A Guide to the Roberts United Methodist Church Records, 1877-1913 Roberts United Methodist Church Records 48

A Guide to the Roberts United Methodist Church Records, 1877-1913

A Collection in
Alexandria Library
Local History/Special Collections
Accession Number 48


Alexandria Library, Local History/Special Collections

Alexandria Library
Local History/Special Collections
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Alexandria, Virginia 22314-2420
(703) 838-4577 (voice)
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Email: lhsc@alexandria.lib.va.us
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© 2007 Alexandria Library. All rights reserved.

Processed by: Michele Lee, Reference Librarian

Alexandria Library, Local History/Special Collections
Accession Number
Roberts United Methodist Church Records 1877-1913
Physical Characteristics
1 box

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Preferred Citation

Roberts United Methodist Church Records, Accession #48, Alexandria Library, Local History/Special Collections, Alexandria, Va.

Acquisition Information

Margaret Vining. These materials were xeroxed from the original in July 1979.

Alternative Form Available

The records are available on microfilm.

Biographical/Historical Information

In 1830, African American members of the Trinity Methodist Church decided to form their own congregation. They formed the Methodist Episcopal Church which became more firmly established with the building of a chapel in 1834. This chapel, named the Davis Chapel, after a white minister, was renamed the Roberts Chapel in 1844 giving the congregation its current name. Until the Civil War, white ministers led the church, but after 1866 African Americans have filled the pulpit.

Scope and Content

The original collection consisted of a variety of record books and other loose materials. The books recorded the attendance at the Sunday School as well as more general church events, such as a list of contributors or the events of the quarterly conferences on the condition of the church. Of particular interest to historians of the church may be the notes of the pastors in the front of the Comprehensive Church Record (folder 6) which record some of the financial and congregational struggles of the church between 1893 to 1905. Genealogists may well want to search the same Record for the names of members during this same period.


The records are divided into two series: I. Sunday School Records, arranged chronologically. II. Other Church Records and Miscellaneous Materials, arranged chronologically.

Index Terms


  • African -Americans - Virginia - Alexandria
  • Church records and registers - Virginia - Alexandria

Adjunct Descriptive Data

Location of Originals

Originals are still held at the Roberts United Methodist Church.

Contents List

Series I: Sunday School Class Records
Box 48
  • Box-folder 48:1
    Folder 1: Sunday School Classes 1887

    Attendance Records; Minutes; Register of Officers, Male and Female Scholars, and Teachers; Financial Account; and Historical Account, 1887.

  • Box-folder 48:2
    Folder 2: Sunday School Classes 09/04/1892-03/27/1898

    Attendance Records

  • Box-folder 48:3
    Folder 3: Sunday School Classes 01/01/1893-12/24/1893

    Attendance Records and Minutes

  • Box-folder 48:4
    Folder 4: Sunday School Classes 11/6/1898-12/29/1901

    Attendance Records, Part 1 (Pages 1-77)

  • Box-folder 48:5
    Folder 5: Sunday School Classes 01/05/1902-06/26/1904

    Attendance Records, Part 2 (pages 78-117)

Series II: Other Church Records and Miscellaneous Materials
Box 48
  • Box-folder 48:6
    Folder 6: Comprehensive Church Record 1891,1893,1894-1909,

    Includes Historical Records with entries by pastors from 1893, 1891, 1895, 1900, 1905; Pastoral Records (1894-1906), Records of Officers (1899-1901), Probationer's Records (1894-1909), and Members in Full Connection with notes on expulsions, deaths, etc.

  • Box-folder 48:7
    Folder 7: Miscellaneous Reports, Financial Documents and Correspondence 1889-1911, 1900-1901, 1911, 1913

    Includes "Official Roll of 1900-1901 "; Reports from the Sunday School, the Epworth League, Junior League, Methodist Brotherhood, and the Ladies' Aid mostly from 1911; Financial Reports from 1913; Letters from 1889 to 1911.

  • Box-folder 48:8
    Folder 8: Minutes of the Quarterly Conferences 07/02/1909-03/07/1913
  • Box-folder 48:9
    Folder 9: Records of the Epworth League 05/03/1911-01/18/1912, 03/07/1913

    Includes Minutes from May 3, 1911 through January 18, 1912, a letter from the president, G.N. Preston, March 7, 1913 complaining of the inactivity of the group, and a copy of the By-Laws of the District Epworth League.

  • Box-folder 48:10
    Folder 10: Contributions of Members 04/1921-03/1922

    No year appears in this record book. Using a perpetual calendar based on the dates of the Sundays for each month, it appears likely that these contributions came in the years 1921 and 1922. Since the record book itself appeared in 1918 as indicated by the words "1918 Edition " on the cover, it seemed likely that it was used sometime soon after that. The years 1921 and 1922 were the first possible. Other possible years included 1938/1939, 1949/1950, and 1960/1961, but it did not seem likely that the record book dates from those years. Researchers may want to verify this by checking the addresses of the members in city directories or other sources during the years 1921 and 1922.

  • Box-folder 48:11
    Folder 11: Songbook 1877

    "Heavenward "

  • Box-folder 48:12
    Folder 12: Songbook and Songsheets 1880,1940,1943

    "Welcome Songs for Sabbath Schools "(1880), "De Gospel Train " (1940), "Hide My Soul "(1943)