Nassawaddox Meetinghouse

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Date: [unknown] [unknown]
Location: Nassawaddox, Northampton County, Virginia, USAmap
Surname/tag: Quakers
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Nassawaddox Meetinghouses

Quakers were meeting in Nassawaddox, probably in private homes, as early as 1658 when Henry Vaux was arrested for having the Quaker missionary William Robinson stay in his home.[1] A meeting house came in to use prior to 1660.[2] Some say that Levin Denwood provided the land for said meetinghouse.[1]

"A second meetinghouse, erected at some unknown time, was built at Nassawaddox. In 1689 George Brickhouse, whose wife was named Hannah, gave a tract of land to his daughter Anne, but made exception of 'one Acre whereon the meeting house standeth which I freely give to the People called Quakers forever.'"[3]

History of the Nassawaddox Monthly Meeting

Nasswaddox's organizational ties were with the Maryland General (Yearly) Meeting and Eastern Shore Quarterly Meeting. In 1681, Richard Moore reported to the General Meeting for Nassawaddox (Accomack) Meeting "that he hoped they were in a growing state." The meeting also sent representatives to the General meeting in 1689 and 1695. For a time Accomack and Northampton County Quakers were part of one Monthly Meeting which also included Somerset (Maryland), but the organizational arrangement changed when Muddy Creek and Nassawaddox became the "Lower Monthly Meeting."[4]
By 1699, traveling friends were finding that Nassawaddox Meeting was not doing well. It was speculated that marrying out was partly to blame but could also be due to members moving on to Maryland where there was less persecution. By 1702, the report to the Maryland General Meeting indicates that Nassawaddox was just "a little handful."[5]
According to the 17 October 1711 Maryland Yearly Meeting minutes, some were present from the Nassawaddox Meeting and said first day meetings continued to be held.[6] By 1724, "the Constant meeters are but few."[7]
In 1729, with little to no participation in the Yearly meetings, representatives collected the records of the Monthly and Quarterly Meeting which could be located and placed them in the hands of William Walters[sic] at Annemessex in Maryland.[8] Following Waters death in 1733, the records were to be placed in the custody of Third Haven Monthly Meeting but never arrived. It was reported in 1879 that the records were missing and, as of Aug 2002, have not been recovered according to a Maryland State Archives article.[9]

Spelling Variations

Nassawaddox is not an easy word to spell under the best of circumstances. Accents, phonetic spelling, and transcription errors have led to a large variety of extant spelling which should be researched when looking for records:

Meeting Houses in Virginia about 1678

"The names of places and Friends in America, where John Boweter was received and had meetings and service for the Lord in the gospel of peace, the following in Virginia are mentioned :

  1. James River at Chuckatuck Eliz. Outland.
  2. Pagan Creek - - - Wm. Parretts, Wm. Bodilie.
  3. Southward ... Edward Perkins.
  4. Nansemon .... Matthew Atkinson.
  5. Accomack.
  6. Pongaleg by Accomack shore.
  7. Pooomock Bay.
  8. Annamesiah ... Ambrose Dickson.
  9. Moody Creek in Accomack - Qeorge Johnson.
  10. Savidge Neck - . - Robert Harris.
  11. Nesswatakes - - - - George Brickhouse.
  12. Ocahanack ... Jonas Jackson.
  13. Moody Creek ... John Parsons.
  14. Annamesiah - . - George Johnson and George Wilson."[18]


  1. 1.0 1.1 Carroll, Kenneth L. "Quakerism on the Eastern Shore of Virginia." The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol 74, no. 2, pgs 170-189 (1966): pg 171; digital image, JSTOR.com (http://www.jstor.org/stable/4247203 : accessed 3 February 2018).
  2. Carroll, pgs. 175-176.
  3. Carroll, pg 178.
  4. Carroll, pg 178-179.
  5. Carroll, pg 182.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Carroll, pg 183.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Carroll, pg 185.
  8. Carroll, pg 186.
  9. Maryland State Archives, "Eastern Shore Meetings (c. 1656--)"; Archive.org (https://web.archive.org : accessed 4 February 2018), 4 Aug 2002 capture.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Carroll, pg 176.
  11. Brickhouse, Grady Gordon. "Eastern Shore Quakers." Brickhouse Family Association (viewed via Brickhouse Family at Archive.org, 14 Sept 2009 capture), paragraph 1.
  12. Carroll, pg 181.
  13. Wikipedia, "Nassawadox, Virginia," accessed 4 February 2018.
  14. Carroll, pg 184.
  15. Carroll, pg 187.
  16. Carroll, pg 189.
  17. 17.0 17.1 Jones, D. Mitchell. "Prettyman Generation One and Two." Prettyman Family of Delmarva (viewed via Prettyman Family at Archive.org, 8 Dec 2010 capture), P27 para 1-2.
  18. James Bowden, "The History of the Society of Friends in America" p. 359

See Also:

  • The Journal of the Friends Historical Society, Vol 10, No 1 (1913), pgs 30-31, The Editors, book review, "Early Friends on the Eastern Shore of Virginia"; digital images, Friends Historical Society, The Journal of the Friends Historical Society (http://journals.sas.ac.uk/fhs : accessed 23 June 2018). [Article regarding a book "written by Jennings Cropper Wise, of Richmond, Va., and published by the Bell Company of Richmond (9 by 6, pp. 406 ... under the title, Ye Kingdome of Accawmacke or the Eastern Shore of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century." The article contains two citations to court records which document land and money left for the Nassawaddox Meetinghouse. McGee-1611 13:57, 23 June 2018 (UTC)]

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Added a citation to a Friends Historical Society article. The article contains citations to two Court cases which apply to the Nassawaddox Meetinghouse land and building maintenance fund.
posted by Debi (McGee) Hoag