First Unitarian Church

Berkeley Street
Boston, Mass.

Year Built: 1865

Sturgis and Brigham submitted a design for this church but it was not selected. This is the earliest known design to which Brigham is known to have contributed. A write-up in the Architectural Sketch book indicates that the competition for this commission was conducted in 1864 and the design itself is dated 1865. The building was proposed to be built of Roxbury puddingstone and could hold about 1,000 persons. The Sturgis & Brigham design was not selected.

In a letter from Brigham to Sturgis in 1866 as the building was being constructed, Brigham complains that it appears the selected architect used Sturgis & Brigham's proposed roof design. This suggests that Brigham materially contributed to this design as surely in discussions with Sturgis, Brigham would not have taken credit for the design unless he had some part in it.

Before the firm of Sturgis and Brigham was formed, both worked in the office of Gridley J.F. Bryant.


• A Congregational Church, Architectural Sketch Book, January 1874, Vol. 1, No. 7, Plate 2, and ante page describing the competition and the proposed design.

• Letter from Charles Brigham to John Hubbard Sturgis, 1/26/1868, Sturgis Papers, Boston Athenaeum Library.


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