Observations, Photos

Little White Churches

For years, I’ve noticed and enjoyed these examples of Methodist meeting houses dotting the Delaware landscape.  Built across the peninsula in the 19th century, they are virtually identical in size, shape, and design.  Called the Greek Revival architectural style, they reflect the plain aesthetic promoted by the early Methodists.  Communities and the state are working to put some of the best examples onto the National Register of Historic Places. Before building these early chapels, the Methodists met in houses, barns, under trees, and on river banks. Delaware is also home to one of the oldest surviving churches – Barratt’s Chapel — built by and for the Methodists in the U.S.

Listening to Jessye Norman singing gospel standards while on a leisurely sunny afternoon drive from DC to Rehoboth, I was inspired to stop and snap these photos.

Todd's Chapel, just off Route 16 west of Greenwood.

St. Johnstown Church, just off Route 16 east of Greenwood.

Sand Hill Church, on Sand Hill Road in Sussex County.