Mary Keane Memorial Chapel // 1930

Located in the Enfield Shaker Village in Enfield, New Hampshire, this stunning chapel building clearly depicts the significance of religion and faith in the Shaker Community. The church structure however, was built after the Shakers sold the property! In 1923, after 130 years of farming, manufacturing, and productive existence, declining membership forced the Shakers to close their community and put it up for sale. In 1927, the Shakers sold the site to the Missionaries of Our Lady of La Salette, an order of Catholic priests, ensuring the continued tradition of spiritual, communal life on the site. The La Salettes also continued the very active agricultural use of the site as well as establishing a seminary and high school here.

The Mary Keane Chapel dates from the post-Shaker era at the Church Family site. Designed by Donat R. Baribault of Springfield, Massachusetts, the chapel was built for the Brothers of the La Salette Order with funds donated by their benefactress, Mary Keane. Ms. Keane, who had inherited a fortune from her uncle, pledged that fortune to assist the La Salette’s in the establishment of a French language seminary in Enfield. Her wealth helped purchase the former Shaker community, renovate the building for La Salette’s use, and build the Mary Keane Chapel.

The property was purchased again in 1985 and has operated as the Enfield Shaker Museum starting in 1986. The museum offers educational exhibits and programs designed to invite active participation in learning about the extraordinary people who once lived and worked here.

Chapel in the Pines // 1889

The Chapel in the Pines church had its origins in the growing desire by many late-19th century New Englanders to move away from the strictures of fundamentalist religion. A Universalist Society was formed in Eastham on the Cape for the erection of a new place of worship. Local families and esteemed citizens pooled resources and constructed the building themselves over five months, under the direction of an Elkany Hopkins (though sources state he died in 1885). The Victorian Gothic church has a certain flair with the turned posts at the entry, bell tower, and roof cresting. After serving various congregations and uses (including once as a coffee shop), the building was purchased by the Nauset Fellowship. In 2017 and 2018, the Chapel underwent a renovation with money raised from the community along with two grants from the Town of Eastham’s Community Preservation Act funds.