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Christian Association records

Identifier: 6S-Christian Association

Scope and Contents

Collection includes records of the Christian Association of Wellesley College, dating from 1884-1952. Collection has been arranged into five series. Series I. Administrative records (1884-1949) includes versions of the group’s Constitution, records of religious courses and studies, records of the Forum on Religion events, prayer meetings and services, involvement with the Young Women’s Christian Association, calendars per semester, meeting minutes and reports, a register of members, reports of the Secretary and Treasurer. Includes one sub-series of Committee records, including accounts, reports, and meeting minutes from the Religious Committee, Extension Committee, General Aid Committee, Committee on Religious Meetings, Finance Committee, Week of Prayer Committee, Missionary Committee and Mission Study Committee. Series II. Annual Reports (1905-1943) includes includes Annual Reports published by the Christian Association with updates on activities. Series III. Students' Handbooks (1900-1952) includes Students’ Handbooks published by the Christian Association. Series IV. Houghton Memorial Chapel Fund Association (circa 1895) includes includes meeting minutes and a ledger with financial records. Series V. Missionary Society records (1876-1884 and undated) includes includes society reports and membership information.


  • 1876-1952


Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. To make an appointment to view materials, please contact the Archives staff by email at or by phone at (781) 283-3745.

Conditions Governing Use

The Wellesley College Archives welcomes researchers to use materials in the public domain, to make fair use of copyrighted materials as defined by copyright law, and to request permission to use works whose copyright is held by Wellesley College. All materials from the Archives, regardless of copyright status, should be attributed to the Wellesley College Archives, Library and Technology Services when cited, quoted, or reproduced.

Biographical / Historical

The Christian Association was the earliest organization open to the entire college. The Christian Association was officially formed in 1884, following the merger of the Temperance Society and Missionary Society which had been formed in the college’s first years. Membership in the Association was non-denominational. In 1905, the Association was invited to join the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA) but did not because at the time this would have meant restricting membership to Evangelical denominations; they later did join the YWCA in 1913 and did not impose restrictions. The Christian Association brought lecturers to speak on campus, and raised support for missionary work. The Association hosted preachers on Sundays, attended a Christian Association Conference in New York, and organized service activities and fundraising campaigns for a variety of social concerns. In 1914, the Christian Association had 1,297 members. Weekly prayer meetings were held, as well as Bible study groups. During World War I, the Association fundraised and made supplies for war relief. Circa 1946, a faculty-student committee reviewed the role of the Christian Association in the community, and proposed the establishment of the Wellesley College Community Chapel in partnership with a Service Organization. (See President’s Report 1947-1948). These organizations were created in in the 1948-1949 school year, and the Service Organization was more successful than the Community Chapel over the following few years, but the Community Chapel gained its footing and served as an umbrella organization for other religious clubs. (See the 1950-1953 President’s Report). The Community Chapel was later called the Chapel Organization. This group declined circa early 1970s.

[Information from: Glasscock, Jean, and Katharine Canby Balderston. Wellesley College, 1875-1975: a Century of Women. Wellesley College, 1975. Pages 76, 203-204, 210, 223-224.]


2.8 Linear Feet (7 boxes)


Collection has been intellectually arranged into five series: Series I. Administrative records (1884-1949), Series II. Annual Reports (1905-1943), Series III. Students' Handbooks (1900-1952), Series IV. Houghton Memorial Chapel Fund Association (circa 1895), and Series V. Missionary Society records (1876-1884 and undated). Collection is physically maintained in original order.
Wellesley College. Christian Association. Christian Association records, 1876-1952: a guide
File-level description by Student Assistant Sophia Pechaty, collection-level description by Natalia Gutierrez-Jones, Project Archivist.
December 12, 2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Wellesley College Archives Repository