First Congregational Church of Chelsea, photo submitted 1981
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First Congregational Church of Chelsea
121Middle Street, Chelsea - Washtenaw County
Property Type church
Historic Use RELIGION/religious facility
Current Use RELIGION/religious facility
Style Romanesque
Architect/Builder Sidney J. Osgood
Narrative Description The First Congregational Church is a nearly square-plan auditorium church building with stone-trimmed, red brick walls and an exterior that is Romanesque in inspiration. The building comprises an integrated gable-roof auditorium and hip-roof fellowship hall/office sections. The church is dominated by a square-plan, campanile-like bell tower. Built on a raised fieldstone foundation and with load-bearing brick walls, the church faces south on East Middle Street in a primarily residential area near downtown Chelsea.
Statement of Significance The Congregational Church of Chelsea is a well-preserved example of the church architecture of Grand Rapids architect, Sidney Osgood, who was known for his designs for Protestant congregations. An example of church architecture influenced by Romanesque and Italian design, the building is a prominent one in the village of Chelsea. In addition, it is home to one of the village's oldest congregations.
Marker Name FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH
Marker Text FIRST CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH Vermont Congregationalists organized a church in Sylvan Township in 1849. In 1852 they built the first church in the village, here on land donated by Chelsea founder Elisha Congdon. When that building burned in 1894, John Foster of Chelsea built the present church, designed by Grand Rapids architect Sidney J. Osgood. Dedicated the following year, the church reflects Romanesque and Italian design.
Period of Significance 1895
Significant Date(s) 1895
Registry Type(s) 04/14/1997 Marker erected
11/16/1995 State Register listed
Site ID# P104