Churches


Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church
454 Dexter Avenue
Montgomery, AL 36104
334-263-3970

Inscribed on the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church History Marker are the words:

Organized 1877. The second Black Baptist church in Montgomery. First Pastor was Rev. C.O. Boothe. Present structure built 1885. Designed by Pelham J. Anderson: built by William Watkins, a member of the congregations. Many prominent citizens of Montgomery have been members. Rev. Martin Luther King. Jr. served as pastor (1954-1960). Montgomery Bus Boycott organized here December 2, 1955.

 

Also, see 1963 March on Washington, Dr. Kings' Childhood Home, and Dr. King Memorial.

PHOTOS
L:
 History Marker. R: Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church.  

Picture taken August 5, 2009.

SOURCES
Site Visit
Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church. Montgomery, AL. 5 Aug. 2009.

Posted to website: September 14, 2008.


First Baptist Church

236 Harrison Street

Petersburg, VA 23803

804-732-2841

Oldest African American Congregation in the Nation

First Baptist Church began in Prince Georges County, Virginia when a group of Blacks known as the New Lights gathered for worship. Members lived in various locations throughout the county. The first service was held in 1756. Attempts were made in 1758 and 1759 to organize members into one church. In 1774, Rev. John Michaels consolidated members and formed First Baptist Church. The congregation moved to Petersburg after a fire destroyed their meeting place. The church relocated several more times before making the Harrison Street location their permanent place of worship.


PHOTOS
Top L, R:
First Baptist Church. 

Second L: Engraving over front doors. R: One of the first Church Orchestras.
Bottom 
L : Inside church. R: Church Organ.

Photos taken March 26, 2011.

SOURCES
Internet
"First Baptist Church Petersburg." Blackpast.org/aah/first-baptist-church-petersburg-virginia-1774, Web. 15 Apr. 2010.

 

Pamphlet
Lee, Peggy, E. C.; Mickens, Sandra, J.; Thompkins, Garland and Dr. Tillman, Jeremiah. "First Baptist Church of Petersburg, Petersburg, VA." Print.

Site Visit
Church Tour. Petersburg, VA. 26 Mar. 2011.

Posted to website: March 27, 2011.


First African Baptist Church

23 Montgomery Street

Savannah, GA 31401

912-233-6597

First Black Baptist Congregation in North America

George Leile, slave of a British Officer located in Savannah, was the first ordained Black Baptist pastor in Georgia. He established in 1777 the First African Baptist Church, which was originally named First Colored Baptist Church. It is considered the oldest African American Church in the United States. First Baptist Church in Petersburg, Virginia disputes that designation.

Leile baptized and trained David George who became reverend after Leile and his master fled to Jamaica. They left after American forces regained control of Savannah.

In 1802 First Colored Baptist Church divided into two separate congregations: Second Colored Church and the Ogeechee (Third) Baptist Church. First Colored Baptist Church and the Second Colored Baptist Church recombined in 1822 and changed its name to First African Baptist Church. The current structure was built by members of the congregation in 1859 and is the first Black owned building in Georgia.


PHOTOS First African Baptist Church.  

Picture taken December 22, 2011.

SOURCES
Books
Appiah, Kwame Anthony and Gates Jr, Henry Louis, ed. "Africana The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience." 1st ed. New York: Civitas, 1999. Print.

Curtis, Nancy, "Black Heritage Sites: An African American Odyssey and Finder's Guide." Chicago: American Library Association. 1996. Print.

Site Visit
First African Baptist Church. Savannah, GA. December 22, 2011.

Posted to website: March 30, 2011.


Michigan Street Baptist Church

511 Michigan Avenue

Buffalo, NY 14203

Michigan Street Baptist church, a former meeting place for abolitionists. Many of the most prominent African Americans of the day spoke at or attended the Michigan Street Baptist Church including W.E.B. Dubois and Booker T. Washington. The church was also used as a stop on the underground railroad.


PHOTOS
Top L:
 Michigan Street Baptist Church. R: Close up of sign in front of church. 

Bottom L: A hole in the ceiling of the church used as an entrance to a hiding place for escaped slaves. The pastor of the church stated that once inside, slaves would cover the hole and then put heavy bags on top of it so the door could not be pushed open. R: Hiding place for escaped slaves deep within the church.  

Photos taken August 10, 2008.

 

SOURCES
Site Visit
Michigan Street Baptist Church. Buffalo, NY. 10 Aug. 2008.

Posted to website: August 15, 2008.


Mt. Nebo Missionary Baptist Church

257 Carver Avenue

Philadelphia, MS 39350

601-656-1446

Photos L: Located on the grounds of the church is a memorial to Schwerner, Chaney and Goodman. R: Schwerner, Chaney, and Goodman memorial.

PHOTO
Mt. Nebo Missionary Baptist Church. 

Photo taken December 24, 2008.

SOURCES
Site Visit
Monument in Front of Church. Philadelphia, MS. 24, Dec. 2008.

Posted to website: 
February 22, 2009.


Mt. Zion Baptist Church

419 N. Elgin Avenue Greenwood District
Tulsa, OK 74120
918-584-0510

Mt. Zion Baptist Church was organized in 1909. It held services in temporary locations before breaking ground for the church at Haskell Street and Elgin Avenue. The congregation raised funds and the church was finished in May of 1921, just two weeks before it was burned down in the burning and bombing of Tulsa.


PHOTO
Mt. Zion Baptist Church.  

Photo taken December 22, 2008.

SOURCES                       
Lecture
Newman, Princetta. The History of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Various locations throughout Tulsa, Tulsa, OK. 22 Dec. 2008. Discussion/Tour

Site Visit
Mt. Zion Baptist Church. Tulsa, OK. 22 Dec. 2008.

Posted to website: December 29, 2008.



Sappony Baptist Church

10610 Concord Sappony Road
Stony Creek, Virginia 23882
434-246-4067

Inscribed on the Virginia Civil War Trails History Marker are the words:

Sappony Baptist Church, originally called Sappony Meeting House, was erected here in 1773. It was a part of the Kehukee Association, which consisted of churches in North Carolina and Virginia. In 1791, these associations divided along state lines and the 19 Virginia churches became the Portsmouth Baptist Association* Church membership grew and at one point half of Sappony's congregants were enslaved people. During the Civil War battle here on 28 June 1864, the sanctuary served as a hospital. Bullets from the battle pierced the church Bible, and cannonball holes in the front of the church still exist today.


PHOTOS
Top:
 Sappony Baptist Church.  

Bottom L: History Marker.  R: Virginia Civil War Trail History Marker.  

Picture taken June 27, 2009.

 

SOURCES
Site Visit
Sappony Baptist Church. Sappony, VA. 27 Jun. 2009.


Posted to website: July 1, 2009.


Scott's Chapel/Bucktown United Methodist Church

Bucktown Road
Cambridge, Maryland  21613

Written in the Dorchester and Caroline Counties, Maryland Driving Tour- Finding a way to Freedom - Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad Brochure:

“One Church Two Congregations”


Free and enslaved Black and white members attended segregated worshiped services at this church, founded in 1812. Harriet Tubman and her family is believed to have worshiped at this location.  The church had separate graveyards: African Americans were buried across the road. The current building was constructed in 1891.

PHOTOS
Top L:
 Scott's Chapel/Bucktown Methodist Church. R: Church sign over front door.
Second, Third and Bottom: African Americans buried across the road, in front of the church.  

Photos taken December 22, 2012.

SOURCES                       
Brochure
Dorchester and Caroline Counties, Maryland Driving Tour - Finding a way to Freedom - Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad Brochure, Cambridge, MD: nd. Print.

The Underground Railroad - Maryland's Network to Freedom, Maryland: nd. Print.

Internet                         
"Search by County - Dorchester County."  Maryland Historical Trust - Inventory of Historic Properties, Web. 22 Dec. 2012.

Site Visit
Scott's Chapel/Bucktown United Methodist Church. Cambridge, MD, VA. 22 Dec. 2012.

Posted to website: December 23, 2012.


Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church
14 W. Duval Street
Richmond, VA 23220
804-648-7511

Inscribed on the Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church History Marker are the words:

The Rev. John Jasper, born a slave in Fluvanna County on 4 July 1812, organized the Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church congregation in Richmond on 3 Sept. 1867 in a former Confederate stable on Brown’s Island. A nationally celebrated preacher, Jasper was best known for his 1878 sermon “De Sun Do Move.” which he later delivered by invitation more than 250 times. He died on 30 Mar. 1901 and is buried in (Woodland) Cemetery in Richmond. In 1869, the congregation moved to this site. The present church (built 1887-1890) was remodeled in 1925 in the Gothic Revival style by noted Black architect Charles T. Russell.


PHOTOS
L:
 Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church. R: John Jasper's grave monument.  

Photos taken September 19, 2008.

SOURCES                       
Lecture
Newman, Princetta. The History of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Various locations throughout Tulsa, Tulsa, OK. 22 Dec. 2008. Discussion/Tour

Site Visit
Sixth Mount Zion Baptist Church. Richmond, VA. 19 Sept. 2008.

Posted to website: September 21, 2008.


16th Street Baptist Church

1530 6th Avenue N.

Birmingham, AL 35203

205-251-9402

On September 15, 1963, a bomb exploded in the basement of Sixteenth Street Baptist Church killing Addie Mae Collins, Carole Rosamond Robertson, Cynthia Wesley and Carol Denise McNair. They were killed as they prepared to participate in the church's annual Youth Day service. 

The bomb was planted by four Ku Klux Klan members: Bobby Frank Cherry, Thomas Edwin Blanton, Herman Frank Cash and Robert Edward Chambliss. Initially only Chambliss was charged. He was tried on murder charges, acquitted and in 1977 found guilty. He was sentenced to several life terms. Bobby Frank Cherry was convicted in 2001 of all four murders and sentenced to life in prison. Thomas Edwin Blanton was also convicted of all four murders and sentenced to life in prison. Herman Frank Cash died in 1994 without being charged. Also see Greenwood Cemetery.

 


PHOTOS
Top L, R: 
Sixteenth Street Baptist Church. 

Second L: Kitchen in the basement. At the time of the bombing, it was the changing room used by the four little girls. Their bodies were recovered from this location. R: The area inside the church, above the kitchen, damaged by the bomb.
Third L:  The church sanctuary. R: The four little girls killed in the church, public domain  

Bottom L: Right side of church after the bombing, Washington PostR: Current view of right side of church.

Color photos taken August 4, 2009.


SOURCES                        
Books
Rubel, David. "The Coming Free: The Struggle for African-American Equality." New York: DK Publishing, 2005. Print.

DVD
Spike Lee. "4 Little Girls.", HBO Home Video, 2001. DVD

Internet
"History of Church Fires." washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/national/longterm/churches/photo3.htm, Web. 15, Jun. 2008.

Lectures
Rudolph, Sarah Collins and Williams, Junie Collins (Peavy). The Civil Rights Movement. Dickinson College. Anita Tuvin Schlechter Auditorium, Carlisle, PA. September 15, 2010. Panel Discussion.

Site Visits
Gravesite. Addie Mae Collins - Greenwood Cemetery, Birmingham, AL. 4 Aug. 2009.
Gravesite. Carole Rosamond Robertson - Greenwood Cemetery, Birmingham, AL. 4 Aug. 2009.
Gravesite. Cynthia Dionne Wesley - Greenwood Cemetery, Birmingham, AL. 4 Aug. 2009.
Gravesite. Carol Denise McNair - Elmwood Cemetery, Birmingham, AL. 4 Aug. 2009.
16th Street Baptist Church Tour. Birmingham, AL. 4 Aug. 2009.

Posted to website: August 17, 2008.


Vernon AME Church

311 N. Greenwood Avenue Greenwood District
Tulsa, OK 74120
918- 587-1428

Vernon AME Church, founded in 1905 is one of Greenwood's oldest churches. The congregation was in the process of building a new church when the building was burned to the ground during the destruction of  Tulsa in 1921 by its white residents. Determined to move forward, the congregation used existing funds and donations to rebuild the church's basement on the same site before the end of 1922. The church was completed in 1928 and still stands at the same location.


PHOTO
Vernon AME Church.  

Picture taken December 22, 2008.

 

SOURCES                       
Lecture
Newman, Princetta. The History of Tulsa, Oklahoma. Various locations throughout Tulsa, Tulsa, OK. 22 Dec. 2008. Discussion/Tour

Site Visit
Vernon AME Church. Tulsa, OK. 22 Dec. 2008.

Posted to website: May 15, 2009.


 

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