Single Brothers’ House & Garden

600 South Main Street

DCF 1.0

Constructed 1769 with 1786 addition, restored 1964

Ticket required, open during operating hours.

Salem’s residents were members of the Moravian church. The Moravian Church, or Unitas Fratrum, is a Protestant faith originating in the present-day Czech Republic and Germany. In the 18th and 19th century, Moravians lived by the choir system, where members with similar life experiences (age, gender, marital status) worshipped together. Some of these groups even lived together. In Salem, the choir for unmarried men, the Single Brothers’ Choir lived together in this building. Across the square was similar housing for the Single Sisters’ Choir.

The Single Brothers’ House was built in two sections. The right-hand side is the oldest, built in 1769 with half-timbered construction. As Salem grew as a town, so did the Single Brothers’ choir. In 1786, the all brick expansion was added.

The Single Brothers lived, worshipped and ate in this building. Some brothers who were master craftsmen rented space in the building or the workshop behind to operate their trade. The Single Brothers as a group also held a plantation and garden, operated a bakery, as well as a brewery, distillery, tannery and slaughterhouse (located behind the house toward Salem Creek).

Today many trades are demonstrated here including joinery, tailoring, and pottery. Other areas to tour include the Saal, or worship room, with an original Tannenberg organ, the Vorsteher’s, or business manager’s, office, along with the kitchen and dining room.