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Saturday April 19, 2014
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From Church to Fraternity

 

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meanwhile, is holding services in temporary quarters on Platt Rd. while members decide what to do next.

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This is the church's second move; the first move was of the building itself. It originally stood on South University, where the Law Quad is now.

In 1888 the Christian Women's Mission Society of Michigan offered to pay for a church building for the Disciples of Christ in Ann Arbor, using a bequest from Sarah Howley Scott of Detroit. (The "Memorial" in the name recognized her.) Finished in 1891, the church was designed by Detroit architects Malcomson and Higginbotham in the then-fashionable shingle style, with a fieldstone base and red slate siding. Forty-one people made up the first congregation, of whom thirty-five were students.

An interest in social issues defined the church from the beginning. During World War I, the congregation set up a workshop to make garments, blankets, and knitted goods for refugees overseas. According to a history written for the building's centennial in 1991, "[t]here were sewing machines and cutting tables installed and women and girls from every church in town and many who were from outside the churches worked at the church and took garments home to make."

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