Ashmont Universalist Church

Image: No. 2632 Ashmont Universalist Church, 22 Bushnell Street

Located at 22 Bushnell Street at the corner of Lombard Street, the Ashmont Univeralist Church building is now used as a private residence.

Known as Ashmont Hall this bungalow-type building housed “elegant social evenings,” children’s dancing classes, a neighborhood kindergarten and a private school program.  Beginning about 1894, it was utilized as the Ashmont Universalist Church. The Ashmont Universalist church was located at the corner of Lombard and Bushnell Streets behind All Saints. The building has been converted into a residence.

Although Tucci says the Ashmont Universalist Church was probably designed by Edward Freeman, he shows a picture of the First Baptist Church at the corner of Ashmont and Adams Streets labeled as the Ashmont Universalist Church. It seems possible that Edward Freeman designed the First Baptist Church instead of the Ashmont Universalist.

“This parish [Ashmont Parish] sprung into existence through the earnest efforts of the Rev. Chas. Conklin, State Secretary. The first business meeting was held Mar. 14, 1902, when some forty people met and drew up and signed an agreement of association founding a corporation, the name of which was to be ‘The Ashmont Universalist Parish of Boston.’ The first religious meeting was held in Ashmont Hall, corner of Bushnell and Lombard streets, July 26, 1892. This property was later purchased by the society and here Rev. Chas. Conklin preached and assisted the society until Nov. 7, 1902. At this time [1892?] the Rev. L.O. Williams was called and labored faithfully with this parish nine years, resigning Dec. 7, 1901, going to Stoughton, Mass. From this time the pulpit was filled with supplies until Sept. 1, 1902, when Reverend Merrill C. Ward was called and gave himself devotedly to the work until Sept. 1, 1903, when he was called to Southbridge. At this period of the parish’s history dark clouds of despair hung heavily over the people, but the faithful father of the parish, Rev. Chas. Conklin, rallied the drooping spirits of the people and, inspired with hope and success, the hall was renovated throughout and made into a beautiful chapel with all the necessary appointments needed in any church. In March, 1905, the Rev. Harry Adams Hersey came to us and is giving his earnest efforts to the building up of a strong and united church, and so forgetting the things that are behind we are ‘pressing toward the mark of our high calling in Christ Jesus.’

For more information, consult:

Leavitt, P.M. Souvenir Portfolio of Universalist Churches of Massachusetts. Boston: The Massasoit Press, 1906)


Posted on

April 14, 2020