One of the most sophisticated of mid-eighteenth-century Virginia churches, Abingdon should be compared to nearby Christ Church, Lancaster (see entry, above). The church has a Latin-cross plan, a form first used in Virginia at Bruton Parish church in Williamsburg in the 1710s and repeated in nearly a dozen other parishes over the next fifty years. The dimensions are extraordinarily large, 80.5 feet east to west and 75.5 feet north to south. All four arms have the same width, 35.5 feet on the outside, which on the interior helps to minimize the isolating effects possible with narrower wings. The walls are laid in a Flemish bond with glazed headers, and all three of the doorways exhibit high-quality molded and rubbed bricks. The west doorway, with its pilasters and segmental pediment, is frequently illustrated in publications. The three entrances retain their original, paneled folding doors. The window frames are decorated with fluted pilasters rather than the more typical molded architraves.
Closed with disestablishment, the building suffered. The church was reconstituted in 1826 and then damaged during the Civil War. Repairs were undertaken at various times. Hence the dating and originality of portions of the interior are controversial. The most notable early features include the galleries in the north and
The churchyard walls on the east, west, and portions of the south date from the eighteenth century. The gates are new. Among the tombs are several eighteenth-century examples for the Burwell and Page families. Many of these were moved in the twentieth century from sites on local plantations, such as nearby Rosewell. Nearly all the gravestones were fabricated in England, since Virginia possessed neither the appropriate carving stone nor the carvers.