Barnwell Chapel

Barnwell Chapel 01

Completed and dedicated November 11, 1911, this chapel was named for the first architect at Berry, Capt. John Barnwell. It was originally used as both a classroom building and a chapel. The classrooms have also been used for a study hall, music studio, library and store. Pews built in the school shop replaced school desks in 1920. The altar, also made in the school shop, was a gift of the College Class 1951.

Ivy on the chapel has grown from a sprig brought by Elizabeth Brewster, first faculty member, from the ruins of Melrose Abbey in Scotland. 

In February 1942, Miss Berry’s body lay in state prior to her funeral. A guard of honor composed of staff and students maintained a vigil throughout this time. 

In 1974, the Berry College Student Government Association adopted Barnwell Chapel as its first Mountain Day project funding a partial renovation that enabled the chapel to be used for Sunday services each summer since 1975. 

A major gift, made in memory of E. M. and Florence Doty by their niece Joyce VanderPyl Scott funded the restoration and renovation of Barnwell. Completed in the spring of 1985, the chapel is now available on a year-round basis. 

In addition to Sunday evening mass, Barnwell Chapel is the site of weddings, concerts, special speakers, events and programs.