First Unitarian Church (Somerville, Massachusetts)
First Unitarian Church
|NRHP Reference #|||
|Added to NRHP||September 18, 1989|
The First Unitarian Church is a historic church building at 130 Highland Avenue in Somerville, Massachusetts. The stone church was built between 1875 and 1899 for a Unitarian Church congregation. It was designed by Hartwell, Richardson and Driver, and is a good example of Richardsonian Romanesque design. The building was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989. As of 2009 the building houses the Mission Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ.
Description and history
The First Unitarian Church building is located on the south side of Highland Avenue, at its western corner with Trull Lane, about one block west of Somerville's cluster of civic buildings on Central Hill. The church is a handsome stone structure, with a tall and steeply pitched gable roof, and a square tower at its right front corner. Entrances are located on the north-facing front facade at either end of the gable, which has a bank of five rectangular stained-glass windows below three tall round-arch stained glass windows in the gable. The tower rises through two levels to a belfry which has tripled round-arch louvered openings on each side, with a fourth stage housing a multi-faced clock with stone piers at the corners rising to pyramidal caps. The tower is capped by a slate pyramidal roof.
The church was built in 1892 to a design by Hartwell, Richardson and Driver as the fourth sanctuary for a congregation organized in 1844. The building is a fine local example of the Richardsonian Romanesque style for which its architects were well known. The building now houses the Mission Church of Our Lord Jesus Christ, an Apostolic Pentacostalist church.