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Mt. Calvary Baptist Church, Orange, Virginia


11229 Kendall Road

Orange, Virginia

After the Emancipation of Orange County, the Negro had no place to worship and no land on which to build a place to praise God. The first place of which we have any record was a tobacco barn on old Dr. Johnson’s farm, better known as the Swollbe Farm. The pastor was Rev. Phillip Johnson, called Old man Phil, to distinguish him from Little Phil, who later became a minister.

Rev. Phillip Johnson, by some means, came in possession of a large tract of land, beginning at the bend of the Clifton Road and Hawfield Farm. This tract of land runs to a point about where Hopewell Baptist Church now stands, then owned by the Tylers. (The Negroes began to settle on the Tyler’s land and built the first of the communities somewhere near the present site of Hopewell Baptist Church).

After much debate with their parent church, Hopewell, in the month of June, (the year uncertain), Rev. Barnett and about sixty persons marched down the mountain to build their first church in what was then Nason’s Post Office. This soon became too small, therefore, they built another directly across from where Tucker’s Store use to stand.

By this time, the community had grown so large, the second church would not hold them; so, they began to look for another site on which to build. The trustees were instructed to purchase an acre of land from Douglas Carter. The record shows that the sale price was $8.00.

They soon began building the present church led by Thomas McIntosh, who became the second pastor. This church has had fifteen pastors.

*cemetery across road from church

Contributed by Irene Spotswood


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