The Meetinghouse

The old Quaker Meetinghouse, built 1771. Uxbridge, Massachusetts.

They hold one service every year at the old meetinghouse. It’s the oldest meetinghouse in the country and most of the year it’s closed, although I’m pretty sure you can rent it for weddings, though I’m not sure how.

The meetinghouse is open on Thanksgiving morning and there is a Quaker service. The church is only slightly heated, just enough to make it possible to sit there for an hour and a half and unless the day is unusually warm, you need to wear your overcoat even during the service. It’s cold and the pews are hard, but it’s the perfect place to give thanks.

Besides the autumn poets sing,

A few prosaic days

A little this side of the snow

And that side of the haze.

A few incisive mornings,

A few ascetic eves, –

Gone Mr. Bryant’s golden-rod,

And Mr. Thomson’s sheaves.

Emily Dickinson

Categories: Photography, Poetry, Seasons

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2 replies

  1. Before I even saw the word Quaker, I knew this had to be colonial times! Wonderful picture:>) Of course, Emily Dickinson. . .what can I say. . .all-time GREAT!


    • We live 2 miles from the Rhode Island border. It’s a very Quaker area, an old area. The Blackstone Valley is an official “National Historic Corridor,” the birthplace of the American industrial revolution. We also proudly gave birth to American water and air pollution. We’re still cleaning up the mess, though the mills and factories have been gone for a hundred years. Our beautiful Blackstone River was until 30 years ago, one of the US’s top 2 or 3 most polluted rivers.It’s coming back. Still not safe for drinking or swimming, but the fish and birds are back and the air is breathable. I wrote a historical thing about the valley. I’ll have to rerun it. Once upon a time, this quiet valley was America’s industrial heart. Then the mills closed, the factories moved, the farmers went to Indiana, Pennsylvania or North Carolina, the factory workers went to Detroit or other places where they could find work, and the valley went back to sleep. We almost became a suburb of Boston (60 miles away), but along came the big recession, and now we’re just a bunch of small, semi-rural white picket fence communities. But beautiful!


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