Background on Building Universalist Church in Atlanta

Excerpt from Letter from the Southern Missionary, Tennessee Division.

Atlanta—The Annual Church Meeting

It was held on January 17th. The attendance was larger than at any previous assembly of the kind, and the reports from all departments, which were formally presented, were encouraging. The Finance Committee showed, that for all purposes during the year, the church and auxiliary bodies had raised and paid out, two thousand three hundred and twenty five dollars and ninety cents; that all bills were settled and a small sum remained in the treasury. Would you like to see the items? Here they are:

On Pastor’s Salary


Hall Rent




Special Meetings


Church Building Lot $1,250.00
Interest at Bank


Missions (State, Gen Convention, incl Japan)


Two-Cents as week for Mission




Sunday School Supplied $30.00
Y.P.C.U. Expenses


Blackboard Sign, Etc. $12.00
Printing of Paper and Expense of Lecture Course


Total $2328.90

The statement that the Central Union had in October last, sent on from the “4 to 1” fund, twenty-five hundred dollars, plus the interest on the note given by the Atlanta Board of Directors, and that the church lot was now free of all encumbrance, was received with cheers and a vote of thanks was tendered.

The Woman’s Centenary Association, which has voted $200.00 for the Atlanta Church, received a like expression of appreciation. The new Board of Directors were instructed to choose a Building Committee and prospects of the erection of the edifice were set forth.

The Church Edifice

It was January 24th that letters from President Fowler and Secretary Demarest of the General Convention were received, telling that the Official Board of that Convention had voted twenty-five hundred dollars, to be paid in five annual installments, toward the Atlanta Church.

This most generous and timely action, which must certainly a deep impression upon all our young people, settled two questions; viz., that the edifice would be built, and the Y.P.C.U. Convention would be held therein July 11-18.

So many are writing me, asking what we are doing, how we are doing, and why we are so long doing it, it may be well to state these few facts from my diary:

January 30th. Learn from Mr. D. A. Helmich, of Birmingham, Ala., (who had kindly offered to donate plans and specifications of church) that business engagements would not allow him to take up Atlanta plans for some weeks. It was deemed inexpedient to wait and Atlanta architects were asked to make competitive sketches of the proposed building.

February 6th. Committee accepts sketches drawn by Mr. W. F. Denny, and he is employed to make plans and specifications in full.

February 26th. Plans go to contractors.

March 6th. Bids of contractors opened and all rejected because too high. Changes made in plans to lessen the cost of building, and decision reached to hire our own foreman and build by day labor.

March 8th. Mr. H. W. Veazey, of Harriman, Tenn., engaged as foreman.

March 12th. Lot surveyed, and under sunny skies, at 3:40 P.M., I throw up two shovelfuls of earth, say, “Laus Deo” and so the work begins. (Archivist: Laus Deo – Praise be to God)

The basement walls are now nearly completed, all lumber, brick, and slating bargained for, and matters of windows, pews and lighting are being negotiated.

Nothing will be done about heating the church until after the Convention. We will not even have a suggestion of heat about the edifice while you are here.

I hope you will all hasten to send to headquarters your “two cents a week” or more, so that the work may go forward to beautiful completion and be ready for your coming.

Some one will wish to present the church with a section of one of the large windows. Send twenty-five dollars, stating what emblem is desired, if you have a choice, and your name shall be beautifully inscribed to abide perpetually in the light.

 Beyond the Ordinary

December brought a course of lectures by Rabbi E B. M. Brown, which netted a goodly sum for the Building Fund.

January, introduced Mrs. C. A. Quinby, who spent a week among us to the delight and profit of all. Her influence in public discourse, and private conference, was unifying, quickening, uplifting. She is one of the young, and will remain so.

February, took me to Rev. J. A. Murphy, the colored minister of Bartow, Ga., who has a church organized on our faith and practice. That visit has been reported to Dr. Demarest. Rev J. H. Whitmore, of Boston, my long time friend, spent a few days in Atlanta, and placed our mission under lasting obligations by his kindly ministries.

March, Rev. Frank Fay Eddy and wife, of Maine, are among our visitors. His sermons will not be forgotten.

Three valuable members received into church fellowship, making five since the beginning of the year; two children christened.

Our offering for Japan on Sunday last amounted to ten dollars.

Dr. Shinn will be with us to lay the corner stone in the near future.

H. McGlauflin.

Atlanta, Mar. 20, 1900

Source: Onward found in Google Books, Vol. VII, No. 14, April 7, 1900, Page: 109