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Bethlehem Church

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1844–1845, Jeremiah Clemens. U.S. 11 at VA 798
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Virginia Department of Historic Resources)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • (Photograph by Mark Mones)

This church has a rich history predating its construction. The Smith Creek Friends began meeting in a building at this site as early as 1738, but by the early 1800s, many of these Quakers had moved west. In 1844, Jacob Martz deeded the “Old Meeting House,” which was “crumbling with age,” to the Bethlehem Church trustees, who hired local stonemason Jeremiah Clemens to build a stone church. During the Civil War it was used as a battlefield hospital. This small, rectangular, gable-end church with double front doors is typical of the modest meetinghouses that dotted the county in the nineteenth century. Although many frame churches survive, this is one of the few limestone examples, illustrating the persistence of the local masonry tradition in the area.

Writing Credits

Anne Carter Lee


What's Nearby


Anne Carter Lee, "Bethlehem Church", [Broadway, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Virginia vol 2

Buildings of Virginia: Valley, Piedmont, Southside, and Southwest, Anne Carter Lee and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2015, 94-94.

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