The English Chapel, NC

This chapel is located inside Pisgah National Forest close to Brevard, NC. It was built in 1860 by Rev. Alexander Fletcher English, a Circuit Rider for the Methodist Episcopal church. Rev. English settled in the Davidson River community where he married in 1859 and raised his family. The land upon which the church is built belonged to his father-in-law Strawbridge Young. Mr. young donated it to the church after the civil war. The building also served as a school for the community’s children.

In 1940 the original wooden structure was replaced with the current building The word English Chapel is spelled out with rocks over the main entrance door. Services are still conducted on Sundays attended by campers, hikers and locals. The chapel is also used for weddings. You can read a more detail account of its history in Linda Hoxit Raxter‘s essay.

We stopped by on 11/13/2021. It was a gorgeous autumn day. Fall was in full peak. The colors were stunningly beautiful along the trail that meanders by the Davidson River.

We parked at the Art Loeb trail parking off of Pisgah Highway. From there we made our way through an exercise trail first then walked Pisgah Highway before taking a left on the bridge leading to the church. The bridge is closed for vehicles. We were advised by the Davidson River Campground attendant to take this route. Once we reached the church, we realized there was a much safer way which we took get back to the car. There is a parallel trail to the one we started at but we needed to first walk across the bridge by the parking lot to take it. It starts on the other side of the river and leads directly behind the chapel. It was beautiful and much safer than walking the busy highway. I believe we hiked about 2 miles in the end. Alternatively, for a shorter walk, one could park at the Pisgah National Forest visitor center located across the street from the walking bridge by the chapel.

Reference English Chapel (, Church web site

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