St. Phillip's Church is an important structure with regards to black history in the British Virgin Islands, and even around the world. Almost entirely in ruins now, this structure was built by freed black slaves in the early to mid 19th century, and stands as the first Black Church in the Americas.
When the slave trade in Great Brittan was abolished in 1807, the British Royal Navy liberated several ships carrying slaves from British waters. Some of them were brought to Tortola and given plots of land. These wronged individuals joined together and built the St. Philips Anglican Church and School, which was destroyed in the hurricane of 1916. Today, tourists can walk around the ruins and consider what life must have been like for these people.
The remains of this church are just a few stone walls held in place by wooden beams. The government of BVI has plans to restore the building.
Kingstown is a good option for those wishing to visit St. Phillip's Church, since those staying in this part of the Virgin Islands will have convenient access to the historical site for the duration of their trip. Despite the fact that the area isn't a concentrated tourist destination, you'll nevertheless find a small number of lodging options to choose from.
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If you find yourself hungry after viewing the historic site, no problem -- you will find numerous choices of food and beverage places in the vicinity. The most nearby place to eat is Brandywine Estate Restaurant, which offers Italian food. Also within a short distance, you and your party will encounter options including The Pub and Charlie’s where you shouldn't end your meal without sampling their specialty, desserts, among others.
There is no official schedule posted regarding operating hours because this structure is partially a part of nature now. Still, it is best to visit between sun up and sun down.
A visit to this powerful site is free.
Location: Off Blackburn Highway, Kingstown, Tortola
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