The History of All Hallows Parish
The Church of England was officially established in the Colony of Maryland In 1692 by King William and Queen Mary, who chartered 30 parishes, one of which was All Hallows, South River . However, our earliest Parish records date back to March 1, 1669, noting the first recorded baptism at All Hallows. Since its establishment in early 1692, All Hallows has had a long line of rectors, some of whom, like the biographer, Mason Locke Weems, who invented the story of George Washington and the cherry tree, were famous in their own right.
The following is a brief history of All Hallows Parish. A fuller history of All Hallows, compiled and written by Parish member, Gail Enright, is available through the Parish Office.
The Brick Church
In October of 1729, the General Assembly of Maryland assessed a tax of 20,000 pounds of tobacco to build “The Brick Church.” The building’s Interior was altered extensively during the 19th century according to needs and tastes of the time. A fire in 1940, left only the walls standing, but the subsequent rebuilding efforts restored The Brick Church to its original Georgian style.
In 1855, the parish purchased a small 18th century house located on the western side of the Parish in Davidsonville to serve as the rectory. In 1859, the house was expanded with a large two-story addition.
To lessen the travel distance for parishioners living on the western side of the Parish, construction of a chapel-of-ease in Davidsonville was begun in 1860. Delayed by the Civil War, it was completed in 1865.
The Parish House
In 1960, a Sunday school was built adjacent to The Brick Church. Today it houses Parish offices, classrooms, coffee hour and meeting spaces, the kitchen, food bank, and choir rehearsal room.
The Queen Anne Communion Set
An 18th century sterling silver communion set was furnished to the Parish by the bounty of Queen Anne. This set is used on special occasions, and always on the Feast of Pentecost.
The Lancaster Cross
The Lancaster Cross was a gift from The Reverend John Miles Evans, the XXXIX th Rector of All Hallows Parish. The cross is a copy of the processional cross commissioned for the Chapel of the Savoy in London , by Queen Elizabeth II.