Lomax African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church
The Lomax African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church (shortened to the Lomax A.M.E. Church) is an Arlington, Virginia-based historic African Methodist Episcopal Zion church. Built in 1922, the church’s congregation itself dates back to 1863 with the formation of the Wesley Zion Church. On December 3rd, 2003, it was designated on the Virginia Landmark Register, and on February 11th, 2004, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Today, the church continues to hold services and be active in its community.
Backstory and Context
In 1863, a group of freed slaves formed the Wesley Zion Church in Freedman’s Village south of Washington, DC. The church had no chapel or church to speak of, and so the congregation held services in the homes of different congregation members in Freedman’s Village. At some point during the church’s time in Freedman’s Village, the congregation changed the name of the church to the Little Zion Church, and in 1874, some of the members of the church began to search for a plot of land to construct a physical church for the congregation. A spot in what was then called Nauck in the 1870s was chosen, and much of the congregation moved with the church itself into the Nauck area. Around this time, African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church-ordained minister Reverend T. H. Lomax was selected to see to the teachings of the Washington, DC, and northern Virginia areas, and the congregation of the Little Zion Church accepted his teachings. As a result, they renamed the congregation the Lomax A.M.E. Zion Church.
In 1867, the church’s first church building was built, followed by yet another in 1887. One final church building was constructed in 1922, which would go on to be the current home of the Lomax A.M.E. Zion Church. The church would go on to have a thriving congregation in the following years. On December 3rd, 2003, it was designated on the Virginia Landmark Register, and on February 11th, 2004, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Today, the Lomax A.M.E. Zion Church continues to serve its congregation and community.