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Virginia Landmarks: Old Stone Church in Centreville, Va. Special

By Leigh Goessl     Feb 22, 2013 in Travel
Fairfax - There is an Old Stone Church in Centreville, Va. located off of one of the main roads that stretches across Fairfax County. Still an active parish today, the church is a historical landmark.
Northern Virginia is deeply rooted in Early American history. As settlers arrived in the 17th and 18th centuries to the region, the area known today as "Fairfax County" links back to those early land establishments during the Colonial and Revolutionary War years.
Fairfax County is named for Thomas, sixth Lord Fairfax, Baron of Cameron who first arrived on North American soil in 1735 when he inherited a large parcel of land.
Fast forward to the 19th century and Fairfax County, along with surrounding counties, will again be noted in history books due to the prominent American Civil War battles and other events that took place in the area.
There are many historical landmarks from those earlier days that remain, some are well-known and others, less so. This writer routinely tries to seek out not only the well-known and highly toured locations in the region, but also some of the perhaps lesser known landmarks.
One such landmark is the "Old Stone Church". I had heard there was a historical church in Centreville, which is located on the western end of Fairfax County, and decided to take a ride over to see where it was. What I found was a stone church with a historical marker out front that indicated the structure had been used as a hospital by the Union Army, twice.
The first time was during the first battle of Manassas in 1861 when Assistant Surgeon David L. Magruder commandeered the building for medical treatments. According to the sign posted outside the church, Magruder would later write he “took possession of a stone church, pleasantly situated in a grove of timber, directly … to the right of the road we had passed on advancing to the attack.”
The church was used again a year later during the Second Battle of Manassas. It also served as a Confederate hospital, according to the posted sign, who took control of the Old Stone Church depended on where it fell as battle lines changed.
Soldiers had eventually dismantled the church, according to this Fairfax County web page, but it was rebuilt in 1870.
Over the years, the church building served many congregations of various denominations and is still an active one today. It is currently home to the Church of the Ascension.
According to the church's website, the church was built in 1854 by members of the Centreville Methodist Episcopal Church, South. The Church of the Ascension purchased the Old Stone Church in 1973.
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