Queen Chapel AME Church


Begun in 1892 in the Brownsville area.

Located on Beach City Road.

“Rev. Richard Harvey Cain, James H.A. Johnson, and James Handy arrived on Hilton Head on the Steamship Argo on May 12, 1865, and established Queen Chapel AME Church. They were on their way to Charleston, but a storm arose and the ministers were forced to land on Hilton Head Island in the area called Cherry Hill. As they waited for the storm to pass over, they decided to have services with prayers and singing under a large oak tree. This was to be an historic event because it was when African Methodism began in the State of South Carolina. A few years later Queen Chapel AME Church was built and would become the mother church.”

The property was purchased from W.D. Brown in 1886 and the first church "was built on September 11, 1892. Services were held in the church before completion. The pastor was Rev. R.C. Williams and the presiding elder, Rev. P.W. Jefferson." The present church was built in 1954.

  • Grant, Moses, Looking Back, p.60, 67


Located on Beach City Road, the current building was raised in 1954.

Queen Chapel was first constructed 78 years ago and it is thought to be named after one of England’s queens.

  • The Island Packet, August 27, 1970


 “...has identified the picture of the church formerly located near Robbers Row as being the Methodist Church now located on Beach City Road. (Issac Wilborn, Jr. - It is believed that the Church was taken apart and reassembled there in 1872, the date of the foundation cornerstone).

The Methodist Church, a member of the 7th Episcopal District in South Carolina was organized in 1862-63 but it is not known where meetings were previously held. It is part of the Methodist Weslyan Synod with the Reverend A.C. Keitt as pastor.”

The picture was taken in 1864 in what is today Port Royal Plantation.

  • The Museum Monitor, Vol. 3, 1991