Cobb’s Hill Methodist Church
Among Warwick’s specific sights is the seemingly nondescript Cobb’s Hill Methodist Church (off Cobb’s Hill Rd. on Moonlight Ln., tel. 441/236-8586, fax 441/232-4806, Sun. services from 9:30 a.m.). With a steeple and tiny sanctuary dating back to 1827, the Cobb’s Hill Methodist Church “built by slaves in moonlight”—a truism proudly carried on its sign and in its literature—holds a symbolic spot in the hearts of the island’s black community.
At a time when blacks were banned from worshiping in white churches, slaves and free blacks of the early 19th century constructed their own church in their spare time, including at night, using block from nearby quarries. (Slavery was abolished in Bermuda in 1834.)
Thanks to its proud past, the church is a point of interest noted on the Bermuda Tourism Department’s African Diaspora Trail, but the building is open only during Sunday worship and Wednesday prayer evenings. Visitors are welcome to these weekly events.
An addition to the building was erected in 1967, which now serves as the church hall. The most interesting section of the church from an architectural and historical perspective is the old sanctuary, where cedar beams and limestone slate and block were used to build a simple but sturdy structure that has withstood natural tempests and changing political times.
© Rosemary Jones from Moon Bermuda, 2nd Edition