Springfield, in 1838, numbered about 9000 souls, and prided herself justly, upon her public spirit, her progress, her business enterprise. Communication with the outside world was made h)y stage-coaches, on horseback or by cumbersome old steam boats that plied up and down the river. Business houses were confined mostly to Main Street, whose muddy condition constantly excited private and public comment. There was a large vacant ht)t, at the southwesterly corner of Main and Bridge Streets, where were held baseball games, picnics, firemen's musters, and an occasional circus. There was no library building, no charity organization, no Y. C. A., no Roman Catholic Church or resident priest.
         On October 28, 1838, the rays of a great light penetrated the gloom of Christ Church's history. The Rev. Henry W. Lee was sent by the Board of Missions of Massachusetts, to assume charge of the Springfield Parish, contributing $400 toward his salary. Like his father, Col. Roswell Lee, possessing rare administrative ability, love for his fellow men, and active interest in their physical and spiritual welfare, he picked up all the loose threads of Episcopalian activities, wove them into a firm, beautiful fabric, and because our church has had a continuous existence since the days of Mr. Lee, he justly deserves the honor of being called the founder of Christ Church.
         Henry W. Lee was born in Hamden, Connecticut, July 29, 1815. He was made deacon in Grace Church, New Bedford, May 27, 1838, and ordained priest in St. Ann's Church, Lowell,


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