African American Faith Community
When freed slaves moved from nearby Redland and Goshen, they purchased land in the Gaithersburg area and established the community of Emory Grove. In the 1860s a Black Methodist camp was founded. Church services, Sunday School and prayer meetings were held in the home of freedman and Civil War veteran, John Dorsey.1
Emory Grove Methodist Church built its first structure in 1874 at the corner of Washington Grove and Emory Grove Roads where it still stands today. It became the hub of the African American community. Emory Grove Camp Meeting was established nearby in 1877 and drew large crowds for its annual August gatherings until the 1960s.
1950 advertisement for Emory Grove Camp Meeting
Walking from the Washington Grove train station to Emory Grove Camp Meeting