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First Parish's Historical Stained Glass Treasures
Presented By Frank HutchinsMarch 6, 2016
First Parish Church
382 Walnut Street, Brookline
Dr. Francis Hutchins was the speaker. He gave an informal - and riveting - introduction to the stained glass heritage of First Parish. After his remarks, Frank answered questions and took the guests on a walking tour to observe each of the windows up close.
First Parish's twenty-one mostly American-made windows dating from 1880 to 1945 were created by Louis Comfort Tiffany, Sarah Wyman Whitman, Charles Connick and other important American artists in stained glass. Several strongly-contrasting styles are represented, including Modern Opalescent, Arts and Crafts, and Medieval Revival. Most of these windows relate directly to Brookline, including the window depicting Brookline's Revolutionary War heroes John and Hannah Goddard, two World War One memorial windows honoring Brookline servicemen, and the window donated by Brookline natives Amy Lowell, A. Lawrence Lowell, and Percival Lowell.
Dr. Hutchins, a Brookline resident since 1988, supervised the conservation of several of First Parish's stained glass windows. He also researched their history and prepared an illustrated guide. A long-time member of the Brookline Historical Society and of Brookline's First Parish, he chaired First Parish's 275th Anniversary observances in 1992. He has taught history and political science at Harvard University, been a member of Princeton's Institute for Advanced Study, and worked as an historical consultant and expert witness for the States of Connecticut, Maine, New York, Ohio, Rhode Island, and Vermont. He is the author of several books on the history of India and of the United States.
The 300th anniversary of First Parish Brookline will be celebrated in 2017. Raising funds for the restoration of the middle panel of the Sarah Wyman Whitman/Lowell Family window is an important goal of the anniversary committee.
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