Scott’s Chapel and cottage added to Rehoboth 1910 diorama

May 3, 2021

Rehoboth Beach historian Paul Lovett has mounted models of Scott’s Chapel and its adjacent cottage to his diorama of 1910 Rehoboth Avenue.

Scott’s Chapel was built in 1880. It was largely financed by Baltimore magnate James E. Hooper, a descendent owner of the Baltimore firm that controlled the duck cotton industry. Duck cotton was used as sailcloth for merchant sailing ships of the time and for such things as canvas for oil paintings.

Hopper had his summer cottage on the Boardwalk at Virginia Avenue. He and a friend built Scott’s Chapel as a nondenominational meeting place for Rehoboth’s summer residents. The structure was named after the beloved Bishop Scott who was prominent in early Rehoboth and who preached the first sermon at Rehoboth’s newly built campgrounds tabernacle in July 1873.

Scott’s Chapel burned down in 1913 during Rehoboth’s largest fire. At the time, buildings in Rehoboth were largely wooden structures. The 1913 fire destroyed more than 30 residences, commercial establishments, and related outbuildings on Baltimore Avenue. Within the next year, Epworth Chapel was moved to the same site where Scott’s Chapel had been. Formerly, Epworth Chapel had been located at 99 Rehoboth Ave., where the Cultured Pearl Restaurant is today. The building move occurred over a weekend, so Sunday services were held in the middle of the street with the structure on log rollers.

Roger and Patricia Truitt sponsored the Scott’s Chapel and Cottage portion of the diorama. The couple were married at Epworth Church when it was on Baltimore Avenue, approximately 100 years after that first chapel occupied the site.

The new chapel and cottage models join 30 other buildings already positioned on the diorama. Each model replicates structures that existed in 1910. The diorama is a multi-year project to re-create Rehoboth Avenue during the railroad era. It will eventually depict sites extending back to the west side of the canal. The diorama is on display in the Rehoboth Beach Main Street building next to Grove Park and can be seen by appointment under COVID-safe visitation guidelines.

To schedule an appointment, contact Paul Lovett at or 302-893-9391.

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