History of Celo Friends Meeting

Celo Friends Meeting is located within the Celo Community, a land trust in rural Western North Carolina that operates by consensus. The community was founded in 1937 by Arthur Ernest Morgan, and currently includes about 40 families on 1200 acres. Friends and Attenders of the Meeting come both from within the community and the wider region.


1940: The original house (which had no bathroom) was built in the 1940s by Erling and
Louise Toness. Erling also built the goat barn which eventually became the Meeting House.
1951: The house was remodeled by CCI and a bathroom and septic system installed. The
Toness family moved to another house in Celo.
1950s: Temporary residents occupied the original house.
1961: Margit Hirschenhauser moved from the Bruderhof Community and rented a house
from Celo Community.
1967: Celo Friends Meeting purchased a holding from CCI that included the goat barn and
Margit’s house. The house was remodeled by CFM, a bedroom was added and the goat
barn winterized for a Meetinghouse.
1967 to 1984: Margit became caretaker of CFM for 17 years.
1984 to 1999: 13 different caretakers occupied the house, with terms ranging from a few
months to three years.
1996: A new Margithaus was built that included a caretaker apartment, meeting room and
shared kitchen.
1999 to present: Rachel Weir became the caretaker and continues to tend the property today.