Arney's Mount Friends Meeting House

Exterior Photographs


This small meeting house is unusual among those in Burlington County in being constructed of stone rather than the brick examples more common on the Jersey side of the Delaware. The ironstone of which it is built was quarried from the mount on which the building stands.  In 1743, Friends, living near what was then known as Shreve's Mount, asked the Burlington Monthly Meeting of Friends for permission to meet in a schoolhouse at the mount. The congregation increased, and in 1775 erected this meeting house. The builder was Samuel Smith, whose name is inscribed on a stone above the front doorway. As the number of practicing Quakers declined, the meeting was "laid down" or closed in 1871. Nevertheless, as was customary among the Friends, the building was maintained by the Mount Holly Monthly Meeting and used occasionally for worship and First-day school. It reopened for worship on a regular basis in 1941.

The Arney's Mount Meeting is in remarkably intact condition. On the exterior, 12/1Z shuttered sash light the meeting room, while smaller 8/8 windows light the gallery. Electricity and heating have never been installed, nor has the woodwork been painted. This includes panels, which can be used to close off or open the gallery running around three sides of the interior, and which rise into the attic. The burying ground is adjacent to the meeting and is surrounded by a sandstone wall erected in 1870. Although, as was the early Friends' custom, the oldest graves are not marked, records indicate that burials pre-date construction of the Meeting House by many years. Families that have used the burial ground include many significant in the history of the area, including "Lippincott", "Shreve", "Gaskill", and "Newbold".




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