History of Christian Science in Northampton

A summary of the history of the founding of First Church of Christ, Scientist, Northampton (original article below)

Christian Science first became known in Northampton by a case of healing that happened in 1885. A student of Mary Baker Eddy, teacher and founder of Christian Science, then taught and established a healing practice in the city. By the end of the 19th century, a small band of students of Christian Science held weekly meetings. In the spring of 1898 the first public meetings were held, and by November permanent public services were established. They instituted a Sunday School, conducted Wednesday evening testimony meetings, and opened a Christian Science Reading Room to the public, which functioned as a lending library and a bookstore for Christian Science literature.

College students had become interested in the meetings, particularly students from Smith College, and they took an active part in events. In the winter of 1902, the group found larger quarters; in the summer of 1904, they formally organized themselves into the Christian Science Society of Northampton. The generous financial support of the Smith College students, as well as that of friends from within and without the community, was invested enthusiastically into efforts to bring healing to the sick and to those in need of release from human misery of all kinds.

On November 4, 1906, the Society voted to organize as a church. First Church of Christ, Scientist, Northampton was incorporated on January 16, 1907. Just three months later, desiring a home of its own and more spacious quarters, the church voted to purchase a desirable piece of property in the center of the city. Excavation began and the cornerstone was laid on August 31, 1907. The building was completed by the end of winter, and the first service, which was well attended, was held on March 22, 1908. Services have been held there ever since.