Jennifer K. Cosham
Pipe Creek Friends Meeting House
455, Quaker Hill Road, Union Bridge, Carroll County
The Pipe Creek Friends Meeting house is a 1 1/2-story brick structure in Flemish bond on a stone foundation. It is three bays wide and three bays deep, with a full length porch across two adjoining sides. The once-shingled roof is now tin-covered and there is an interior chimney at one gable end. The plain style of the structure reflects the conservatism of the Quaker sect. The only decorative work is the segmental arch of headers over the doors and windows. The windows have rough wood slat shutters, either casement or double hinged. The doors are also fabricated of rough wood slats battened together. The porch presently has a shed roof extending from the wall and supported by square posts with slightly chamfered corners. The gable ends are clapboard from the roofline and on one end there is a hinged door in the gable. A simplified treatment of façades exists with the east and west façades containing windows. Visual activity is provided in the façades by height differences in the openings in the bays--the opening in the central façade on the north, east, and west sides, and on the south façade the central member is higher than the openings in its flanking bays. The interior was reconstructed in 1934 due to a fire in October of that year.
Pipe Creek Friends Meeting included among its members many of the early and prominent families of the surrounding communities. William Farquar was known for his peace-making ability with the Indians. The Friends concern for the community and its future is shown by their early efforts to establish and maintain a school. The school was begun in 1774 and served as the main educational facility for the children since there was no public supported system. Among the students of this school was the American Sculptor William Rinehart. Another nationally prominent figure associated with the Pike Creek Friends Meeting is Herbert Hoover, whose great-great-grandfather was a member. The Meeting House was begun in 1771 and completed the next year. Its plain style architecture is indigenous to the religious concepts of the Quakers and also fulfills the functional requirements of the structure. Originally, the interior had vertical sliding doors in the center to separate the women's and men's meetings and yet be able to open the room up when meeting together. A fire in October 1934 destroyed the interior, but the original benches were saved. The exterior features, particularly the original roofline, are a fine example of the mid-Atlantic folk style.