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First Universalist Church records

Identifier: 00189

Scope and Contents

The First Universalist Church of Lansing records consist of accounting ledgers from both the church and the church school, annual reports, scrapbooks and newspaper clippings, histories of the church, parish and collection records, and treasurer's reports. The records range in date from the establishment of the church in 1852 to 1971, and include the early years of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lansing. Among the notable items are a photocopy of the 1852 charter and a scrapbook of histories of the church dating back to 1848.


  • Creation: 1852 - 1971


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from this collection must be obtained from University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University.

Historical Note

The first Universalist church in the United States, located in New Jersey, was created by John Murray in 1770. The Universalist movement spread first along the Atlantic seaboard and then west across the country. Universalists, a liberal sect of Christianity, did not adhere to any one creedal statement; instead they believed in one God and that every religious tradition was based upon one universal truth.

Conflicting dates place the creation of the First Universalist Church of Lansing between 1848 and 1852. The congregation first met in the Michigan Senate Chamber in Lansing until the first Universalist Church was dedicated on October 14, 1863 on Grand Avenue. The location of the Church changed several times; in July 1896 it moved to the northeast corner of Ottawa and Capitol Streets, in 1946 it moved to 831 North Washington, and finally in late September 1957 it merged with the East Lansing Unitarian Fellowship and moved to Allegan Street.

This merger resulted in a name change, Universalist-Unitarian Church of Greater Lansing; then in a 1961 decision made by the Council of Liberal Churches that fused together all Unitarian and Universalist Churches across the nation. To comply with the newly created Unitarian Universalist Association, the Lansing based Church changed its name once again to the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lansing.


2.5 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials



Arranged alphabetically by subject.

Legal Status

Donor(s) have transferred any applicable copyright to Michigan State University but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright was not transferred. Copyright restrictions may apply. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

First Universalist Church Records
4 Published And Cataloged
K. Kuszynski
December 2005
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives and Historical Collections Repository

Conrad Hall
943 Conrad Road, Room 101
East Lansing MI 48824 US