Dear Engaged Couples-
I’ve written about small weddings before and the intimacy that these afford. I recently discovered a great place in Charlottesville for intimate weddings. Another Great Venue. It’s a chapel–maybe one you have seen before if you too live in Charlottesville–at least I have seen it countless times on my drives along Garth Road, usually on my way to and from vineyards further west. It’s a chapel. A small, white wood frame chapel which looks like it would hold only thirty or so people. It was, in fact, at one time a small church, serving a congregation of about 30 people. Acording to the internet, the property on which it sits was once owned by the Garth family, a long time landholding/slave owning family in the area and acquaintances of Thomas Jefferson. the Garth family is mentioned in a new biography of Thomas Jefferson enittled Master of the Mountain: Thomas Jefferson and his Slaves, by Henry Wiencek. The Garth Chapel aka St. James Church, was constructed in 1896, under the sponsorship of Christ Episcopal Church.
The Church is on the historic register, as well it should be. It is an excellent example of Gothic Revival architecture.
According to the bride-to-be, who is considering marrying at this chapel, the family who owns it and cares for it, rents it out for weddings, funerals, Christenings and such. this engaged woman has had some friendly conversations with the owners. The only stipulation is that the services performed there must have Christian elements, since it is still a consecrated church.
Drawbacks to consider. the church has no running water, no restrooms and no electricity. I suspect that the owner does not allow candles, either, but I don’t know this for certain. Definitely a good question to ask. Phone number to find out moe: 434-293-7772 .
Happy Wedding Planning!
Your Wedding Preacher for Hire
Enjoy these pics from http://www.dhr.virginia.gov/SlideShows/BoardMeetings/2012Sept/stJamesChurch.html