Universalist Church, Bath, ca. 1910


Corinthian Hall at 906 Washington Street, later the Universalist Church, began as the home of the Bath Elocution Society in about 1840. Used as a clubhouse and Bath’s first theater, it also had a bowling alley in the basement and a dance hall on the first floor.

The Universalists raised funds for their first church building in 1837-1838 and moved to Front Street in 1839. Oliver Moses, attracted to the church’s desirable downtown location, purchased that building in 1860, tore it down, and constructed a business block, long known as the Church Block. The Universalists bought Corinthian Hall that year and had architect Francis Fasset remodel it for use as a church. The façade may have remained similar to the theater, or he may have added a false front with recessed entrance, colonnaded porch, and arched windows. Memorial stained glass windows were added in 1892.

The Universalists disbanded in 1946, and the Lincoln Lodge of Odd Fellows became the new owner. In 1962, the Bath Alliance Church purchased the building, razed it, and built a smaller brick church on the site, using five of the memorial windows in the new building. The memorial windows were auctioned off when the Beth Israel Congregation took over that building to create the Minnie Brown Center.

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