Nearby to the northeast stood Ellis Preaching House, an early Methodist meetingplace in Sussex County. Francis Asbury, a pioneering Methodist leader and circuit rider, first visited the Ellis family in 1775 and later conducted services at the preaching house on numerous occasions. The Ellis Preaching House, built by 1782, received its name because it was constructed on property owned by William Ellis. Annual conference meetings were held there in April 1782, May 1783, and April 1784. After the 1784 meeting, Methodists convened in Baltimore, Maryland, and formed the Methodist Episcopal Church. The preaching house was still standing in the 1820s.