The Birmingham Meeting House and Beyond

We wandered around the Birmingham-Lafayette Cemetery for a little while, trying to locate the mass grave of those on both sides who died near the meeting house during the Battle of Brandywine. The directions we had weren’t clear as to exactly where to find the grave.

(Birmingham-Lafayette Cemetery. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

Eventually we stepped over the wall and made our way towards the meetinghouse.

(Birmingham-Lafayette Cemetery. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

On our way to the meeting house we passed through the Peace Garden which, as it happens, is where the mass grave is located.

(Battle of Brandywine monument and grave. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

The Peace Garden is a lovely place with a wonderful dedication:

During the Battle of the Brandywine on September 11, 1777, the American army used the walls of this Quaker burial ground in their first line of defense. Both armies used this meetinghouse of Quaker pacifists as a hospital. Behind the wall is the common grave of British and American soldiers killed in the battle.

The Peace Garden at Birmingham surrounding this grave is a place to contemplate a world without war. This site is dedicated to the imperative need to employ peaceful alternatives to deadly conflict.

Dedicated 2005

Imagine, a world without war. Wouldn’t that be something?

(Peace Garden at Birmingham. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

I like the idea of closing the gate and shutting out war.

In the Peace Garden near the monument are stones with quotes about peace. Here are a few of them (as usual, the blog cuts off the right side of the image so you’ll have to right click and view image if you want to see it all):

(Peace Garden. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

(Peace Garden. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

(Birmingham Meeting House. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

The Birmingham Meeting House is still active and in use. It was built in 1763 and, as stated in the dedication, was used as a hospital for both sides during the Battle of Brandywine.

(Birmingham Meeting House. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

We left the Birmingham Meeting House and continued our driving tour which took us past a Civil War cannon on the corner of Birmingham and Wylie Roads.

(Civil War cannon. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

There were heavy casualties in this area during the battle, the cannon fire was hot and heavy, and it was here that a British officer commented on the battle:

Incline to the right!
Incline to the left!
Halt! Charge!
The balls plowing up the ground.
The trees cracking over one’s head.
The branches riven by the artillery.
The leaves falling as in autumn by the grapeshot.

To read more about the battle, visit the Brandywine Battlefield website.

From there we went to Sandy Hollow where there’s now a nice park and walking track.

(Sandy Hollow park. Photo by Robin. July 2007)

We made our way to the Dilworth Crossroads which is where the final actions of the battle were fought as night fell. This is an interesting little intersection with a Country Store that was built in 1758 and is said to be one of the oldest general stores in continuous operation. Across the street from the Country Store is a blacksmith shop, the Arden Forge (currently for sale). And on one of the other corners is the Dilworthtown Inn, also built in 1758, and has long been a popular stopping place on the Wilmington Pike.

And so ends our tour of the Brandywine Battlefield.

10 Comments on “The Birmingham Meeting House and Beyond”

  1. Winslie Gomez says:

    I am really pleased to come across your article and the pictures are remarkable.

    I agree with your line “Imagine, a world without war. Wouldn’t that be something?”
    I wrote something similar here

    Hope you don’t mind that link.

  2. Winslie Gomez says:

    Thanks for popping by.

    There is a part of me that lives in hope and yet another screaming part that says “get real”.

    I do wish it were possible for your imagine and mine to become real!

  3. I recently came into possession of a souvenir plate with a picture of the Birmingham Meeting House as its topic. This plate measures 9 and 1/8 inches in diameter and is boardered by blue flowers. It was produced by Wright Tyndale & Van Roden of Philadelphia, and has PELLATT 212541 embossed on the back. Do you know anything about this item? Thanks in advance for any assistance rendered.

  4. Mary C. says:

    Great photos and accurate info! Brought back great memories of my trip to PA. I would like to attach a link to your blog on my Google Trek if you don’t mind.
    Thanks, MMC

  5. Nancy says:

    The beautiful photos and descriptions are such an interesting bit of history. I always find peaceful serenity in the Birmingham-Lafayette Cemetery adjoining the Meeting House. Thank you very much for this lovely website.

    • Robin says:

      I’m glad you enjoyed the post, Nancy. Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. I appreciate it. 🙂

      I found it to be a peaceful place too.

  6. keith chilton says:

    I would love it if you would visit my page for Capt John Chilton and add your photo to the memorial. I used your picture in it and gave you credit in the caption for it, but I feel it would be better if you posted it there, since you took the picture. Would you please?

    It’s a wonderful picture, nice and close and you can read everything really well.. I’ve been searching for the best one out there. If you post your picture, I’ll delete mine so you get the full credit you deserve. Hopefully you are already a member on there…

    thank you. I guess this is kind of a “do I have permission to do this?” thing too, even though I gave you the credit for it. You probably didn’t know anything about it. I just did it in the past couple days by the way.

    thank you

    • Robin says:

      Hi Keith! I would gladly give you permission, but I’ve added the photo for you since you seem more comfortable with that. And thank you, for asking and for liking the photo. 🙂

      • keith chilton says:

        thanks so much Robin! Love it on the memorial 🙂 Just want to give credit where it’s due. I didn’t travel there and take the picture.

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