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Eastham History & Genealogy

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Federated Church of Orleans Collection

The Federated Church of Orleans can trace its history back to 1646. In that year, seven households from Plymouth Colony formed a Congregational Society and built their first meetinghouse-fort in what was then known as Nauset, now called Eastham. In 1718, the town and Congregational Society built a new meetinghouse structure on the present-day site of the Federated Church of Orleans. This structure remained until 1829, when it was replaced with the present-day building.

In 1838, a group of members left to form the Universalist Society. Over 100 years later, in 1939, the Universalist and Congregational Societies united to form the Federated Church of Orleans. The united Church continued to use the 1829 building, which had been expanded and renovated in 1889. In 1968, the Federated Church of Orleans saw its final renovation, with the addition of classrooms, offices, and meeting rooms.

The Federated Church of Orleans is a distinct point of pride, both for the congregation and for the towns that once created Nauset/Eastham. The Federated Church is now an Open and Affirming Congregation affiliated with the United Church of Christ (UCC) and the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA). The Church celebrated its 350th anniversary in 1996, and in 2018 celebrated the 300th anniversary of moving to the current building site.

Digitized Records: