NOTE: Historic Trinity Church houses the CHSV Research Library and the Genealogy Libraries.
The first church on this site in 1855 was called the Central Church. However, this circa 1855 Central Church only lasted a couple of decades. Central Church had been erected on land owned by the Reverend George Nolley and his wife. It was a large church that soon saw a loss of membership during the Civil War. The war had created a dwindling congregation because soldiers left and never returned. The church Reverend Nolly had built was too large even though it was the center for the churches in the area. It had a gallery for the African-American members who attended the church. But by 1871, this church was soon to be only memories to some and it was torn down. Around the local area the church became known as “Nolly’s Folly “. Evidently some thought it had been a joke to build such a large church. After it was demolished, the Methodist congregation‘s closest church was located at Zion Hill, five miles away, and a big distance to travel for some. It would be years before another church would be built in Chesterfield.By 1887, the Methodist congregation in the Chester and the Chesterfield localities determined that they had enough people to support another church and the decision was made to build Trinity. Historic Old Trinity church, built by Sam Ellison, a merchant and a florist, was actually built on the grounds of the previous Methodist Central Church and land owned by the Cogbills. On a bright day on September 8, 1887 with cool autumn breezes, the cornerstone was laid in the presence of a large gathering of people. A number of articles were deposited in the cornerstone, such as the date of the church organization, the signature of its pastor, Reverend James Stiff, a copy of the church discipline, the Christian Advocate, the roll of its members and other things which would be nice to know about today. Visit Historic Trinity Church to see what the Chesterfield Historical Society can offer you today.