The Blair Congregational Church is in the National Register of Historic Places.

Our sanctuary was dedicated in November of 1874.  Blair newspapers report activities of  the Blair Library and Lecture Association  being held here in the 1870s.  Similar community service functions have continued throughout our history.

Documentation of the congregation from its inception still exists.  The first Church Register contains many interesting facts about how the church began.  Click here to see some of them.
This sketch of the original building was made by Alton Larsen for the centennial of the church in 1974. 
This photo from about 1913 shows the unpaved streets, the monument in the center of the intersection, and the doorway on the south side of the church.  This doorway was in the south room that was added to the church in 1884.  (Photos courtesy of Nathan Krämer.)
This picture from the southwest corner clearly shows the church, raised to provide a basement and the choir loft added behind the altar on the west side.  These modifications came in 1908.
This contemporary picture of the church, mostly grayed out, shows the addition at the southwest corner completed in 1999 which contains a new entrance, an elevator, and other renovations.
Beautiful stained glass windows have been installed as memorials, etc.  See the window page for additional pictures.
In 1979 the building was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Nebraska Historical Marker – Congregational Church of Blair

Religious institutions have played an important role in the history of Nebraska.  During the frontier period, churches fulfilled both the spiritual and social needs of the early inhabitants.  The Congregational Church was one of Nebraska’s pioneer denominations.  The Reverend Reuben Gaylord brought Congregationalism to Washington County in 1856 and the Church operated an early institution of higher learning, the “Nebraska University” at Fontenelle, 1858-1872.

The Congregational Church of Blair was organized with eight communicants on February 10, 1870, less than a year after John I. Blair auctioned the original town lots a few blocks north of this site.  For a time, the Reverend Marshall Tingley, who had come from Sioux City, conducted services in the courthouse or in private homes.

On November 22, 1874, a 28 by 40 foot sanctuary characteristic of the Carpenter-gothic style of architecture, was dedicated on this site.  Additions and improvements have occurred throughout the years but the original structure, along with many interior furnishings, has remained in use for more than a century as a center for worship and fellowship.  The style and simplicity of this pioneer Congregational Church provides a fitting memorial to Washington County’s religious heritage.