Bell Street Chapel

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Bell Street Chapel
Bell Street Chapel Providence RI front view.jpg
Bell Street Chapel
Bell Street Chapel is located in Rhode Island
Bell Street Chapel
Bell Street Chapel is located in the US
Bell Street Chapel
Location Providence, Rhode Island
Coordinates 41°49′7″N 71°26′12″W / 41.81861°N 71.43667°W / 41.81861; -71.43667Coordinates: 41°49′7″N 71°26′12″W / 41.81861°N 71.43667°W / 41.81861; -71.43667
Built 1875
Architect Walker, William Russell
NRHP Reference # 73000065[1]
Added to NRHP March 14, 1973

Bell Street Chapel is an historic Unitarian Universalist chapel church located at 5 Bell Street in Providence, Rhode Island. This is just off Broadway in the part of the city referred to as "Federal Hill."[2] The church is a member congregation of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA).


The chapel was built in 1875 by architect William Russell Walker at the behest of James Eddy. Eddy was a wealthy engraver and art dealer who advocated a theology that was unusual for its time. He had a private chapel built on the land adjacent to his property, hoping that he might be able to find some people who agreed with his theology.[2]

The chapel sat largely unused until Eddy's death in 1888. His will created an endowment aimed at keeping the chapel in use well into the future. That endowment is still active today. Anna Garlin Spencer, a Providence philanthropist and philosopher, was asked to spearhead the creation of a new congregation using the chapel. She remained there ten years and was ordained by the congregation as the first female minister of any denomination in the State of Rhode Island.[3]

At the present time, Rev. Margaret Weis serves as developmental minister. Services begin every Sunday morning at 10:00.[4]

Bell Street Chapel was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 
  2. ^ a b Bell Street website Archived June 3, 2013, at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Transcendentalists: Anna Garlin Spencer.
  4. ^ Bell Street Governing Board
Another View

External links[edit]