Fonds F0504 - Central United Church fonds

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Identity area

Reference code



Central United Church fonds


  • 1883-1985 (Creation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

4 m of textual records. -- 220 photographs. -- 96 architectural plans. -- 4 audio cassettes. -- 1 video cassette

Context area

Name of creator

Administrative history

The first Methodist church in Calgary, Alberta was built of logs in 1877 at 6th Avenue and 6th Street SE and sold in 1880. A wood and canvas church was built later east of the Elbow River and was moved to 8th Avenue and 4th Street SE in 1883. A larger frame building was built at 7th Avenue and 1st Street SE in 1884. A new brick church was built in 1889 at 6th Avenue and 2nd Street SW. The first resident ministers were James Turner (1883-1884) and Joshua Dyke (1884-1886). Sunday school classes began in 1884 with James A. Lougheed as superintendent (1884-1888). The Methodist Ladies' Society led by Mrs. W.H. Cushing, and the Blue Ribbon Temperance Society both began in 1885. For a number of years the congregation and the Presbyterian congregation operated a common Sunday school and choir. By 1904 Calgary Methodist Church was a large and important congregation which had a Woman's Missionary Society, a Young Men's Club (Men's Own), and an AOTS (As One That Serves) men's club. To accommodate the growing congregation a new church, Central Methodist, was built at 7th Avenue and 1st Street SW with a seating capacity of 1,300 and dedicated February 1905. Its first minister was George W. Kerby (1903-1911). The church was gutted by fire in 1916, but refurbished and reopened in 1917. The church's name was changed to Central United Church at the time of church union in 1925. A Christian education wing was added in 1948, and a new chapel in 1952. By 1953 Central United was the largest United Church congregation in Canada. For further information see Calgary Central United Church, They Gathered at the River / Central United Church : Calgary, 1975.

Archival history

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

Gifts of Central United Church, Mrs. J.D. May and John A. Brown, 1962-1988.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

The fonds consists of records related to church administration, including minutes, correspondence and annual reports (1883-1985); Sunday School (1905-1967); women's groups including Ladies Aid Society and Woman's Missionary Society (1896-1967); men's groups including AOTS and Young Men's Club (1903-1962); memberships (1886-1971); weekly calendars / church bulletins (1912-1976); newsletters (1887-1975); newspaper clippings (1883-1975); History Committee for the church centennial (1974-1975); programs and memorabilia (1897-1979); architectural plans for the church building (1916-1955); financial records (1913-1948); and photographs of the church, members and events ([ca. 1884]-1975. Includes architectural plans for the Moravian Church (1912-1913).

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling


System of arrangement

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

No restrictions on access.

Conditions governing reproduction

Language of material

    Script of material

      Language and script notes

      The material is in English.

      Physical characteristics and technical requirements

      Finding aids

      Allied materials area

      Existence and location of originals

      Existence and location of copies

      Digital content is available

      The quarterly board minutes (1883-1914) are also available on microfilm.

      Related units of description

      Other Central United Church records are held by the Provincial Archives of Alberta.

      Related descriptions

      Notes area


      Title based on contents and provenance of records.


      Some of NA 656 are copy negatives.


      There are five negatives included in PA 3097 which have not been assigned NA #s.


      Microfilm-Central United

      Alternative identifier(s)

      Access points

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      Genre access points

      Description control area

      Description identifier

      Institution identifier

      Rules and/or conventions used


      Level of detail

      Dates of creation revision deletion

      Thursday, May 10, 2018




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