Archie's Corner – Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania - Atlas Obscura

Archie's Corner

Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania

These ruins of an octagonal stone school that was later used as an A.U.M.P. church exemplify a popular school design from the 1830s. 

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The Bullock Octagonal School was constructed in 1838 on land purchased from Robert Bullock. The eight-sided plan where the design placed the teacher at the center of the room, allowing oversight of the full class.

The school was sold in 1875 and a new schoolhouse was built on neighboring property. In 1891, Linda A. Archie, a Black preacher, bought the property and set about building a church on the site.

“Mother” Archie’s African Union Methodist Protestant congregation met in this church until some time after her passing in 1932. A cemetery stands near the ruins of the octagonal building, but only some of the markers for the gravesites that once existed are still visible at the site.

The name Archie’s Corner is derived from a 1953 drawing of the site by famed realist painter and artist Andrew Wyeth, a native of Chadds Ford who frequently visited the site. 

Know Before You Go

There is a small drive just off of Bullock Road near the historical marker. The ruins of the octagonal building and cemetery are open for exploration, but the property on which the replacement octagonal school building was built is on private property. Please respect the owners of that property and limit visitation to the aforementioned ruins.

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March 25, 2022

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