Guide to the Records of the First Universalist Society at Hartland, Vermont, 1802 - 2002Manuscript MS-947

Full Finding Aid


Guide to the Records of the First Universalist Society at Hartland, Vermont, 1802 - 2002

Call Number:

Manuscript MS-947

Collection Dates:

1802 - 2002

Size of Collection:

3 boxes (1.2 linear ft.)


First Universalist Society of Hartland, Vermont. (1802-1962). The collection contains record books, published histories, and financial records documenting the founding of the Society, including early membership, religious ceremonies, proceedings and operation of the congregation.

Access to Collection:


Use & Access

The materials represented in this guide may be accessed through the Rauner Special Collections Library at Dartmouth College. Rauner Library is located in Webster Hall. The materials must be used on-site and may not leave Rauner Library.

Rauner Special Collections Library is open to the public and in most cases no appointment is necessary. The exception is in the case of materials stored off site for which there may be a delay of up to 48 hours in retrieval. Please consult the Access to Collection statement below or contact Rauner Reference.

Access to Collection


Publication & Use

These materials may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.).

Introduction to the Collection

The records of the First Universalist Society of Hartland, Vermont consist of record books chronicling the development of the Catholic Benevolent Society into the Universalist Society. They include lists of meetings and members, religious ceremonies, specifically the baptisms, confirmations, weddings, and deaths of its members as well as records regarding the reorganization of the church, meeting minutes, annual reports, treasurer's notes, and histories of the church.


The First Universalist Society of Hartland was established at Hartland Three Corners by the Catholic Benevolent Society in 1802. This religious group, which would later change its name to the Universalist Society (1822), called Hosea Ballou to be its first minister (1803-1809). Initially, the Universalists shared the Union Meeting House in the center of town with the local Congregationalists, but in 1822, they built their own meetinghouse at Four Corners. The Universalist's current meetinghouse was built in 1854; its construction caused a major rift amongst members, and the Church at Four Corners faced its first member loss. In the mid-nineteenth century, the Universalists faced further decline that would last well into the twentieth century, as mainline Protestants came to embrace many Universalist positions. In the 1920's, the Church at Four Corners formed an alliance with the Congregationalists of what was termed the "Brick" church at Three Corners, and the two groups, while separate organizations, came to share one minister. Following World War II, however, the Congregational Brick Church joined the United Church of Christ in forming the Unitarian Universalist Association after the merging of the American Unitarian Association and Universalist Church of America (1961).

Box & Folder List

Box: 1, Dates: 1802-1946

Access Restrictions


Box Contents

  • Folder: 1, Administrative record book: Catholic Benevolent Society, 1802-1854
  • Folder: 2, Administrative record book: Church Records, 1878-1946

Box: 2, Dates: 1854-1962

Access Restrictions


Box Contents

  • Folder: 1, First Universalist Society administrative record book, 1856-1896
  • Folder: 2, First Universalist Society administrative record book, 1896-1961
  • Folder: 3, Loose materials tipped into record books , circa 1850-1960
  • Folder: 4, Centennial and Bicentennial celebration attendees, 1902, 2003

Box: 3, Dates: 1855-2002

Contains published programs and histories of the Hartland Universalist Society, 1802-1902 and 1902-2002. Also includes deeds, the 1919 will of Mary Marcy, committee reports, and financial reports.

Access Restrictions


Box Contents

  • There is no folder listing for this box.

Finding Aids