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Portland Friends Meeting

Portland Friends Meeting Records

1973-2010
2 boxes 1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 902 P678

The current Portland Monthly Meeting has its origins in two different monthly meetings taking place in close proximity to each other that later merged into what is now the Portland Monthly Meeting. Friends’ meetings in Portland, Maine began in 1752, and by 1790, joined the neighboring Falmouth Monthly Meeting. In 1850, the group built a new meetinghouse on Oak Street in Portland, and started becoming known as the “Oak Street” meeting. Meanwhile, the other of two originating meetings began when a second meetinghouse was built in 1855 on Forest Avenue to house the Deering Preparative Meeting that eventually became the Forest Avenue Monthly Meeting in 1934. The two separate monthly meetings continued in Portland until 1974 when they merged into one: the current Portland Monthly Meeting.

The current collection consists of materials dating from just before the start of the 1974 merger. Newsletters make up the largest portion of the collection, and have extensive information about the meetings’ activities, including (in some years) biographies of various members. There are newsletters from most years between 1973-2010. Minutes, primarily from the late 1970s and the late 1980s, make up the next largest portion of the collection. In addition, there is a smattering of committee reports and membership directories mostly from the mid-1990s. Material predating the 1974 merger can be found at the Maine Historical Society.

Background on Portland Friends Meeting

The current Portland Monthly Meeting has its origins in two different monthly meetings taking place in close proximity to each other that later merged into what is now the Portland Monthly Meeting.

Friends’ meetings in Portland, Maine began in 1752, and by 1790, joined the neighboring Falmouth Monthly Meeting, just north of Portland. A Portland worship group continued until 1796, alternating over the years between being a worship group and a preparative meeting. From 1976-1842, it existed as a preparative meeting and in 1842-1855 as a worship group. In 1850, the group built a new meetinghouse on Oak Street in Portland, and started becoming known as the “Oak Street” meeting. From 1855-1860, it reverted to a preparative meeting; from 1860-1875, it developed again into a worship group. In 1875, it again reverted to a preparative meeting and continued that way until 1974.

Meanwhile, the other of two originating meetings began when a second meetinghouse was built in 1855 on Forest Avenue to house the Deering Preparative Meeting (Deering was a separate neighboring village of Portland until 1899 when it was annexed by Portland and is now an area of Portland). The Deering Preparative Meeting eventually became the Deering Meeting for Worship in 1887, the Forest Avenue Meeting for Worship in 1903, and finally the Forest Avenue Monthly Meeting in 1934.

The two separate monthly meetings continued in Portland until 1974 when they merged into one: the current Portland Monthly Meeting that meets at the Forest Avenue location. The Forest Avenue Monthly Meeting had been affiliated with the Falmouth Quarterly Meeting since 1934, and with the merger of the two meetings in 1974, the newly-formed Portland Monthly Meeting retained this membership. Since then, two worship groups have developed under the care of the Portland Monthly Meeting: a worship group on neighboring Peaks Island started in 1982 and lasted for ten years, and the Kennebunk Worship Group started in 1987.

Scope of collection

The current collection consists of materials dating from just before the start of the 1974 merger. Newsletters make up the largest portion of the collection, and have extensive information about the meetings’ activities, including (in some years) biographies of various members. There are newsletters from most years between 1973-2010. Minutes, primarily from the late 1970s and the late 1980s, make up the next largest portion of the collection. In addition, there is a smattering of committee reports and membership directories mostly from the mid-1990s. Material predating the 1974 merger can be found at the Maine Historical Society.

Inventory

Minutes
1973-2010
Portland Monthly: Minutes (contains only Jan., Feb., Nov.)
1973
Box 1: 1
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Jan., Jul., Nov., Dec.)
1976
Box 1: 2
Portland Monthly: Minutes (contains only Jan.-May, Aug.)
1977
Box 1: 3
Portland Monthly: Minutes (contains only Oct., Nov., Dec.)
1978
Box 1: 4
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Jan., Apr., Sept., Oct.)
1979
Box 1: 5
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Aug., Oct.-Dec.)
1980
Box 1: 6
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Jan., Feb.)
1987
Box 1: 7
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Jul.)
1988
Box 1: 8
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Jul.)
1989
Box 1: 9
Portland Monthly: Minutes (lacking Aug.)
1990
Box 1: 10
Portland Monthly: State of the Society (lacking 1983-1986)
1982-1993, 2005
Box 1: 11
Correspondence
1994
Portland Monthly: Queries
1994
Box 1: 12
Committees
1994-1995
Portland Monthly: Letter from Released Friend Support Committee
1994
Box 1: 13
Portland Monthly: Meetinghouse Committee Reports
1994-1995
Box 1: 14
Portland Monthly: Nominating Committee-Committee and Officers Lists
1994-1995
Box 1: 15
Finance and Property
1993-1996
Portland Monthly: Financial Reports and Correspondence
1993-1996
Box 1: 16
Vital Records and Membership
1983-2010 (bulk1991-1999)
Portland Monthly: Memorial Minutes (Bowman, Wehmeyer)
1983, 2010
Box 1: 17
Portland Monthly: Membership Directories
1991-1994
Box 1: 18
Portland Monthly: Membership Directories
1997, 1999
Box 1: 19
Portland Monthly: Membership Directories
2001
Box 1: 20
Newsletters and Publications
1973-2010
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (contains only Jan., Feb., May, Jul., Oct., Dec.)
1973
Box 1: 21
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jan., Apr., Aug., Nov.)
1976
Box 1: 22
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking May, Jul., Sept., Oct., Dec)
1977
Box 1: 23
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (contains only Jan., Oct., Nov.)
1978
Box 1: 24
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
1979
Box 1: 25
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug., Oct.-Dec.)
1980
Box 1: 26
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (contains only Apr., May)
1983
Box 1: 27
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jan., Feb., Jul.)
1987
Box 1: 28
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Oct., Nov.)
1988
Box 1: 29
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jan., May, Aug., Dec.)
1989
Box 1: 30
Portland Monthly: Newsletters
1990
Box 1: 31
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
1991
Box 1: 32
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jul.)
1992
Box 1: 33
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jul.)
1993
Box 1: 34
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jul.)
1994
Box 2: 1
Portland Monthly: Newsletters — Religious Education News
1994
Box 2: 2
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
1995
Box 2: 3
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
1996
Box 2: 4
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jun.-Aug.)
1997
Box 2: 5
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
1998
Box 2: 6
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
1999
Box 2: 7
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jan., Feb.)
2000
Box 2: 8
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
2001
Box 2: 9
Portland Monthly: Newsletters
2002
Box 2: 10
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug., Nov.)
2003
Box 2: 11
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
2004
Box 2: 12
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Aug.)
2005
Box 2: 13
Portland Monthly: Newsletters(Jul., Aug., Oct.-Dec.)
2006
Box 2: 14
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Jun., Aug.)
2007
Box 2: 15
Portland Monthly: Newsletters
2008
Box 2: 16
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (lacking Mar.-May, Sept.)
2009
Box 2: 17
Portland Monthly: Newsletters (contains only Jan., Apr., Jul., Aug., Sept., Oct.)
2010
Box 2: 18
Miscellaneous
1990
Portland Monthly: “Reminiscing About NEYM in its History”
1990
Box 2: 19

Administrative information

Access

The collection is open for research.

Provenance

Gift of the New England Yearly Meeting of Friends Records, March 2016.

Related Material

This collection is part of the New England Yearly Meeting Records.

Current contact for the meeting

Portland Friends Meeting

Processing Information

Processed by I. Eliot Wentworth, October 2018, and Susan E. Creighton, July 2019.

Language:

English

Copyright and Use (More information )

Cite as: Portland Friends Meeting Records (MS 902 P678). Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries.

Search terms

Subjects

  • New England Yearly Meeting of Friends
  • Portland (Me.)–Religious life and customs
  • Quakers–Maine
  • Society of Friends–Maine

Contributors

  • Portland Friends Meeting [main entry]

Genres and formats

  • Minutes (Administrative records)
  • Newsletters

Link to similar SCUA collections

Gift of New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, April 2017

Subjects

Portland (Me.)--Religious life and customsQuakers--MaineSociety of Friends--Maine

Types of material

Minutes (Administrative records)Newsletters

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