Patricia Palermino Studio

Patricia Palermino Studio

The Old Presbyterian Meeting House by Pat Palermino

Monday, April 29, 2013

Behind-the-Scenes

The Old Presbyterian Meeting House in Alexandria, Virginia, dates from the early eighteenth century. Scottish Presbyterians were among the early European settlers of Northern Virginia and were involved in establishing Alexandria as a port in 1749. The Society of Presbyterians worshiped publicly in the city from the 1760s, and the congregation’s first installed minister arrived in 1772. The history of the congregation is summarized in the Chronology and History sections of this Web site, and the Meeting House itself and other facilities belonging to the congregation are discussed in the Facilities section. Among other services that George Washington attended here was one conducted by the Rev. Dr. James Muir for the National Day of Solemn Humiliation, Fasting, and Prayer in 1798. Alexandria’s memorial services for George Washington in 1799 were held in this sanctuary, and the church bell tolled in mourning during the four days between his death and burial. The Tomb of an Unknown Soldier of the American Revolution is located in the burying ground adjoining the Meeting House.

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