The Archives at Eden Theological Seminary collects, preserves and makes available the historical records and manuscripts related to Eden Theological Seminary and the Evangelical Synod of North America, a predecessor denomination of the United Church of Christ.
Location and address
The Archives are located on the lower level of the S.D. Press Education Center on the Eden Theological Seminary Campus.
Archives at Eden Theological Seminary
475 E. Lockwood Ave.
Webster Groves, MO 63119
Archivist at Eden
Hours, Access & Services
The archivist is normally available in the archives on Mondays and Thursdays, 8:30 a.m. to noon whenever the seminary is open and may be consulted by telephone, mail, and email. Access to the archives is by appointment only. Please contact the archivist.
- Materials must be used on site.
- Photocopying of archival material is permitted if the original is in sound condition. Photocopies are 10 cents per page.
- Use of the archives is free of charge. Monetary donations are welcomed.
The Evangelical Synod of North America (ESNA) Collection
The Evangelical Synod of North America was founded in 1840 as Deutscher Evangelischer Kirchenverein des Westens (German Evangelical Church Society of the West) in Mehlville, Missouri, near St. Louis. It merged with the Reformed Church in the United States in 1934 to form the Evangelical and Reformed Church, which in turn merged with the General Council of Congregational Christian Churches to form the United Church of Christ in 1957.
The ESNA Collection is comprised of the records of the Evangelical Synod of North America from 1840 to 1934, and includes records, manuscripts, publications, photographs and artifacts relating to:
• Historical antecedents
• Pastors, lay ministers, and denominational leaders
• Church governance, including districts and general conferences
• Denominational ministries, including education, publication, mission, specialized work and charities
• Denominational institutions
• Foreign missions
The archives continues to collect records and information about United Church of Christ congregations and institutions originating in the ESNA to present.
The Eden Theological Seminary (ETS) Collection
The ETS Collection is comprised of materials relating to the faculty, students and staff of Eden Theological Seminary during its history in three different locations: Marthasville, Missouri, 1850-1883, Wellston, Missouri, 1883-1924, and Webster Groves, Missouri, 1924-present. The collection includes documents, papers, manuscripts, publications, photographs and artifacts pertaining to:
• Institutional development
• Academic programs
• Faculty and students
• Buildings and grounds
Inquiries about student academic records should be addressed to the Eden Seminary Registrar’s Office.
Sources for congregational history and genealogy
The Archives has the following sources for those doing parish or family history research:
The Archives has the records of some United Church of Christ congregations, most of which were founded by the Evangelical Synod of North America in the St. Louis metropolitan area, Missouri, and southern Illinois.
Most church records held by the archives have been microfilmed and are available for research at the St. Louis County Library History and Genealogy Department. The library staff will also do lookups. Call (314) 994-3300, ext. 2070 or contact the library by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Please provide the name of the person, the name of the church, and the specific record you are looking for. Church records usually include baptisms, confirmations, marriages, and deaths. The Archives accepts requests for lookups in church records not held by St. Louis County Library.
Congregation history files
The Archives maintains files for most congregations with roots in the Evangelical Synod. Contents of files vary, but typically include written histories, membership directories and other materials of general historical interest.
Clergy biography files
The Archives can provide at least basic biographical data and lists of congregations served for most pastors in the Evangelical Synod of North America.
Other archives related to the United Church of Christ
14 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 0210
Holds records of the Congregational Church and the later Association of Congregational Christian Churches from the 17th to the 20th centuries. The collection includes the records of many United Church of Christ congregations originating in the Congregational Church, especially in New England.
Elon University Archives
100 Campus Drive
Elon, NC 27244
The Elon University Archives holds records for the southern branch of the Christian Church, which merged with the Congregational Church in 1931 to form the Association of Congregational Christian Churches.
Evangelical and Reformed Historical Society
555 W. James Street
Lancaster, PA 17603
Holds the records of the German Reformed Church, 1725-1934, and of the Evangelical and Reformed Church, 1934-1957. The collection includes the records of many United Church of Christ congregations originating in the German Reformed Church (before 1934) or Evangelical and Reformed Church (after 1934), especially in Pennsylvania.
United Church of Christ Archives
700 Prospect Ave.
Cleveland, OH 44115
Preserves the official denominational records of the United Church of Christ but has no records of congregations.