William Greenleaf Eliot Lecture

William Greenleaf Eliot Lecture 

An Event Sponsored by one of our supporting faith groups – See flier here!

Rev. Earl Holt, Minister Emeritus of First Unitarian Church of St. Louis, will give a lecture on the legacy of William Greenleaf Eliot on Wednesday, May 9 at 8 p.m. The free and open to the public talk will be at the First Unitarian Church, 5007 Waterman Blvd., St. Louis, MO.

Rev. Holt’s topic will be “Remembered and Forgotten: William Greenleaf Eliot and the Future of the Past.” The lecture will commemorate the 125th anniversary of Rev. Eliot’s death.

Rev. William Greenleaf Eliot came to St. Louis in 1834 to establish the first Unitarian church west of the Mississippi. From his pulpit and through his tireless service and sense of duty, he inspired his parishioners and others to establish many of St. Louis’s most significant and enduring cultural and academic institutions.

Eliot proposed and worked zealously for a property tax to establish the city’s public schools and served as president of the St. Louis Public School Board. He and his congregation founded the Mission Free School for children in distress, Mary Institute, and Washington University (originally called “Eliot Seminary”). He served the university as president and chancellor, in fact even when not in title. The St. Louis Art Museum had its beginnings in the university’s School of Fine Arts.

Rev. Eliot’s life is a story of faith, of character, of selfless duty. From that inauspicious November day in 1834 when William Greenleaf Eliot first set foot on its riverfront, St. Louis would never again be the same.

There will be a reception following the lecture. Rev. Holt will be available for further discussion and to sign his republished biography “William Greenleaf Eliot: Conservative Radical.”



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