York Town Square

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Redlands Quaker Meetinghouse: ‘Walking into this building is like walking back in time’

Two young people eat on a platform that was used to unload carriages and mount horses in the Redlands Meetinghouse’s early days. They attended the 200th anniversary of the meetinghouse, located just outside Lewisberry in northern York County, Pa. Also of interest: Lewisberry, the Quaker town that the Lewises (who else?) built and Big Conewago serves as physical, symbolic divider of York County culture and York County artist/historian Jim Rudisill: “History is really ‘His Story,’ the story of people… “.

Several impressions after strolling the grounds and the inside of the 200-year-old Redlands Meetinghouse Sunday afternoon… .

A living historian playing William Penn speaks at the 200th anniversary of the Redlands Meetinghouse in Newberry Township.
– The line up of the five Quaker meeting houses across northern York and Adams counties seemed planned. A guide at the Redlands house indicated that Newberrytown, Redlands, Warrington, Huntington (York Springs) and Menallen are roughly 10 miles apart. Together, they formed a large concentration of Englishmen and women in the northern tip of triangular York County.
– Warrington and Menallen continue to meet, and Redlands is open once a year. Quakers were concentrated in York, too. York Quakers congregate in their West Philadelphia Street meetinghouse, too.
– The rough wooden pews have a board to support your shoulder blades, but no back to support you lower backs. The upper board is angled to ensure that you don’t slouch, that you sit straight up. It would be a challenge today to sit comfortably there for an hour.
– The meetinghouse grounds are worthy of a visit on the 364 days of a year that the building is not open. The three-step mounting platform (see photograph above) brings you right back to the days when people rode horses and carriages to church. And the cemetery puts you right back into the 19th-century.
Also of interest:
– Read the York, Pa., Daily Record/Sunday News coverage of the anniversary at: Quakers celebrate meetinghouse’s 200th anniversary.
– To talk to a local expert about the meetinghouses and tours, contact Debra McCauslin via gettysburghistories.com.
People of varying religious groups founded York County and Northern York area strawberry part of Neapolitan county. and Quaker horticulturalist Jonathan Jessop was 19th-century York County Renaissance man.

York, Pa., Daily Record/Sunday News photographer Paul Kuehnel captures the Redlands anniversary on video and stills (above.) (For additional file photos, click here.