This picture was sent to me by Barbara Martin
Stewart and she got if from Troy Taylor.
This picture looks to have been made in the early
1900's. The Church was built in the summer of 1903. You will notice the
platform which appears to be from the road to the door and this was apparently
how you entered the Church before the side walk and steps were added. You will
also notice that the Church Yard was fenced (wooden board on the west and woven
wire on the east). You can catch a glimpse of the old barn that was next to the
Church in the right side of the picture.
Legend has it that Davy Blackwell stood in the
road in the fall of 1904 and watched the cemetery being fenced and said,
"wonder who will be the first person buried there". He was actually
the first person buried there when he fell on icy rails in the Bluefield Train
Yard in January, 1905 and a train ran over him. He was brought back to the
Chapel to be laid to rest. He had two daughters, Blanche and Stella, who
followed him in death the same month and the same year. They both died of
diptheria. Since I see no cemetery fence in the picture, this picture could
have been made in the Winter of 1903-04.
So much for the history lesson today. Your task is
to name the people and date of this picture. Good Luck!
On December 27, 1902, John D. Blackwell and his wife, Elizabeth, sold one and 1/2 acres of land to the Trustees of the Missionary, Primitive, and Christian Baptist Churches and the Methodist Episcopal Church, South for the sum of one dollar. This land is now the site of Blackwell Chapel United Methodist Church and cemetery. The church building was completed in the summer of 1903, and the first burial in the cemetery took place in January, 1905. The church has been used by several denominations since its founding; however, the Methodists have occupied it regularly since 1903.