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First Church of Christ, Scientist
First Church of Christ, Scientist
TitleFirst Church of Christ, Scientist
DescriptionPostcard of the First Church of Christ, Scientist at Ninth and Forest Streets
Historical ArticleThe First Church of Christ, Scientist, at Ninth and Forest streets, was the first of its denomination west of the Mississippi river.

Mary Baker Eddy established the Massachusetts Metaphysical college in 1881. Five years later a graduate of the school, Mrs. Emma D. Behan, came to Kansas City and opened an office in her home at 913 East Fourteenth street. The converts, mostly students and patients of Mrs. Behan, met weekly in her home in 1888.

Later Second and Third churches were formed (before 1900) and held services in various buildings. The Pepper building, Lyceum hall and Willis Wood theater were among those used.

In 1897 the three churches finally united under the Charter of 1890, and plans were made for building a church. Arthur E. Stillwell, of railway fame, was an active spirit in the building enterprise.

The stately early-Gothic stone structure, with terra cotta roofing and low, square towers, as pictured on the German-made post card, was built in 1898 at a cost of $67,000 and was considered one of the most beautiful in this part of the country.

At the dedication services--Christmas, 1898--a telegram was received from Mary Baker Eddy. It is still treasured by the present organization.

Early-day homes shown on Forest street are no longer standing, having been replaced by apartment houses. But the old church, mellowed by 72 years of uninterrupted services, still stands, in beautiful condition inside and out.

A Sunday school room was added to the south side of the structure when extensive repairs were made after a fire in 1910.

Kansas City Star
October 24, 1970
AuthorRay, Mrs. Sam (Mildred)
Item TypePostcard
CollectionMrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)
See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981
Local SubjectChristian Science Churches
First Church of Christ Scientist
Digital FormatJPEG
RepositoryMissouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
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