Three blocks south of the Old Town Visitors Center is the home of the Old Presbyterian Meeting House, founded in 1772. The church was destroyed in a fire in the 1820s, but the restorated sanctuary sets the stage for an appreciation of the spirit of a small group of Christians worshipping in the 18th centruy Revolutionary era as well as the early 19th century when America was being built into a young nation. The central pulpit highlights the centrality of preaching for Presbyterians, and the two organs (chancel and balcony) symbolize the importance of song to their liturgy. This is where the second memoral service for President George Washington (the other at Mount Vernon) was held because access to Christ Church was impossible because of muddy lanes. Visit the courtyard to find the Tomb of the Unknown Revolutionary Soldier and the tombstones of a number of prominent Alexandrians. Note the unusual steeple without its spire, another sign of the independent attitude of the Scotch Irish who founded the Meeting House. Stop in the office in the white building south of the sanctuary to talk with the curteous and informed staff and check out the Geneva Bible on display in the library. The best time for a visit is Sunday morning when you can worship, talk to the members over coffee and get a fuller perspective on how a congregation that worships in an "Old' building attempts to be relevant to a "New" world.
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