Norristown Meetinghouse 


thumbnail IMG-3877 flowers

Look not out, but within...Remember it is a still voice that speaks to us in this day, and that it is not to be heard in the noises and hurries of the mind; but it is distinctly understood in a retired frame. -William Penn, 1644 - 1718

On April 7, 1842, land on the corner of Swede and Jacoby Streets was deeded by Samuel Jacoby and his wife, Susanna, to Lindley Rossiter for the sum of $1,237.50. There were 113 persons who contributed to this purchase. The trustees were duly appointed and some burials were made on the grounds prior to 1851. First steps toward organization were taken that year and work on the construction of the meeting house was then begun. No known burials were made after that year.

The Meetinghouse was built Fourth month (April), 1852 and from old bills found, must have cost about $5,000. The first Meeting in the new Norristown Friends Meeting was held 16th of 5th month (April 16), 1852. The brief report in the newspapers said the house was ‘filled to overflowing’. The chief speakers were Joseph Foulke, a noted schoolmaster in Gwynedd, and Lucretia Mott, widely known Quaker preacher and leader in the anti-slavery movement. 

Opened as an Indulged Meeting under Gwynedd Meeting care, Norristown became a Preparative Meeting in 1858 and finally established as an independent Monthly Meeting in 1953.

In 1872 the trustees were authorised to sell "all or part of the lot on Jacoby Street---60 feet front and running back to the public school lot". This was done at a public sale and the proceeds helped defray the cost of curbing and paving, and for the errection of an iron fence. The sale of these lots left the property as it is today.

The building was remodeled in 1959 to provide a second floor within the original structure's high ceiling to form a social floor with kitchen and stage and library and partitions to form two additional First Day School classrooms.

Insight Support, 2/25/2020