Thursday, November 8, 2018

Peachblossom Meetinghouse

Just as I've always admired St. John's in the Valley [here and here] for its Gothic loveliness, I've always appreciated Peachblossom Meetinghouse for its elegant simplicity.

This little hexagonal structure was built on the banks of Peachblossom Creek near Easton, Maryland, in 1880 to serve as a meetinghouse for four local congregations: Swedenborg, Lutheran, Methodist, and Church of the Brethren. It has been known by several names: Union Meetinghouse for its multi-denominational origins, Peachblossom Meetinghouse for its location, and Round Top Meetinghouse for its shape. The four congregations initially shared the space, each laying primary claim one Sunday a month, but by 1903 they had all built, purchased, or leased buildings more conveniently located, and Round Top (now owned exclusively by the Brethren) fell into disuse.

Disuse, fortunately, did not mean neglect. The Brethren have kept up on routine maintenance and repairs, both before and after the meetinghouse's relocation in 1940 to accommodate the construction of US Highway 50, the Eastern Shore's main arterial highway. A cast-iron marker notes its place in Maryland history, and the Brethren once again hold services here on special occasions.

[Photos by Mark & Jessa.]