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Old Chapel

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1793. Bishop Meade Rd. at Lord Fairfax Hwy., 3 miles south of Berryville

Constructed of local limestone, this austere one-story three-bay rectangular building is one of the earliest Episcopal church buildings west of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Built under the patronage of Colonel Nathaniel Burwell of Carter Hall in Millwood, it replaced an earlier 1740s log church that stood nearby. The chapel served the Episcopal families in the southern and central portion of Clarke County, many of whom were descendants of prominent Tidewater families. Noted Episcopal bishop William Meade began his ecclesiastical career as a lay reader in this building. The interior of the chapel retains most of its original woodwork including the pulpit and box pews. The cemetery contains the graves of Burwell; Edmund Randolph, governor of Virginia and first attorney general of the United States; novelist John Esten Cooke; many Confederate soldiers; and members of early Clarke County families. Although the congregation left for a new church in Millwood in 1834, the Burwell Trust maintains the chapel and adjoining cemetery and services are held here twice a year.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Anne Carter Lee
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Citation

Anne Carter Lee, "Old Chapel", [Boyce, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—, http://sah-archipedia.org/buildings/VA-02-CL12.

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