A ceremony celebrating Stone’s Chapel being named to the National Register of Historic Places will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at 4138 Crums Church Road in Clarke County.
The church, which traces back to the late 1700s when the area was part of Frederick County, was named to the register on Aug. 5, 2019, but the COVID-19 pandemic delayed a public acknowledgment of the milestone, according to Larry Hardesty, who is president of the Stone’s Chapel Memorial Association Inc., which owns the property. Just prior to being named to the National Register of Historic Places, the chapel was placed on the Virginia Landmarks Register on June 20, 2019.
The association, which is dedicated to preserving and restoring the church and its cemetery, has owned the property for 10 years, Hardesty said. It received the site as a gift when a buyer could not be not. This followed the church shuttering in 2000 because its congregation had dwindled.
Twice a year, in September and December, the association hosts events at the church.
According to the Virginia Department of Historic Resources, the existing brick building dates to 1848 and was established by a multi-denominational community. It replaced a now-vanished wooden church.
During its history, Stone’s Chapel “has been the home to both German- and English-speaking parishioners served by Lutheran, German Reformed and Presbyterians ministers,” the VDH states, evoking early Virginia history when less affluent Protestants denominations had to pool their resources.
In 1886, Stone’s Chapel Presbyterian Church was established and the German Reformed congregation dissolved, as did the Lutheran congregation by 1899.
The oldest marked burials in the church cemetery date to 1816. Hardesty said some of his ancestors are buried there.
According to the VDH, the church and its cemetery reflect the heritage of the German and Scots-Irish settlers who moved into the area from Maryland and Pennsylvania following the end of the American Revolution.