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1866–1867. 111 E. High St.
  • (Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie)

An African American Methodist congregation built this log and frame church in the immediate aftermath of the Civil War. In 1860, 10 percent of the population of Washington County was Black, with just under half enslaved. The congregation for Tolson’s Chapel included both the formerly enslaved and long-time free Black people. Recognizing the dire need for education, a teacher was hired, and the chapel used as a school for many decades, as public education opportunities for African Americans continued to be lacking. Starting in 2002, Friends of Tolson’s Chapel restored the building and its adjacent cemetery, both designated a National Historic Landmark in 2021.

Writing Credits

Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie



  • 1866

  • 2002

  • 2021

    Declared National Historic Landmark

What's Nearby


Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie, "TOLSON’S CHAPEL", [Sharpsburg, Maryland], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Maryland, Lisa Pfueller Davidson and Catherine C. Lavoie. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2022, 355-356.

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