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Mount Zion Baptist Church

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1883–1884, attributed to George W. Spooner and/or George A. Sinclair, builder. Later alterations. 105 Ridge St.
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)

Mount Zion Baptist Church played a central role in the formation of Charlottesville's African American community in the period after the Civil War. A group of former slaves established the congregation in 1867. The 1883–1884 brick structure replaced an earlier (c. 1875) frame church on the same site. Local lore holds that Spooner, a Charlottesville architect, designed the structure. In the Italianate idiom popular with Baptists after the Civil War, the church is relatively plain on the exterior with a dominant entrance tower and steeple and corbeled brick detailing at the eaves and in recessed panels on the tower. The interior is a large three-aisle space with galleries on three sides and some stock colored glass windows.

Writing Credits

Richard Guy Wilson et al.


What's Nearby


Richard Guy Wilson et al., "Mount Zion Baptist Church", [Charlottesville, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Virginia: Tidewater and Piedmont, Richard Guy Wilson and contributors. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002, 149-149.

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