Sadsbury Friends Meeting House, Simmontown Road, .25 mile east of Route 41 intersection, Christiana, Lancaster County, PA
Significance: Among the earliest extant meeting houses in the Delaware Valley, Sadsbury is a rare example of an early meeting house form. Sadsbury's square shaped plan and three-by-three bay elevations with centrally located entries on the southeast and southwest resemble those meeting houses built in late seventeenth and early eighteenth-century Philadelphia. Of those, the most is known about the 1703 structure, the Second Bank Meeting House, the appearance of which survives in a sketch. Like the Second Bank Meeting House, Sadsbury has entries on contiguous sides and is capped by a hipped roof. Coupled with the use of dual entries, the unequally partitioned interior of Sadsbury suggests that the Sadsbury Friends followed the English format for worship when they designed and erected their meeting house in 1747. In England, and during the early settlement period in the Delaware Valley, both men and women Quakers met together in the larger of the rooms for worship. They then separated into different spaces for the business portion of the meeting. The logistical effects of the English program, as seen in Sadsbury, are manifested architecturally in the two front elevations as well as in the position of the partition, the facing benches, and the gallery. Today, however, the facing benches have been relocated and the gallery is gone for it burned as early as 1764. Evidence of the gallery is seen in the attic space.
Unprocessed Field note material exists for this structure: N823
Survey number: HABS PA-6651
Building/structure dates: 1747 Initial Construction
Building/structure dates: 1903 Subsequent Work
Building/structure dates: 1973 Subsequent Work