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Savannah in Chatham County, Georgia — The American South (South Atlantic)
 

First African Baptist Church

 
 
First African Baptist Church Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, April 28, 2019
1. First African Baptist Church Marker
Inscription.  First African Baptist Church (FABC) traces its roots to 1773 and the organization of a congregation at nearby Brampton Plantation by Rev. George Leile. Under the leadership of Rev. Andrew C. Marshall (3rd pastor), the congregation obtained this property. Constructed of Savannah Grey brick by congregants, both free and enslaved, the current building was completed in 1859. Rev. Emanuel K. Love (6th pastor), an advocate for African-American education and civil rights, was instrumental in establishing today's Savannah State University. Rev. Dr. Ralph Mark Gilbert (13th pastor) was a prominent leader of the NAACP and the revival of the Savannah chapter in the 1940s. U.S. Representative Adam Clayton Powell of Harlem and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. are among the noteworthy speakers hosted here. FABC is one of the oldest continuously operating African-American churches in North America.
Erected by the Georgia Historical Society
and First African Baptist Church
2017.4 • 25-56

 
Erected 2017 by Georgia Historical Society and First African Baptist Church. (Marker Number
First African Baptist Church Marker (<i>wide view; marker visible in front of church at left</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, April 28, 2019
2. First African Baptist Church Marker (wide view; marker visible in front of church at left)
25-56.)
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Georgia Historical Society/Commission marker series.
 
Location. 32° 4.879′ N, 81° 5.757′ W. Marker is in Savannah, Georgia, in Chatham County. Marker is at the intersection of West Bryan Street and Montgomery Street, on the left when traveling west on West Bryan Street. Marker is located beside the walkway near the northwest corner of Savannah's Franklin Square, overlooking the subject church. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 23 Montgomery Street, Savannah GA 31401, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. A different marker also named The First African Baptist Church (a few steps from this marker); Haitian Monument (a few steps from this marker); Jonathan Bryan (within shouting distance of this marker); John Ryan's Excelsior Bottle Works (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); William Scarbrough House (about 400 feet away); The First Act of Alcohol Prohibition in America (about 500 feet away); Evacuation of Savannah (about 500 feet away); John Herndon “Johnny” Mercer (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Savannah.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. First African Baptist Church
 
Also see . . .
First African Baptist Church (<i>front detail</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, April 28, 2019
3. First African Baptist Church (front detail)

1. The Oldest Black Church in North America. First African Baptist Church (1773) is older than the United States (1776). In May of 1775 Rev. Leile was ordained as the pastor and December of 1777 the church was officially constituted as a body of organized believers. In 1782, rather than risk reenslavement, Pastor Leile left with the British when Savannah was evacuated and migrated to Jamaica. (Submitted on April 28, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 

2. Savannah’s History: First African Baptist Church. The congregation worshiped in a wooden structure from 1832 to 1855, until they tore it down to build the church that stands today. It took four years before construction was complete under Reverend William Campbell, who was a carpenter and became the fourth pastor in 1856. Upon completion of the church, the doors were painted red to indicate ownership of the building. (Submitted on April 28, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. African AmericansChurches & ReligionCivil RightsEducation
 
First African Baptist Church<br>(<i>stained glass detail</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, April 28, 2019
4. First African Baptist Church
(stained glass detail)
Rev. George Leile
Our Founder & First Pastor
1775-1782
First African Baptist Church (<i>northeast corner view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, April 28, 2019
5. First African Baptist Church (northeast corner view)
 

More. Search the internet for First African Baptist Church.
 
Credits. This page was last revised on April 28, 2019. This page originally submitted on April 28, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 65 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on April 28, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.
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