Roberts Memorial United Methodist Church is the oldest black Methodist Church in Alexandria. Prior to 1830, the Black Methodist in Alexandria, Virginia was members of the white Trinity Methodist Church. By 1830, the Black Methodist established their own Church called Davis Chapel after their white Minister. After 1844, Davis Chapel Church renamed their Church to Roberts Chapel due to a split within the Methodist Church on the issue of slavery. The Church was located between two Black neighborhoods called the “Bottoms” and “Hayti.”
Prior to the civil war, Roberts Chapel organized a Sabbath school and a secular school, that met at the church until Alexandria retrocedes to Virginia in 1847. After the civil war, the school reopened.
Roberts Chapel members were freed and enslaved people. This section will talk about some of their members and the impact they had on the history of Alexandria.