Episcopal Diocese of Virginia
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History

 

Parish History

Our Historic Church

The Trinity Episcopal Church building was built in 1857 in the town of Washington, Virginia. It is a “Country Gothic” style church with an exterior originally of board and batten and later, covered in pebble-dash stucco in 1924. James Leake Powers, the master craftsman hired to build the church in 1857, had worked with Thomas Jefferson in building the University of Virginia. The bell tower and vestibule were added in 1905, while the beautiful stained glass windows depicting the life of Christ were added and dedicated in 1937. The windows over the altar were moved to Trinity from Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Sperryville in 1982 when that church was sold.

Bromfield Parish

Bromfield Parish was established much earlier than this church building. It was partitioned from St. Mark’s Parish of Culpeper by an Act of Assembly in 1752. It included Rappahannock County, Madison County, and a small part of Culpeper County. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Woodville Virginia was one of three existing well-established churches in Bromfield Parish. The others were Piedmont Church in Madison and a church in Wolftown Virginia, Madison County. St. Paul’s church building was destroyed in the tornado of 1929, which swept through Woodville destroying many buildings and homes. The cemetery is still used today by our Trinity Church families.

Early Days

Many years before Trinity was built, a colonial days "chapel of ease" existed near Washington at the Slaughter property in Tiger Valley. A memorial marker was dedicated in 1983 to honor this chapel called Strother Chapel and the house nearby that was used as a rectory for the circuit preachers. A journal from the Diocese in May 1858 listed 7 communicants at Trinity Church. “They have built a very neat and comfortable house of worship at a cost of about $1800.00 which sum has been raised mainly amongst themselves” is quoted. It was noted that St. Paul’s of Woodville with 10 communicants contributed $100.00. The Rev. William T. Leavell was the rector at the time of the construction of the Trinity Church building. He recognized a need for a church in the northern end of the Parish where as yet none had existed. By 1871, there were 25 communicants listed at Trinity and the Rev. J. G. Minnigerode of Culpeper served as rector.

Parish Hall Addition

In 1956, after years of raising funds, the parish hall building was added. Mrs. William Stuart started the fund with $600.00 donated in memory of her husband. A plaque can be seen in the parish hall today. Charles Hawkins, a well-known local builder, was the contractor. Miss Margaret Mason, a former member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, left the parish $20,000.00 which was used to build the parish hall building at Trinity. The building was enlarged in 1985 and the Bromfield Meeting room was added at this time.

Trinity House

As need for more space became necessary, in 1998, the house across from the church was purchased and renovated. Called Trinity House now, it houses our rector's office and the church office. The Episcopal Church Women have offices and storage space in Trinity House.

Trinity Gardens

A small memorial garden was first developed in 1990 in the garth between the church building and parish hall. In 1999, the Trinity Church Garden Guild began transforming the side of the church facing Middle Street into a beautiful new landscaped garden complete with walking paths and benches.