of which a release can be had from certain restrictions contained in the Deed by this Church to the late Mrs. Sarah J. Davis.

After some discussion it was

Voted That Messrs. Wales and Rich be and hereby are appointed a Committee to consider and report to the Standing Committee what course is advisable to be taken in the matter of releasing the restrictions on the Estate on Summer Street, formerly sold to Mrs. Sarah J. Davis.

Voted That this meeting be adjourned.

George O. Harris, Proprietors Clerk.

[398] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Friday, December, 2, 1864.

The members of the Standing Committee held a meeting at 12 o’clock, noon, this day, at the Office of Messrs. John E. Thayer and Bro: No 40 State St agreably to previous notice.

A letter addressed to the Chairman and signed by Reverend L. B. Schwarz, asking permission to occupy, for use of a Fair, a rear room in the Basement of the Church, was read to the meeting, and after consideration, On motion of Doctor Abbot, it was

Voted That the request of Mr. Schwarz be granted, on condition, that no nails shall be driven in the walls or wood work of the vestry and that the premises shall be returned in other respects in as good condition as they are in at present, and that the Chairman is requested to notify Mr. Schwarz in accordance herewith.22

The meeting then adjourned.

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

[399] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Monday, December 5, 1864.

The Standing Committee held a Meeting this morning at 10’o’clock at the office of Messrs. John E. Thayer and Bros. No 40 State Street.

After further considering the matter of Mr. Kuhn’s application, which was before the Committee at their meeting of the 26. Nov. last;—

On motion of Mr. Thayer it was

Voted That a Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the Church be called, by the usual notice, to meet at 4 o’clock P.M., at the Vestry of the Church, on the 15th day of December current, to reconsider certain votes passed at the Annual Meeting of said Proprietors held on the 20th day of April 1858, and the Meeting then adjourned.

Attest.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[400] Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston December 15, 1864.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held, in the Vestry of the Church at 4 o’clock P.M., this day, agreable to printed notice placed in each pew on the last Lord’s Day.—Copy subjoined.

(Notice)

“To the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church will be held in the Vestry of the Church, on Thursday next, at 4 o’clock, P.M., for the purpose of reconsidering certain votes passed at their Annual meeting, held on the 20th day of April, 1858.

By direction of the Standing Committee,

Boston December 10, 1864.

George O. Harris

Proprietors’ Clerk”

The Meeting being called to order and the above notice read by the Clerk, Samuel H. Gookin, Esq. was chosen Moderator.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee stated to the meeting that he had received a letter from George H. Kuhn Esq., under date of 26 October last, enquiring, on behalf of the Heirs of the late Mrs. Sarah J. Davis, whether a release from certain restrictions contained in the Deed by this Church to the said Mrs. Davis can now be had upon the terms, and under the vote passed [401] 6th October 1857 and renewed 20th April 1858; and that after due consideration, the Committee came to the unanimous opinion that as Mrs. Davis, having been advised of the Votes referred to, did not avail of the offer of adjustment within a reasonable time, it is now, on account of the lapse of time, the change in the value of Real Estate in the vicinity, and other important considerations, inexpedient and unwise to grant a release on those terms.

The letter from Mr. Kuhn and an answer to it from the Chairman, declining to act upon the subject, was read to the meeting; thereupon, it was on motion of J. H. Collamore, Esq.

Voted That the votes passed at a Special Meeting of this Corporation held October 6, 1857 in relation to the restrictions and liabilities existing on the Estates on Summer Street, and reaffirmed at the Annual Meeting held April 20, 1858, be and the same are hereby rescinded and repealed.

Voted That the authority given Messrs. William Hayden and Charles L. Hayward to make execute and deliver such Deeds or other instruments as might be necessary to carry into effect the provisions of the vote passed October 6, 1857; and also authority given them for the same purpose April 20, 1858, be and the same is hereby revoked.

The Meeting then adjourned, sine die.

Attest, George O. Harris,

Proprietors Clerk.

[402] Boston January 15, 1865.

The Church was this day called to mourn the loss of one of its most worthy members in the person of the Honorable Edward Everett who died at his residence, No 32 Summer Street at about four o’clock this morning, 70 years, 9 months, 4 days old.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Monday January 16, 1865.

The Committee held a meeting this day at the Office of Messrs. John E. Thayer and Bro: at half past one o’clock p.m.

The Chairman with appropriate remarks, announced the death of the honorable Edward Everett.

On motion of Nathaniel Thayer Esq., it was

Voted That Messrs. Messinger and Abbot be and hereby are requested to draw up resolutions expressive of the sorrow of this Committee for the decease of their late valued friend and fellow worshipper, the Honorable Edward Everett, and to report the same at an adjourned meeting of this Committee.

[403] On motion of G. W. Messinger, Esq. it was

Voted That this Committee invite Messrs. J. Putnam Bradlee, Turner Sargent, Edward Austin, George W. Wales, Edward Frothingham, Samuel H. Gookin, George O. Shattuck and Joseph L. Henshaw to unite with the Committee for the purpose of making arrangements for the obsequies to the late Honorable Edward Everett at the Church in Chauncy Street on the 19th instant.

On motion of Otis Rich Esq. it was

Voted That this meeting adjourn, to meet at this place tomorrow at one o’clock P.M.

Attest,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

In accordance with the Vote above written, the Clerk sent a note to each of the several gentlemen named, inviting their cooperation.

[404] Adjourned Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, January 17, 1865.

The Committee met this day at the office of Messrs. J. E. Thayer and Bro: at One o’clock, agreably to adjournment from yesterday; most of the gentlemen, invited to join the Committee, were present.

Mr. Messinger, of the Committee appointed at the last meeting, submitted and read a copy of a preamble and resolutions, which, on motion, were unanimously adopted.

A copy is herein under transcribed.

“Whereas it has pleased the All Wise Disposer of events to remove from us by sudden death our esteemed fellow worshipper and beloved friend Edward Everett and

Whereas we wish to put on record an expression of our sense of the great private worth which distinguished him no less than his public virtues; therefore, Be it

Resolved That by his decease the members of the First Church and Congregation have lost one strongly endeared to them by the association which has bound them together as worshippers for many years, past.

Resolved That we gratefully remember the constant interest which our departed friend took in the welfare of our venerable Society; an interest [405] which he manifested to the last by his regular attendance on the Offices of the Sanctuary.

Resolved That we shall always hold his example in precious remembrance as of one who, while he dignified our Nation, especially in her hour of trial, by his unselfish patriotism, humanity and generous devotion to the cause of republican liberty, was no less distinguished for the humility, purity and Christian excellence of his private life.

Resolved That these resolutions be placed on the records of the First Church, and that a copy be transmitted to the family of the deceased with the assurance of our most tender sympathy in this hour of their heavy bereavement.”

On motion of Mr. Rich, it was

Voted that the Clerk cause a copy of the foregoing resolutions to be published in the Daily Advertiser, Journal, and Transcript.

On motion of Mr. Thayer, it was

Voted That a sub-committee, consisting of Messrs. G. W. Messinger, T. B. Wales and J. Putnam Bradlee be and hereby are appointed to make the necessary arrangements, at the Church, for the funeral ceremonies and that all will be present to render their assistance.

[406] On motion of Mr. Bradlee it was

Voted That this meeting adjourn to meet at the Vestry in Chauncy Street at 10 o’clock Thursday forenoon.

Attest,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting at the Vestry.

The members of the Committee, with the gentlemen invited to join them, convened at the vestry at 10 o’clock A.M. Thursday 19th January, agreable to adjournment. J. Putnam Bradlee was chosen Marshall for the occasion and the other members disposed themselves, as assistants, to conduct to their appropriate seats the Officers of the State and City Governments, and of Harvard University, Judges of the Courts, Officers of the Army and Navy, and delegations from numerous Societies and Associations which attended the funeral ceremonies filling the lower pews of the house.

[407] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Sunday January 22, 1865.

A meeting of the Committee was held in the Meetinghouse immediately after divine service, in the afternoon. Present, Messrs. T. B. Wales, G. W. Messinger, N. Thayer, S. L. Abbot, J. Collamore, and D. W. Salisbury. On motion of Mr. Thayer it was unanimously Voted That the thanks of the Standing Committee be presented to Reverend Mr. Ellis for his eloquent and appropriate discourse upon the life and character of Mr. Everett, and that he be requested to furnish a copy for the press.

Voted That the Chairman, T. B. Wales, Esquire and Clerk, George O. Harris be and hereby are requested to call on Mr. Ellis for the purposes named in the preceding vote and have full power and authority to carry out the intentions of the Committee therein.

Voted That the proceedings of the Standing Committee and members of the Congregation associated with them in making arrangements for the funeral ceremonies at the Church on the interment of the late Edward Everett, be appended to Mr. Ellis’ discourse in the pamphlet containing the same.

The meeting then adjourned, sine die.

Attest.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[408]

[Blank]

[409] Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, April 18, 1865.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church in this City, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street this afternoon at four o’clock. The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and organised by the choice of Nathaniel Thayer, Esquire for Moderator.

Prayer having been offered by the Pastor, Reverend Rufus Ellis, The meeting proceeded to ballot for Clerk for the ensuing year;

Votes being taken and counted by a Committee appointed for that purpose, they reported the whole number cast to be 8 ballots, all for George O. Harris who was declared to be elected to fill that office, and who then and there took the requisite oath, as follows, viz:

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Before me, this eighteenth day

Suffolk S.S

of April AD, 1865, personally appeared George O. Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

Nathaniel Thayer, Justice of the Peace.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee being called, submitted and read to the meeting the Annual Report of the Committee, which on motion, it was Voted be accepted, and placed on file.

[410] Copy of the Report of the Standing Committee.

“The Standing Committee of the First Church submit their annual report.

From the Treasurer’s report it appears that the expenses for the year ending 1st April 1865. amount to

$8522.55

the receipts from taxes and income

7040.52

leaving a balance of

Expenses over receipts of

$1482.03

This deficiency arises mainly from large sums expended for repairs, which for the past year have been as follows.

for interior repairs; carpenters, painters’ work and for furnace, whitewashing, carpets and materials

917.40

washing the Church, aisles, pews and windows and glass ceiling

164.60

repairs of organ

582.18

repairs of roof and belfry

240.26

$1904.44

The expenses of the Choir this year

$1961.59

while those of last year were

1656.50

305.09

$2209.53

Although the income of this year is nearly one thousand dollars larger than last year, yet the extraordinary expenses have caused the regular funds to be reduced $1500.

The amount received for taxes is $546.09 larger than last year.

It would not seem advisable to raise the taxes any higher than the present rates, as the estimated income will be sufficient for the ordinary expenditures.

A fire occurred in the Vestry since the commencement of the year, but the damage was trifling, and was paid cheerfully by the Insurance Companies. It was found at this time that all the insurance $15000. was upon the building, and that the organ and other personal property, carpets, piano and furniture belonging to the Church were not insured. It was deemed adviseable to cause to be effected at the Fireman’s Insurance Company to cover $4000. value, of which $2000. was on the organ.

There has been no appraisement of the personal property or movable effects of the Church, which might be estimated at $6000. and upwards.

The sexton applies for an increase of salary on the ground that all the [411] other churches are paying more, it might be well to refer the subject to a sub-committee. It is to be hoped no repairs of consequence will be required for a long time, and that the fund of the Church will suffer no further reduction, and that some more economical arrangement be made for the Choir, if the members of the same continue to demand higher salaries.

Respectfully submitted,

Thomas B. Wales

Chairman of the First Church.

Boston 18 April 1865.”

The Treasurer read to the meeting his account for the year ending 31st March last.

On motion, it was

Voted That the same be accepted and placed on file provided it is audited and certified to by the Finance Committee at their earliest convenience.

The meeting voted to proceed to the elections of a Treasurer for the ensuing year.

Messrs. Gookin and Collamore were appointed by the Moderator a Committee to collect, sort and count votes. Ballots being taken, they reported George W. Messinger to have received 8 votes, being the whole number cast, and he was accordingly declared to be duly elected.

The meeting voted to proceed to the election of a Standing Committee. Ballots being taken, the following gentlemen were reported as receiving the requisite number of votes, and were accordingly declared as duly elected, viz.

  • Thomas B. Wales
  • Otis Rich
  • Saumel L. Abbot
  • George W. Messinger
  • Nathaniel Thayer
  • John Collamore
  • D. W. Salisbury

[412] On motion it was

Voted The usual Committee of Finance be appointed by the Moderator, who thereupon nominated the following gentlemen viz: Messrs. N. B. Doggett, J. Putnam Bradlee, Samuel H. Gookin, which appointment was confirmed by the votes of the meeting.

On motion it was

Voted That the Committee on Donations be appointed by the Moderator, who thereupon nominated the following gentlemen, viz. Reverend Rufus Ellis, Samuel H. Gookin Esq., Samuel L. Abbot, M.D., which appointment was confirmed by the votes of the meeting.

On motion of T. B. Wales Esq. it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty Dollars as a contribution from the funds of this Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1865.

On motion of Samuel H. Gookin Esq., seconded by Frederick H. Bradlee Esq.

Voted That, in view of the largely increased cost of the necessaries of life, the sum of fifteen hundred dollars, in addition to his present salary, be given to our Pastor during the year 1865, in quarterly instalments.

On motion of Ralph Huntington Esq. it was

Voted That the subject of pews, on which taxes are not paid, be referred to the Standing Committee and that they be and hereby are authorised to sell the same.

The meeting then adjourned.

Attest,

George O. Harris

Proprietors’ Clerk

[413] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Monday, April 24, 1865.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day, agreable to previous notice, at the office of Messrs. J. E. Thayer and Bro: No 40 State Street at 10 o’clock A.M. Present, Messrs. Wales, Abbot, Thayer, Messinger, Collamore and Salisbury.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk and duly organised by the choice of Thomas B. Wales, Esq. for Chairman.

On motion,

The Chairman appointed the following gentlemen to serve, respectively, on the usual Sub-Committees, viz.

  • On Music;
  • Messrs. Abbot, Salisbury and Messinger.
  • On Repairs;
  • Messrs. Rich, Thayer, Wales and Collamore.
  • On Sexton’s Duties;
  • Messrs. Wales and Collamore.

On motion it was

Voted That the Sub-Committee on Sexton’s duties be and hereby are empowered to engage the services of a Sexton for the Church and to arrange to pay him such salary as they may deem to be proper.

The meeting adjourned.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[414] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Wednesday, June 21, 1865.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day, agreable to previous notice, at the office of Messrs. John E. Thayer and Bro:, No 40 State Street, at noon this day. Present, Messrs. Wales, Abbot, Thayer, Messinger and Rich.

A request from Ralph Huntington Esq. and other Proprietors, for a parish meeting to be held for the consideration of the expediency of building a new Church was laid before the Committee.

On motion of Mr. Rich it was

Voted That in conformity with the request of sundry proprietors of the First Church, the Clerk is hereby directed to call a meeting of the proprietors, by the usual notice, to be held at the vestry of the Church, on Thursday, June 29th at half past three o’clock p.m. to consider the expediency of building a new Church and to act upon any other business that may regularly come before the meeting.

The meeting adjourned.

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

[415] Special Meeting of Proprietors. Boston Thursday, June 29, 1865.

A Special meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the vestry of the Church, at half past three o’clock, this afternoon, agreable to a printed notice placed in each pew on the last Lord’s Day; a notice being also read from the pulpit on the same day, as follows:

“To the Proprietors of the First Church

A special meeting of the Proprietors will be held in the Vestry of the Church, on Thursday next, June 29, at 3½ o’clock P.M., to consider the expediency of building a new church, and to act upon any other business that may regularly come before the meeting.

By direction of the Standing Committee

George O. Harris, Proprietors’ Clerk.

Boston June 24, 1865.”

Present:

  • Messrs. Ralph Huntington
  • Peter C. Brooks
  • S. H. Gookin
  • George W. Wales
  • Samuel L. Abbot M.D.
  • William Hayden
  • Horace Dupee M.D.
  • George W. Messinger
  • John Collamore
  • Thomas B. Wales
  • Otis Rich
  • Nathaniel Thayer
  • Rev. N. L. Frothingham
  • D. W. Salisbury
  • William Everett
  • Edwin H. Hall
  • Sydney B. Morse
  • N. B. Doggett
  • Geo. O. Harris
  • Henry W. Abbot
  • George O. Shattuck

The meeting being called to order and the foregoing notice read by the Clerk; Thomas B. Wales, Esq. was chosen Moderator.

[416] Mr. Messinger offered the following resolution and votes, which were seconded by William Everett Esq. and after discussion unanimously adopted.

Resolved That it is expedient to purchase land upon which to erect a new Church edifice for this Society.

Voted That the Standing Committee together with five other proprietors, to be nominated by the moderator, are hereby appointed a Committee with full powers to purchase land, build a new Church edifice, with a vestry and parsonage, if they deem expedient.

Voted That the abovenamed Committee are hereby authorised to sell and convey the estate on Chauncy Street in Boston, on which the present church stands, including all the real estate of this Society on said Street, and all property connected therewith, and also all other property real and personal belonging to the Society at such times, on such terms and in such manner as they shall deem expedient.

Voted That said Committee have power to fill any vacancy.

The Moderator, in conformity with the first of the foregoing votes, nominated the following gentlemen, George O. Shattuck, Samuel H. Gookin, Edward Austin, Turner Sargent and John E. Piper [417] to join the Standing Committee and together constitute a building committee. The nomination being referred to the meeting was unanimously confirmed.

The meeting then adjourned, sine die.

Attest, Geo. O. Harris, Clerk.

Boston, Saturday July 1, 1865.

The Building Committee met this day at 12 o’clock noon, agreable to notice, at the office of Messrs. J. E. Thayer and Bro:; being called to order, George W. Messinger, Esq. was chosen Chairman of the Committee.

A communication was received from Mr. John E. Piper, declining to serve on the Committee and it was

Voted That the same be accepted and placed on file.

On motion of Mr. Thayer it was

Voted That Messrs. G. W. Messinger, S. H. Gookin, G. O. Shattuck and N. Thayer be and hereby are appointed a Committee on Land and authorised and requested to select a lot or lots of land for a Site for a new church edifice and report to this Committee at an early day.

The Committee then adjourned.

Geo. O. Harris, Proprietors Clerk.

(The further proceedings of the Building Committee are recorded in a separate Record Book. G.O.H.)

April 17, 1866.

The Standing Committee of the First Church held a meeting this day in the vestry of the Church in Chauncy St. at 3½ o’clock P.M.; at which the Annual Report of the Committee, to be submitted to the Proprietors, was read and unanimously adopted. The meeting then adjourned sine die.

Attest Geo. O. Harris, Clerk.

[418] Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, April 17, 1866.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in this City, having been duly and legally notified, was held at the vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street, this afternoon, at four o’clock.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, and organized by the choice of Samuel H. Gookin for Moderator;

Prayer having been offered by the Pastor, Reverend Rufus Ellis;

The meeting proceeded to ballot for Clerk for the ensuing year, which resulted in the election of George O. Harris, for that office; who then and there took the requisite oath, as follows, viz.

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Before me, this seventeenth day

Suffolk S.S.

of April A.D. 1866. personally appeared George O. Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

John Collamore Justice of the Peace.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee read and submitted to the meeting the Annual Report of the Committee, which on motion of William Everett, Esq. it was Voted be accepted and placed on file.

[419] Copy of Report from the Standing Committee

“The Standing Committee of the First Church beg leave to present their Annual Report.

Since the last Annual Meeting a Special Meeting of the Proprietors was held at which a Committee, consisting of the Standing Committee and five other proprietors, were appointed a Building Committee, with authority to purchase a lot suitable for the erection of a new Church edifice. A lot of land was purchased of the City of Boston at the corner of Berkley and Marlboro Streets for $3. per foot, payable ten per cent cash, and the balance in nine instalments, and interest at six per cent.

The Treasurer paid the first instalment of $5880. in September last and received a Bond of the City. The Lot purchased contains 19600 feet at $3. $58800.

The building Committee met several times, and examined various plans, and obtained estimates of Architects, and builders, but on account of the extremely high price of materials and labor it was unanimously concluded to postpone making any contract at that time.

It remains for the Proprietors to determine if the Building Committee shall proceed at their discretion to make a contract during the present year. Presuming that building materials and labor will be lower, it would seem desirable, that a foundation for the new edifice should be laid this fall, so that the Church can be erected next year.

During the past year the expenses of the Church, in consequence of the advance in the Salaries of the Pastor, Choir and Sexton have increased, while the receipts, owing to the purchase of land have diminished. As the next payment for land and interest on the balance of the purchase money payable on the 15th September next will amount to more than nine thousand dollars ($9000.) it will be necessary to increase the taxes on the Pews 1st October next, or materially reduce the Church Fund.

Berkeley Street Meeting House Interior, circa 1868

As regards the Sale of the present Church, it would not seem expedient to take any steps at the present time, as the property will probably advance in value next year, and the present Church must be occupied for more than a year by the Society.

Respectfully submitted,

(signed) Thomas B. Wales Chairman.

Boston 17th April 1866.”

[420] On motion of William Everett, Esq. it was

Voted That the report of the Standing Committee be accepted and placed on file.

The Treasurer presented and read to the meeting his report of receipts and expenditures since the 1st April 1865, as follows.

“Credits

By balance from last account

90.74

By Cash for Taxes April 1 ’65 to Oct. 1 ’65

1646.67

Cash October 1 ’65 to April 1. ’66

1692.17

Cash rent of cellar one year

75.

37.50

112.50

3451.34

By Cash Dividends and Interest, viz.

July dividend Fitchburg RailRoad

255.00

dividend Conn. River RailRoad

160.00

dividends Bank Stock

530.00

Interest Ogdensburgh Bonds

133.

Extra Coupons

61.75

194.75

Interest Western RailRoad Bonds

285.00

6 percent on U. S. 6s of 1881.

240.–

5 percent on U. S. 10–40s

50.–

premiums on gold

117.50

407.50

7 3/10 on Currency Bonds

365.00

6 percent on Mercantile Savings Institution

60.00

premium on Fitchburg Railroad Stock

267.04

2524.29

Fitchburg Railroad Stock

8500.00

By Cash of Mr. Ellis for Sales of books

16.00

(Receipts)

$14582.10

Debits

To cash paid

Salary of Pastor quarter ending May 1/65

$875.00

Salary of Pastor quarter ending Aug 1/65

1250.00

Salary of Pastor quarter ending Nov: 1/65

1250.00

Salary of Pastor quarter ending Feb 1/66

1250.00

4625.00

Choir, D. Paine organist quarter ending

May 1/65

490.25

Aug 1/65

521.50

Nov. 1/65

521.50

Feb 1/66

521.50

extra music

23.47

2078.22

Sexton, Salary to 1st May ’65

62.50

sundries extra

45.30

107.80

June 19 paid on account of increase

50.–

Aug. 1 salary

100.–

Nov. 1 salary $75. sundries 67.75

142.75

Jan 13/66 sundry bills paid

29.36

Feb 1/66 salary $75. sundries 26.25

101.75

531.66

(amount carried up)

7234.88

(Treasurer’s Account continued)

[421]

amount brought forward

7234.88

Fuel

S. Piper and Co. bill

95.75

W. H. Prentice

44.

139.75

Printing

John Wilson and sons sermon etc.

89.15

Ditto

9.00

H. W. Dutton and son

2.00

100.15

Daily Advertiser and Journal, notices church resolves on Mr. Everett

9.00

Repairs

J. Borrowscale repair of roof

23.29

E. Farrar painting

15.00

S.N. Stetson Gas fixtures

4.75

43.14

Taxes

Water tax

11.00

City tax

47.40

58.40

Gas

Boston Gas Company

22.43

Insurance at Eliot and Fireman’s Ins. Company on building $15000. personal property $4000.

90.00

Land paid 1st instalment on

$58800.

10 percent

$5880.

Stamps

3.50

5883.50

paid G. J. F. Bryant for plans etc. as agreed with

N. Thayer, Esquire

100.00

Salaries and Commissions

Salary of G. O. Harris, Proprietors Clerk

$50.–

Ditto of Treasurer

50.–

Commission paid for collecting taxes

172.55

272.55

(payments)

$13953.80

Balance to credit in new account

$628.30

E. E.

(signed) G. W. Messinger, Treasurer.

Investments

Conn. River RailRoad stock

$2000.

Ogdensburgh 1st mortgage

2000.

Continental National Bank

4000.

Everett National Bank

6000.

Mercantile Savings Institution

1000.

U. S. Bonds 6s

4000.

U.S. Bonds 10–40s

1000.

Currency Bonds 7 3/10

5000.

Western Railroad Bonds

5000.

Land account

5880.

$35880.

(over)

[422] On motion of J. Collamore Esq. it was

Voted That the Report of the Treasurer be accepted.

The meeting voted to proceed to the election of a Treasurer for the ensuing year.

Messrs. Salisbury and Collamore were appointed a Committee to collect, sort and count the votes. Ballots being taken, they reported George W. Messinger as having received all the votes (10) and he was accordingly declared elected.

The meeting voted to proceed to the election of a Standing Committee for the ensuing year.

Ballots being taken, the following gentlemen were reported as receiving the requisite number of votes and were accordingly declared as duly elected, viz.

  • Thomas B. Wales
  • Samuel L. Abbot
  • George W. Messinger
  • Nathaniel Thayer
  • John Collamore
  • D. W. Salisbury
  • Samuel H. Gookin

On motion, it was

Voted That the usual Committee of Finance be appointed by the Moderator who thereupon nominated the following gentlemen, viz: Messrs. N. B. Doggett, J. Putnam Bradlee, Samuel H. Gookin, which appointments were confirmed by the meeting.

[423] A circular from a Committee of the “Boston Association of Churches” was read to the meeting, asking for contributions for the use of the American Unitarian Association.

On motion of Doct. Samuel L. Abbot, it was

Voted That a Committee of 5 be appointed by the Moderator, as a Committee on Donations and Charities. The following gentlemen were nominated and confirmed by the meeting, viz.

  • Reverend Rufus Ellis
  • William Everett
  • Dr. Horace Dupee
  • Edward R. Hall
  • Thomas Goddard

On motion, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to pay Twenty dollars as a contribution from the funds of this Corporation, to the expenses of the Unitarian Festival for the year 1866.

After being moved and seconded, it was

Voted That the sum of Fifteen hundred dollars, in addition to his present salary, be given to our Pastor during the year 1866, in quarterly instalments.

On motion of Mr. Shattuck, it was

Voted That a Committee of Three be appointed by the Moderator to consider the subject of increasing the taxes on the pews, or in some other way of meeting the current expenses of the year and report at an adjourned meeting.

The following gentlemen were thereupon nominated and confirmed by the meeting, Messrs. George O. Shattuck, D. W. Salisbury, Thomas B. Wales.

[424] On motion of John Collamore Esquire it was

Voted That the Standing Committee for the present year, with George O. Shattuck, Horace Dupee, Edward Austin, Turner Sargent and George O. Harris are hereby constituted the Building Committee for the erection of a new church edifice with all the powers conferred on said Committee.

June 29, 1865 (at a Special Meeting of the Proprietors).

On motion of John Collamore, Esquire it was

Voted That the purchase of land at the corner of Berkley and Marlboro Streets, made by the Building Committee, be and the same is hereby confirmed.

A Petition was presented, and read to the meeting, from E. A. Cushing, the present owner of the estate next adjoining the land of this church on the south side, praying for the removal of certain conditions embraced in a deed by the Proprietors of the First Church conveying said estate.

On motion of Otis Rich, Esquire it was

Voted That this petition be referred to the Standing Committee, to consider and report at a future meeting of the Proprietors what action, if any, it may be expedient for them to take in the matter.

[425] On motion of George O. Shattuck, the meeting adjourned to meet on the Second Sunday in May next.

Attest.—George O. Harris,

Proprietors’ Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 28, 1866.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day, agreably to notice given, at the vestry in Chauncy Street, at 10 o’clock A.M. Present, Messrs. Thomas B. Wales, Samuel L. Abbot, George W. Messinger, Nathaniel Thayer, John Collamore, D. W. Salisbury, Samuel H. Gookin.

The meeting was called to order by the clerk.

On motion to proceed to the choice of Chairman Thomas B. Wales, Esq. was unanimously chosen Chairman of the Committee.

On motion, the Chairman appointed the following gentlemen to serve respectively, on the usual sub-committees—viz:

  • On Music;
    • Messrs. Abbot, Salisbury and Gookin.
  • On Repairs;
    • Messrs. Gookin, Thayer, Wales and Collamore.
  • On Sexton’s duties;
    • Messrs. Wales and Collamore.

[426] After some conversation regarding the titles to certain pews in the Church, it was moved and seconded, the Chairman nominate a Committee on Pews to investigate and report at the next meeting of the Standing Committee. Messrs. Messinger and Collamore were chosen to serve on this committee.

It was moved and seconded, that the Chairman nominate a Committee to consider the petition of E. A. Cushing, which, at the last Annual Meeting was, by the Proprietors, referred to the Standing Committee; Messrs. Wales, Salisbury and Collamore were chosen to serve on this committee and requested to report at a future meeting.

The meeting adjourned to meet again at this place, at 10 o’clock in the forenoon of Wednesday, the 9th of May next.

Attest,

George O. Harris,

Proprietors’ Clerk.

May 9, 1866.

The Standing Committee met this day agreably to adjournment from the 28th April. On motion, John Collamore, Esquire in the absence of the Chairman was chosen Chairman, pro tem.:

On motion of Mr. Messinger it was

Voted That the Clerk be directed to call a meeting of the Building Committee to meet at the vestry, at 10 o’clock A.M. Friday, May 11, for organisation and to consider [427] the subject of erecting a new church edifice.

The meeting then adjourned, sine die.

Attest, George O. Harris, Clerk.

Copy of letter from the Vicar of Boston, England, to Turner Sargent, Esquire, who was requested by the Building Committee of the First Church to correspond, with a view of obtaining official information about John Cotton’s pulpit.23

Boston Lincolnshire

December 4th 1865.

Sir,

I beg to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of Nov. 20th—and in accordance with your desire proceed to reply as early as possible.

It is quite true (as you state) that the idea of John Cotton’s pulpit being removed to America to the State of Massachusetts with which he was so closely connected—has at different times been mentioned both among inhabitants of this Town and visitors from the Transatlantic Boston; but there have never been yet any serious steps taken in connection with the subject, nor any proposals yet made for the erection of a new Pulpit in this Church.—When such steps are taken, I am quite sure that myself and the Church-wardens as custodians of the Church will be prepared to give our best attention to the proposition.

There has, however, always appeared to me a “prima facie” difficulty in the case—viz. to whose hands in America the pulpit should be given up, if ever it should be removed; and I incline to the opinion, that it should be made over to the State and not to any religious body. If I am informed correctly, the First Church in Boston, of which Cotton was Pastor, has left the faith which he preached, and lapsed into a form of doctrine which he labored to overthrow;—so that, however historically entitled to possess his pulpit, it would be manifestly incongruous to present it to them. It would also be difficult at this distance and with our imperfect information of relative claims, to make a fair and honorable selection of any other religious body; and I can see no better course, if the proposal ever becomes seriously entertained, than making over the pulpit as an historical and antiquarian relic, to the State of Massachusetts.

At present, however, all these remarks are premature: and I [428] simply make them with a view of shewing that the subject is not new to me, nor one in which I am uninterested, but that, so far as I am officially concerned, I shall be prepared to entertain it in due course, and endeavor to do what seems to be best.

Begging you and the Committee of the First Church to accept my best wishes for the welfare of the great people of America, and the expression of my wish that the cords of unity between England and America may be drawn closer and closer, I remain

Sir,

Your faithful Servant.

G. B. Blenkin M.A.

Vicar of Boston Lincolnshire England.

To Turner Sargent, Esquire

59 Beacon Street

Boston Massachusetts United States

Adjourned Annual Meeting. Sunday May 13, 1866.

The adjourned annual meeting was held this day, in the Church in Chauncy Street, after the morning service; Samuel H. Gookin Esquire in the Chair.

In the absence of the Clerk, Doct. S. L. Abbot was chosen Secretary, pro tem.

The Treasurer moved that from July 15th to Sept. 2d inclusive the afternoon service in the Church be omitted. The motion was seconded by J. Collamore, Esquire.

The Pastor having been called upon by [429] the Chairman to express his opinion upon the subject, did so with some reluctance, wishing to hear rather from the members of the Society. He said his mind was divided upon the matter, and he gave very good reasons for and against the motion.

The question having been called for, Mr. Messinger’s motion was adopted by 10 ayes to 7 noes.

On motion of Geo. W. Messinger, Esq., it was voted that the Societies of the “Second Church,” Reverend Chandler Robbins and the “New South,” Reverend W. P. Tilden, be invited to unite in worship with the First Church during the summer months.

On motion of Mr. Collamore, the meeting was dissolved.

(Signed) S. L. Abbot, Secretary pro tem.

Attest, George O. Harris, Proprietors’ Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, June 19, 1866.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held at the office of Messrs.

John E. Thayer and Bro: at halfpast 10 o’clock this morning; all the members present.

On motion of Mr. Collamore, it was

Voted That a tax be assessed upon the Pews in the First Church equal to that voted by the [430] Proprietors in 1864.

Voted That the Treasurer proceed at once to collect the unpaid taxes on all pews, and take such legal measures as may be necessary to a sale of all the Pews on which the taxes then due, shall remain unpaid.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Record of a Notice given to the Proprietors of Pews in the “First Church”, on which taxes remain unpaid.

“The Treasurer of the First Church in Boston hereby gives Notice that the taxes shown in the annexed schedule have been duly assessed upon the proprietors of the pews and that such assessment was completed and delivered to him on the 28th day of June AD. 1866. and if any of said taxes remain unpaid for three months after said date he will proceed to collect the same according to law.

Boston June 28, 1866.

(Signed) G. W. Messinger, Treasurer.

Number of Pew. Amount of tax.

No. 3.

$20.00

9.

20.00

13.

14.00

14.

18.00

15.

18.00

16.

16.00

20.

14.00

21.

14.00

22.

14.00

23.

16.00

24.

16.00

48.

22.00

50.

20.00

51.

20.00

68.

20.00

76.

16.00

78.

16.00

79.

16.00

80.

16.00

81.

16.00

84.

16.00

85.

16.00

86.

18.00

87.

18.00

88.

14.00

94.

20.00

95.

20.00

Number of Pew. Amount of tax.

No. 97.

$20.00

98.

10.00

99.

20.00

103.

10.00

104.

10.00

105.

10.00

108.

10.00

110.

10.00

112.

12.00

113.

10.00

114.

10.00

115.

10.00

116.

12.00

120.

10.00

121.

10.00

122.

10.00

123.

10.00

124.

12.00

125.

12.00

126.

10.00

127.

10.00

128.

10.00

129.

12.00

131.

12.00

132.

12.00

133.

10.00

134.

10.00

[431] One copy of the foregoing notice posted in the usual place, in the front entry of the Church, as per copy of certificate thereto by the Sexton of the Church.

“Boston July 1. 1866. Posted a bill of which this is a copy and correct, on the out side of the front door of the First Church this day.

(signed) E. Sanborn, Sexton.”

“Boston October 6, 1866. The above bill remained on the outside of the principal door undisturbed until this day and this copy in the entry case in full view.

(Signed) E. Sanborn, Sexton.”

and

One copy posted on the outside face of the front door of the Church, as per copy of certificate thereto by the Treasurer of the Corporation.

“Boston October 14, 1866. I hereby certify that this notice was duly posted by my orders on the front door of the First Church on the 1st July 1866 and remained until October 6, 1866. when it was taken down by the Sexton at my request.

(Signed) G. W. Messinger, Treasurer.”

Memorandum. The above named notices on file with the Clerk.

A true copy; attest, George O. Harris, Proprietors’ Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston November 29, 1866.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day at the vestry of the Church, in Chauncy Street, at 10 o’clock A.M. agreably to previous notice given.

Present, Mr. T. B. Wales, chairman, with Messrs. Gookin, Messinger, Thayer, Collamore and Salisbury.

In the absence of the Clerk, Mr. Salisbury was chosen Clerk, pro tem.

The Clerk read to the meeting an abstract from the record of the proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the Proprietors held April 17, 1866; also a similar abstract from the proceedings of the Standing Committee at a meeting held April 28, 1866.

[432] A report was presented and read to the meeting by Mr. Salisbury from the Committee on the petition of Mrs. E. A. Cushing.

On motion of Mr. Gookin, it was Voted That this report be accepted.

On motion of Mr. Collamore, it was

Voted That the Clerk be directed to call a meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church, by the usual notice, to be held at the Vestry on Thursday the 6th day of December next, at 4 o’clock P.M. to receive and consider a report from the Standing Committee on the subject of releasing the restrictions on the Estate (next south) formerly of the First Church, now of E. A. Cushing.

On motion of Mr. Thayer, it was

Voted That Mr. Salisbury be requested to have a survey made by Mr. Fuller of the land belonging to the First Church in Chauncy Street.

On motion of Mr. Thayer, it was

Voted That a Committee be appointed to obtain information relating to a sale of the property belonging to the Church in Chauncy Street.

Messrs. Thayer, Gookin and Salisbury were nominated and chosen to serve on this Committee.

On motion of Mr. Collamore it was

Voted That a Committee be appointed with full power to do all necessary acts to effect a sale of pews in the Church on which arrears of taxes are due.

Messrs. Messinger and Collamore were nominated and chosen to serve on this Committee.

[433] On motion of Mr. Thayer; it was

Voted That it is not expedient at the present time to take up a Collection in this Church for the Freedmen.

On motion of Mr. Gookin; it was

Voted That this meeting adjourn, sine die.

Recorded from minutes taken by

D. W. Salisbury, Clerk, pro tem.

George O. Harris, Proprietors’ Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Thursday, December 6, 1866.

A special meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the vestry of the Church at 4 o’clock P.M. of this day, agreable to printed notice, deposited in each pew, on the last Lord’s day; by order of the Standing Committee.

Notice

“To the Proprietors of the First Church.

A special meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church will be held in the Vestry of the Church, on Thursday next, (December 6th) at 4 o’clock P.M., to receive and consider a report from the Standing Committee on the subject of releasing the restrictions on the Estate (next south) formerly of the First Church, now of E. A. Cushing.

By direction of the Standing Committee;

George O. Harris, Proprietors’ Clerk.”

Boston November 29, 1866.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk.

Present, Turner Sargent, Geo. W. Messinger, John Collamore, D. W. Salisbury, Geo. O. Harris. John Collamore, Esquire, was chosen Moderator.

The Standing Committee submitted to the meeting [434] the following report by D. W. Salisbury, Esquire of the sub-committee, appointed by them 28th April last, “to consider and report on a petition of Mrs. E. A. Cushing”.

“Boston November 27, 1866. The committee to whom Mrs. Cushing’s petition was referred ask leave to report That the Deed from the Proprietors of the First Church conveying the land held by her contains the following clauses, viz.

“And also upon the further condition, that no building or buildings erected, or to be hereafter erected, on the said land, shall ever be used or occupied or employed for any purpose whatever other than for a dwelling or dwellings, or for a school house, without the consent of the proprietors of the land on the northeast adjoining thereto, being first had and obtained in writing.”

The Committee had an interview with Mr. Baldwin the Agent of Mrs. Cushing, on May 8th last, at which he was informed that the Committee would advise a removal of the conditions abovenamed on the payment by Mrs. Cushing of the sum of Ten thousand dollars.

No further action in the matter was taken by the parties till last week, when Mr. Baldwin informed the Committee that Mrs. Cushing was anxious that the restrictions in question should be removed: and was ready to pay the sum named by the Committee; namely ten thousand dollars, on the execution of a release by the Proprietors of the First Church.

It is the unanimous opinion of the Committee that this offer should be accepted.

Respectfully submitted

(Signed) D. W. Salisbury for the Committee.”

On motion of T. Sargent, Esquire the following preamble and votes were considered and unanimously adopted viz.

Whereas by deed bearing date the twenty fourth day of January A.D. eighteen hundred twenty nine, and recorded with Suffolk Deeds, Lib: 335 Fol: 82, James Morrill and James H. Foster, Deacons of the First Church in Boston, conveyed to Gideon F. Thayer a certain parcel of land, bounding Southeasterly on Chauncy Place, now Chauncy Street, and there measuring forty eight feet, and said Deed contained the following condition viz: “Provided nevertheless and this grant is upon the condition that no building or buildings shall ever be placed or erected on the said land or on any part [435] thereof whereof the external walls shall be of any other material than brick or stone; and also upon the further condition that no buildings or building, erected or to be hereafter erected on the said land shall ever be used occupied or employed for any purpose whatever other than for a dwelling or dwellings or for a school house, without the consent of the proprietors of the land on the Northeast, adjoining thereto being first had and obtained in writing.

And Whereas the present owners of said land have offered to pay ten thousand dollars for a release of said condition, it is now thereupon

Voted That upon the payment of ten thousand dollars by or in behalf of the owners of said estate to the Treasurer of the First Church in Boston, said Church will release said estate from said conditions.

Voted That Messrs. George W. Messinger and D. Waldo Salisbury be a committee in behalf of the First Church, in Boston with full authority to make, execute and deliver such deed or deeds as may be necessary to carry into effect the foregoing vote.

The meeting adjournd, sine die.

Attest George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston March 9, 1867.

The Standing Committee held a meeting at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street, at 3 o’clock P.M. agreably to notice given. Present, Messrs. Wales, Thayer, Messinger, Collamore and Salisbury.

The Pastor (Rev. Rufus Ellis), being present, introduced the subject of holding religious services at the time of laying the corner stone of the New Church edifice.

[436] 1867.

On motion of Mr. Thayer, it was

Voted That the arrangements for the ceremonies at the laying of the cornerstone of the New Church be in charge of the Pastor and the Chairman of the Building Committee, with full powers to act in the premises.

Mr. Collamore made a verbal report on the present status of the holding of the pews, say, the number of pews owned by the Corporation and by individual Proprietors.

On motion of Mr. Collamore, it was

Voted That the Clerk be and hereby is directed to call a meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church, to be held on Friday, the 22d instant, at 4 o’clock P.M., in the vestry of the Church, in Chauncy Street, to consider the subject of an increase of the taxes on the pews.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Friday, March 22, 1867.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church was held in the vestry of the Church, at 4 o’clock P.M. of this day, agreably to the following notice placed in each pew on the last Lord’s Day, by order of the Standing [437] Committee.

(Copy of Notice)

“To the Proprietors of the First Church

A special meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church will be held in the vestry of the Church, on Friday next. (March 22d) at 4 o’clock P.M. to consider the subject of an increase of the taxes on the pews.

By direction of the Standing Committee.

(signed) George O. Harris

Proprietors’ Clerk.”

Boston March 16, 1867.

The meeting being called to order by the Clerk, Samuel H. Gookin was chosen Moderator.

Mr. Collamore stated that the income from taxes and other sources for the present year would be insufficient to meet the current expenses.

After some discussion as to the expediency of raising the deficiency by private subscription, on motion of Mr. Collamore, duly seconded, it was

Voted That the taxes on the pews be increased fifty per cent over the taxes of the last year.

On Motion of Mr. Collamore, duly seconded, it was

Voted That the Committee on Music be requested to consider early the subject of music for the coming year and see if the expenses for the Choir can be reduced, and that they have full powers to make any change they may deem expedient.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[438] Boston Thursday, April 4, 1867.

The “Corner Stone” of the new Church edifice, erecting for the Society of the “First Church”, was laid this day, at 4 o’clock P.M. by Reverend Rufus Ellis, with appropriate ceremonies.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Tuesday, April 16, 1867.

The Standing Committee met at the vestry, at 3 o’clock p.m. according to notice—Thomas B. Wales Esquire in the Chair. A report of the doings of the Committee during the past year, with a Statement of the receipts and expenditures—Also a report of progress in building the New Church, were read and adopted by the Committee to be submitted to the Proprietors at their forthcoming meeting.

Mr. Collamore, of the Committee appointed, 29th Nov. 1866, “to do all necessary acts to effect a sale of pews in the Church, on which arrears of taxes are due”, reported, and on motion of Mr. Salisbury, it was

Voted That the report be accepted and recorded with the annexed Schedule of Pews belonging to the Society.

[439] “Boston April 16, 1867. The Committee appointed on the 29th November last to take action on such Pews as were in arrears for taxes, beg to report that, They have either collected the taxes due or obtained a release of all such Pews, except the following viz:

Pew No

48.

Estate of L. Bartlett.

15.

Estate of Woodbury.

85.

Estate of John Pierce.

125.

Estate of J. Prescott Bigelow.

75.

—J. Symes.

9.

—Joseph West.

and these they recommend being sold early in May. They also annex a list of Pews which they believe belong to the Society, but owing to the fact that the late Treasurer, Mr. Charles L. Hayward did not hand over to the present Treasurer his books; and also the records of Deeds and Transfers having been so loosely kept that in a few cases it has been difficult to ascertain positive ownership.

for the Committee

(signed) John Collamore.

Memorandum: 75 Proprietors Pews.

  • 53 Society Pews
  • 6—Pews they advise being sold for the taxes now due.”

On motion of Mr. Messinger, the meeting was dissolved,

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[440] Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, April 16, 1867.

The annual meeting of the Proprietors of the “First Church” in this City, having been duly and legally notified, was accordingly held at the Vestry of the Church in Chauncy Street, this afternoon, at four o’clock.

The meeting was called to order by the Clerk, who read a copy of the notice given, and was duly organised by the choice of Samuel H. Gookin, Esquire for Moderator.

Prayer was offered by the Pastor, Reverend Rufus Ellis.

Messrs. Messinger and Collamore were appointed a Committee to collect, sort and count ballots.

A ballot being taken for Clerk, George O. Harris was reported to be duly elected to that office, who then and there took the requisite oath, as follows,

Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Before me, this sixteenth day of

Suffolk S.S.

April A.D. 1867 personally appeared George O. Harris and made oath that he would truly and faithfully record all votes passed at any meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston and of the Standing Committee of said Corporation and otherwise faithfully perform all the duties of Clerk of said Corporation during the time he shall retain said office.

John Collamore Justice of the Peace.

The Chairman of the Standing Committee read and submitted to the meeting the Annual Report of this Committee to the Proprietors. On motion of Mr. Messinger it was Voted That the Report be accepted, recorded and placed on file.

[441] Copy of Report of the Standing Committee.

“Boston 16th April 1867.

The Standing Committee of the First Church would briefly report, That from the statement of the Treasurer it would appear that the funds of the Church is nearly exhausted, and that the requirements of the contractors for the new church are such that a sale of the present Church is rendered necessary at the earliest time possible, or it will be requisite that the Treasurer should be authorised to borrow under the direction of their Committee such sums as may be needed, until a sale of the Church is effected.

It will be remembered that at a Meeting of the Proprietors on the 29th June 1865 it was voted unanimously to sell the present Church, and build a new one, and a Building Committee consisting of the Standing Committee, and five other proprietors were appointed.

The Building Committee for reasons assigned did not contract for the New Church until the 12th Nov. 1866, but the work has progressed so rapidly, that immediate action in the matter of the payments must be taken.

Referring you to the reports of the Treasurer and the Building Committee for details, the Committee do not deem it necessary to make a more extended report at this time.

At a special meeting of the Proprietors on the 22d March 1867, it was Voted to raise the Taxes on the pews of the present Church 50 percent in order to meet the expenses of the present year, which we are sorry to say will not fully accomplish that object.

Respectfully submitted,

for the Standing Committee

(Signed) T. B. Wales, Chairman.”

The Treasurer, being called by the Moderator, read his Report of the ordinary receipts and expenditures for the Society, also a separate report of payments made on account of building the New Church.

On motion of Mr. Salisbury, seconded by Dr. Abbot it was Voted, The report of the Treasurer be, and hereby is, accepted and confirmed.

[443] Messrs. Collamore and Abbot were appointed by the Chair a Committee to collect, sort, and count votes for the members of the Standing Committee; on a ballot being taken, they reported the following gentlemen as receiving all the votes of the meeting, and they were accordingly declared as unanimously elected; to wit,

  • Nathaniel Thayer
  • Samuel H. Gookin
  • George W. Messinger
  • D. Waldo Salisbury
  • Samuel L. Abbot, M.D
  • George W. Wales
  • Turner Sargent

The Moderator then appointed the following gentlemen to serve as a Finance Committee, for auditing the accounts of the Treasurer for the ensuing year, viz. N. B. Doggett, J. P. Bradlee and Samuel H. Gookin. which appointments were confirmed by the meeting in the usual manner.

The Moderator then appointed the usual Committee on Donations and Charities, to consist of the following gentlemen, viz: Reverend Rufus Ellis, Messrs. William Everett, Horace Dupee, Edward R. Hall and Thomas Goddard; the meeting confirmed these appointments.

On motion of Mr. Collamore, seconded by Mr. Thayer,

Voted That the Salary of our Pastor be increased in the sum of $1500. for the present year, making it $5000. in all.

On motion of Mr. Collamore, seconded by Mr. Thayer

Voted That the salary of the Clerk be made $100. for the present year, and that he be paid by the Treasurer $50. in addition to his salary of last year, for clerical services rendered during that time.

[444] On motion of Mr. Thayer, seconded by Mr. Sargent

Voted That all the power and authority conveyed by the several votes of the Proprietors, at a Special Meeting held on the 29th June 1865, to the Building Committee then and there instituted, be and is now hereby confirmed and renewed.

On motion of Mr. Thayer, duly seconded

Voted That our Pastor, Reverend Rufus Ellis, be requested to invite (if he shall deem it expedient) the Society of the “Second Church,” under Reverend Chandler Robbins, to unite with this Society in religious services at our Church in Chauncy Street, during the closing of their Church in the summer months.

The Treasurer stated to the meeting that unless the Estate of this Corporation on Chauncy Street was sold within a few weeks it would be necessary to borrow money to meet the liabilities of the Corporation under contracts for the new building.

After some discussion of the subject, on motion, of Mr. Thayer, duly seconded, it was

Unanimously, Voted That the Standing Committee are hereby authorised, with full powers, to borrow through the Treasurer of this Corporation, such sum or sums of money as may be necessary, from time to time, for building the new church edifice, now being erected on the corner of Marlboro and Berkly Streets, and in fulfilment of contracts made and executed, or to be made and executed for that purpose.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[445] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Monday, April 22, 1867.

The Standing Committee consisting of Messrs. N. Thayer, G. W. Messinger Samuel L. Abbot, Samuel H. Gookin, D. W. Salisbury Geo. W. Wales and Turner Sargent, met at the vestry in Chauncy Street at 11 o’clock in the forenoon, agreably to previous notice given. All the members being present.

Nathaniel Thayer, Esquire was unanimously chosen Chairman of the Committee.

On motion, confirmed by the meeting, the Chairman appointed the following named gentlemen to serve respectively on the usual sub-committees, viz.

  • On Music,
    • Messrs. Abbot, Salisbury and Gookin.
  • On Repairs,
    • Messrs. Gookin, Thayer, Sargent and Wales.
  • On Sexton’s duties,
    • Messrs. Wales and Messinger.

On motion of Mr. Sargent, Messrs. Messinger, Gookin and Thayer were chosen to serve as a Committee with full powers to obtain information relating to a sale of the Church property on Chauncy Street.

On motion of Mr. Gookin, Messrs. Thayer, Wales and Sargent were chosen to serve as a Committee of Finance.

On motion of Mr. Gookin, duly seconded, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to borrow money for building the new church edifice, and to sign the notes of the Corporation therefor, approved by one or more of the Members of the Finance Committee, for any sum or sums, not exceeding in all one hundred thousand dollars. ($100000.)

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

[446] Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston Saturday, June 8, 1867.

A meeting of the Standing Committee was held this day, agreable to previous notice given, at the Office of Messrs. Ware and Van Brunt, Architects, on Tremont Street, at 4 o’clock P.M.

Present, Messrs. Thayer, Messinger, Wales and Sargent.

A communication from Reverend Rufus Ellis, our Pastor, was read, submitting an arrangement he proposed to make with Reverend Chandler Robbins of the 2d Church for the union of the two societies in religious services during the summer months.

On motion, duly seconded, it was

Voted That said arrangement be and hereby is fully approved by this Committee.

The Committee adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston January 30, 1868.

The Committee met this forenoon, in accordance with previous notice, at the Office of Nathaniel Thayer, Esquire, Room 62, City Exchange Building, at 10 o’clock.

Present, Messrs. Thayer, Messinger, Wales, Abbot and Gookin.

The Chairman stated to the meeting the amount expended for the new building, up to the present time, and the prospective needs for the same purpose.

On motion of Mr. Wales, seconded by Doct. Abbot, it was

Voted That the Treasurer be and hereby is authorised to borrow a further sum of money for building the new Church edifice, and to sign the notes of the Corporation therefor, approved by one or more of the members of the Finance Committee, for any sum or sums, not exceeding, in all, Fifty thousand dollars; say ($50000.)

[447] On motion of Mr. Wales, duly seconded, it was

Voted That a Committee of three be appointed by the Chair, with full power, to select and adopt a Collection of Hymns for the use of the Society. The following persons were accordingly nominated and the nomination confirmed by the unanimous votes of the meeting, viz.

  • Reverend N. L. Frothingham D.D.
  • Reverend Rufus Ellis
  • Samuel L. Abbot M.D.

On motion of Mr. Messinger, duly seconded, it was

Voted That a Committee of three be appointed by the Chair and requested to consider the adoption of a Liturgy in the devotional services at the First Church; to ascertain if they can obtain the consent of the Wardens of King’s Chapel for the use of the form now followed by that Society; and to report at the next annual meeting of the Proprietors.

Messrs. Geo. W. Wales, Nathaniel Thayer and Reverend Rufus Ellis were named to compose this Committee, and the nomination was confirmed by a unanimous vote of the meeting.

The Committee adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Meeting of the Standing Committee. Boston April 4, 1868.

The Committee held a meeting at 11 o’clock A.M. this day at the Office of Nathaniel Thayer, Esquire City Exchange Building.

Present, Messrs. Thayer, Messinger, Gookin and Abbot.

On motion of Mr. Messinger, it was

Voted That the Clerk be and hereby is requested to call a Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church to be held at the Vestry of their Meeting House in Chauncy Street, on Tuesday the 14th day of April current at 12 o’clock, noon—for the following purposes; by depositing a printed notice of the meeting in each pew on the Lord’s Day immediately preceding said meeting and by posting such copy on the principal outer door of the Meeting House seven days, at least, before the time of [448] holding said meeting.

First, To elect three persons to appraise the pews, in the Meeting House in Chauncy Street, in accordance with the provisions of the Thirty fifth Section of the Thirtieth Chapter of the General Statutes.

Second, To determine whether they will authorise the Standing Committee to sell by private or public sale the real estate of the Corporation situated on the westerly side of Chauncy Street in Boston.

The meeting adjourned, sine die.

George O. Harris, Clerk.

Special Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston April 14, 1868.

A Special Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, having been legally notified by the Clerk, according to the direction of the Standing Committee, was held at the vestry of their Meetinghouse, in Chauncy Street, this day, at 12 o’clock, at noon.

The Clerk called the meeting to order, at the stated time, and read the following warrant and return—to wit:

“To George O. Harris, Esquire Clerk of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston.

Greeting;

We, the subscribers, being the Standing Committee of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston request you to notify and warn the said Proprietors to meet at the vestry of the Meetinghouse, in Chauncy Street, in Boston, on Tuesday, the 14th day of April current at 12 o’clock, at noon, for the following purposes, namely;

1. To elect three persons to appraise the pews in accordance with the provisions of the thirty fifth section of the thirtieth chapter of the General Statutes.

[449] 2. To determine whether they will authorise the Standing Committee to sell by private or public sale the real estate of the Corporation situated on the westerly side of Chauncy Street in Boston.

And we request you to deposit a printed notice of this meeting in each pew on the Lord’s Day immediately preceding said meeting, and to post such copy on the principal outer door of the meeting house seven days at least before the time of holding said meeting.

Hereof fail not and make due return of this warrant with your doings thereon, at the time and place of meeting aforesaid.

(signed)

N. Thayer

S. H. Gookin

G. W. Messinger

S. L. Abbot

D. W. Salisbury

Geo. W. Wales

“Boston April 14, 1868. Pursuant to the foregoing request, and in conformity thereto, the Undersigned caused a printed notice of the required meeting to be posted on the principal outer door of the Meetinghouse, in Chauncy Street, on Sunday the fifth day of April current, where it continued until the day of the meeting, and on Sunday the 12th idem (being the Sunday next preceding the meeting) a printed copy of the same to be placed in each pew.

George O. Harris,

Proprietors Clerk.

Doct. Samuel L. Abbot was chosen a committee to collect sort and count the votes given at all the ballotings that may be taken at this meeting.

A ballot being taken for Moderator, the Committee reported, and it was thereupon declared by the Clerk, that the whole number of votes cast was eleven, all for Samuel H. Gookin, and accordingly, he is unanimously chosen Moderator of this meeting.

The Moderator stated the business before the meeting; and on Motion of Mr. Messinger, seconded by Mr. Thayer it was Voted That, whereas it is deemed necessary, for the purpose of building a new Meetinghouse, to sell the meetinghouse situated on the Westerly side of Chauncy Street, in Boston; we now proceed to the [450] choice, by ballot, of three disinterested persons to appraise the pews, under the provisions of the thirty fifth Section of the thirtieth Chapter of the General Statutes.

A ballot being taken for three Appraisers, the Committee reported that all the votes cast were for Albert Fearing, John Gardner and Henry P. Kidder, each of these gentlemen receiving fourteen votes, and they were accordingly declared, by the Moderator, to be elected as Appraisers.

On motion of Mr. Salisbury it was

Voted That the Clerk be requested to notify these gentlemen of their election.

After some conversation respecting the disposal of the real estate of the Corporation, on motion of Mr. Messinger, duly seconded, it was

Voted That when this meeting adjourns, it adjourn to meet at this place, on Tuesday next, April 21st, at half past three o’clock, in the afternoon.

The meeting then adjourned.

George O. Harris,

Proprietors’ Clerk.

Annual Meeting of the Proprietors. Boston Tuesday, April 21, 1868.

The Annual Meeting of the Proprietors of the First Church in Boston, havin