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“Great historical tour”

First African Baptist Church
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Savannah Black History Tour
Ranked #9 of 210 things to do in Savannah
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: <1 hour
Owner description: First African Baptist Church was organized in 1773 under the leadership of Reverend George Leile and established and constituted in December of 1777 as a body organized believers. Under the leadership of the 3rd Pastor Reverend Andrew C. Marshall, the congregation obtained the property where the present sanctuary stands. Marshall also organized the first black Sunday school in North America and changed the name of the church from “First Colored Baptist” to “First African Baptist”. The sanctuary was completed in 1859 under the direction of the 4th Pastor Reverend William J. Campbell. The ceiling of the church is in the design of a “Nine Patch Quilt” which represented that the church was a safe house for slaves. Beneath the lower auditorium floor is another finished sub floor which is known as the “Underground Railroad”. There is 4ft of height between both floors. The holes in the floor are in the shape of an African prayer symbol known as a Congolese Cosmogram that served a purpose of ventilation. First African Baptist Church has been a place of leadership and service since its inception. Reverend Emmanuel King Love, 6th Pastor, led the movement to establish Savannah State University, formerly known as Georgia State Industrial College for Colored Youth. Rev. Love also played a big role in the establishment of Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA and Paine College in Augusta, GA. During the time of segregation the church served as the largest gathering place for blacks and whites to meet. Visitors from all walks of life have visited out sanctuary and left inspired. TOUR RATES: Adults = $7.00; Seniors = $6.00; Students = $6.00; Children Ages 5 & Under = FREE. TOUR HOURS OF OPERATION: Tuesday - Saturday = 11:00 a.m. & 2:00p.m. Sunday = 1:00p.m.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
39 reviews
31 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Great historical tour”
Reviewed June 27, 2013 via mobile

We really enjoyed this tour. The entire reasoner travel to savannah was to do this tour as our daughter read a book in school about this church and their role in the Underground Railroad. Plan ahead as they only offer tours in certain days at 1100 and 2:00.
We had a great tour guide who is a member of this church and a local high school social studies teacher. She was very knowledgeable about the history of the church but provided an entertaining experience. The depth of history in this building. This is a definite must see.

Visited June 2013
Thank TeamNickle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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673 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Nuevo Arenal, Costa Rica
Level Contributor
25 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Take this Tour!”
Reviewed June 24, 2013

We missed the last tour on our last full day, but changed our departure plans the next day in order to make the 11:00 am tour. SO glad we did. The young man giving the tour was so knowledgable and passionate about his church. We learned the history of it, and were able to view the church from top to bottom - there's a small museum in the basement, and you'll learn the story behind the holes in the wooden floor down there. A must-see when you visit Savannah.

Visited May 2013
1 Thank SharonTM1123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Oviedo, Florida
Level Contributor
27 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“A must see”
Reviewed June 22, 2013

We visited briefly on 6/16/013 during Sunday service, so we were not able to explore. It was good to be in this historical building and feeling the presence of our ancestors.

Visited June 2013
Thank Michele M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Nashville, Tennessee
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“First African Baptist Church”
Reviewed June 20, 2013

The history of the church was very interesting and educational. The tour guide was knowledgeable, personal and a great presenter of all the information.

Visited June 2013
Thank Loretta W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
14 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Very moving!”
Reviewed June 19, 2013

Just walking into the building is very moving, knowing that it was built by slaves FOR slaves. There was a service in progress so we didn't explore too much but just climbing up the steps gave a sense of being in a historical place worthy of a visit, regardless of religious beliefs.

Visited June 2013
Thank Travelbug061949
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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