The Federal Street Church was established in 1727 by a congregation of Scots-Irish Calvinists who met in a barn prior to the construction of the first wooden structure in 1744. While originally known as "The Church of the Presbyterian Strangers", it was renamed as the Federal Street church following its use as the meeting place for Massachusetts ratification of the United States Constitution in 1788. As a result of the growing prosperity of the church and increasing crowds under Senior Minister Dr. William Ellery Channing, who served in the position from 1803 to 1842, a new meeting house was constructed in 1809, possibly the impetus for the donation of the silver goblets offered here.
E. Alfred Jones in The Old Silver of American Churches (1913) notes that the Federal Street Church additionally had a pair of canns with identical engravings to those found on the present lot, all of which are illustrated in Plate XXX. Like the cups offered here, the canns were unmarked, but Jones dated all four to circa 1810. The pair of canns were sold in these rooms, 18-19 January 2002, lot 327.
Also sold in these rooms as Property from the Arlington Street Church, 18-19 January 2002, were two pairs of silver alms dishes, mark of Joseph Foster, circa 1805, engraved Church in Federal Street, lots 325 and 326, as well as a pair of silver alms dishes, mark of Benjamin C. Frobisher, 1834, engraved Congregt. Church in Federal Street May 1834, lot 329.