First Presbyterian Church of Blissfield, photo submitted 1976
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First Presbyterian Church of Blissfield
306 Franklin Street, NW corner of Maple Street, Blissfield - Lenawee County
Property Type church
Historic Use RELIGION
Current Use RELIGION
Style Greek Revival
Significant Person John Montieth
Narrative Description The First Presbyterian Church of Blissfield is an L-shaped, single-story, frame Greek Revival structure covered in clapboard siding, standing on a raised brick foundation. The front-gable roof is dominated by a four-sided steeple and belfry and features cornice returns. A subsidiary ell is topped by hip, gable, and sloped roofs. The facade is fronted by a wide, two-door entrance flanked by two Gothic lancet windows.
Statement of Significance The First Presbyterian Church of Blissfield is the only building in Michigan closely associated with John Montieth, the first Presbyterian minister of Detroit's English speaking residents and the first president of the University of Michigan. The sanctuary of the church was completed and dedicated in 1849 during Montieth's tenure, due largely to his fund raising efforts. In 1883 the sanctuary was moved and raised to its current position. An addition, larger than the original church, was constructed in 1953 which substantially changed its character and appearance.
Marker Name First Presbyterian Church
Marker Text FIRST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH This church was organized in 1829, one of the oldest Presbyterian groups in the state. The sanctuary, completed in 1849, is largely the work of the Reverend John Monteith, who preached here 1845-1855. A graduate of Princeton Seminary, he came to Michigan in 1816. In that year he founded the first Protestant society in Detroit. In 1817 he became the first president of the University of Michigan. After his service in Blissfield, he retired from active ministry.
Period of Significance 1826-1865
Significant Date(s) 1849, 1883
Registry Type(s) 10/16/1966 Marker erected
09/03/1971 National Register listed
06/11/1965 State Register listed
Site ID# P23955