BHM: John Wesley Church

OXFORD, Md. – There’s no indoor plumbing and it’s pretty tiny, but the John Wesley Church in Oxford Maryland once served as the place where many Talbot County residents came to worship, starting back in 1838.

By 1851, the congregation was mixed, but after the Civil War, the Black congregants purchased the church. It was at that point the John Wesley Church became all Black.

Although this house of worship was used for over 100 years, in the 70s it shuttered its doors and fell into disrepair. But a community campaign raised money to rehab the church and the cookhouse.

The John Wesley Preservation Society received non-profit status and their hard work paid off, being declared the first African American Museum in Talbot County in 2015. The John Wesley Preservation Society works hard to identify all the names of the more than 60 unmarked graves in the church’s cemetery. The effort is aimed at giving people the chance to reconnect with their ancestors.

Today, there is still ongoing work to bring the site into compliance with Talbot County and ADA requirements.

Categories: Black History Month, Local News