Zion Poplars Baptist Church

Historical Significance

Established in 1886, Zion Poplars Baptist Church is one of the oldest independent African American congregations in Gloucester County. Oral tradition holds that the founders first met for religious services under seven poplar trees, four of which still stand on the church grounds. Like most independent black churches established during the Reconstruction era, Zion Poplars served the spiritual, educational, and economic needs of its congregants and the larger community. Zion Poplars Baptist Church was listed on the Virginia Historic Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places in 1999.

Physical Description

The church building, which dates from 1894, is an excellent example of 19th century Gothic Revival style with vernacular detailing. The interior of the church exhibits the craftsmanship of a formerly enslaved artisan named Frank Braxton. Braxton, early congregants, their descendants, and war veterans are buried in the old and new cemeteries.

Geographical and Contact Information

7000 T.C. Walker Road
Gloucester, Virginia
Phone: 804-693-4821


Zion Polars Baptist Church

Zion Polars Baptist Church

Historic Marker View File Details Page

Zion Polars Baptist Church

Zion Polars Baptist Church

View File Details Page

Cite this Page:

Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, “Zion Poplars Baptist Church,” African American Historic Sites Database, accessed June 18, 2019, http://www.aahistoricsitesva.org/items/show/496.

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