Asbury Grove entranceHistory

Asbury Grove Methodist Camp Meeting, Hamilton MA

The Asbury Grove Methodist Camp Meeting on Asbury St. in Hamilton is listed in the National Register of Historic Districts, and has a collection of historic buildings that were built between 1870 and 1960. The land is owned by the Association, while the houses owned individually by the residents.

1859 Asbury Grove meeting
1859 meeting at Asbury Grove. Image courtesy: Asbury Grove by Jack A. Hauck
asbury_grove_entrance
Asbury Grove, around 1900

Founded by the Methodist church in 1857, twelve thousand people, primarily from the Boston and Lynn area, attended the first camp meeting in 1859. A pulpit and wooden benches were erected in a pine grove and guests slept in large tents on platforms, but these gave way to over 300 cottages constructed by the beginning of the 20th Century. The site included a chapel, library, dining hall, hotel, bakery, post office and even its own jail. At its height in the late 1800s, trains and trolleys arrived with visitors up to a dozen times a day. Society moved away from the religious fervency of the 18th and 19th centuries, and the camp meeting declined.

The Circle Asbury Grove, MA
“The Circle” at Asbury Grove
Asbury Grove trolley stop
The Asbury Grove cafe had its own trolley stop. olleys arrived with visitors up to a dozen times a day.
Asbury Grove map
Asbury Grove in the 1910 Hamilton map
houses in Asbury Grove
Hamlin Ave. at Asbury Grove
Asbury Grove Choral Society
Asbury Grove Choral Society
Asbury Grove fire
A fire in 1927 destroyed many of the buildings.
Asbury Grove Methodist Campground
The Asbury Grove community continues to this day. The pulpit, tabernacle, library, dining hall, bakery and over 100 cottages still stand.

Sources and further reading:

Categories: History, Places, Video

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