American-French Genealogical Society - Woonsocket, Rhode Island
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member 401Photos
N 42° 00.447 W 071° 30.703
19T E 292002 N 4653655
Quick Description: The American-French Genealogical Society shares the former First Universalist Church building with the Veterans Memorial Museum in Woonsocket, RI. The shooting location is the east corner of the intersection of Earle and Snow Streets, looking west.
Location: Rhode Island, United States
Date Posted: 5/16/2022 3:21:40 PM
Waymark Code: WM16694
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member rjmcdonough1
Views: 4

Long Description:
The American-French Genealogical Society shares the former First Universalist Church building with the Veterans Memorial Museum in Woonsocket, Rhode Island.

THEN PHOTO Source: National Register of Historical Places Registration Form, First Universalist Church; Section 9 - page 43; Figure 12 - "Photograph of the First Universalist Church following the completion of the 1957 addition. Undated, c. 1957 - First Universalist Church Archival Collection, Uncatalogued, American-French Genealogical Society."

NOW PHOTO taken 21 April 2022, 12:01 PM.

The shooting location for both photographs is the east corner of the intersection of Earle and Snow Streets looking west. The building and its surroundings are relatively identical across the 65-year time span. Notable, but subtle, differences:
- The cross has been removed from the steeple
- Evergreen shrubs removed along Earle Street façade
- Metal fencing removed from the property's corner, but still in place to the northwest along Earle Street
- Wood shingles have been replaced by horizontal siding on the house northwest of the building along Earle Street
- Ground floor windows replaced with glass block
- Mature tree no longer exists southwest of the building along Snow Street
- Signage for current occupants added to the Snow Street exterior

ABOUT: "Built in 1924 and enlarged in 1957, it is a good example of 20th-century Gothic Revival architecture. The congregation for which it was built was established in the 1820s, in part through the efforts of Hosea Ballou, an influential early Universalist minister who also had business interests in Woonsocket." (Wikipedia) It is covered in light-colored brick with an ornate double-door entryway on Earle Street.

With its origins dating from 1977, the AFGS moved into the First Universalist Church in November 1989, renting 3,000 square feet of the building's lower level. Church membership declined, the congregation disbanded, and the AFGS purchased the property for $100,000 in November 2007. That allowed the organization's expansion to 19,000 square feet over three floors. The Veterans Memorial Museum, situated in a 2,300 square foot auditorium-style space at the top floor of the building, has been a tenant since November 2015. An extensive list of repairs and renovations has been undertaken by the current owners since 2007.

Year photo was taken: c. 1957

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