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“A must see”

First African Baptist Church
Ranked #9 of 218 things to do in Savannah
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
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.
Reviewed July 25, 2013

No American should miss visiting this landmark. Full of African American history, brings to light both the plight and devotion of the African slave.

1  Thank roadiepeeps
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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589 - 593 of 803 reviews

Reviewed July 22, 2013

Loved the church and its wonderful history! We were guided by Day Clean Journeys. Excellent! No dislikes

Thank Shirley Z
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 18, 2013

What a rich and informative tour! We were also invited to come back for a Sunday service, "come as you are." Our guide was a young lady on summer vacation from teaching school, she was very informative. This church and congegation has a remarkable story!

Thank barbjo30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 18, 2013

I really enjoyed this and was worth 10 times more than what we paid... Im impressed with the knowledge and history of the church.. I was amazed at the fact that it was built by slaves along with performing their daily duties! Makes you appreciate those that came before you even more!

Thank SugarKane1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 16, 2013

Johnny's tour was informative and interesting, I don't want to spoil too much -- but if you're in Savannah for any reason at all, you owe it to yourself and this country's history to go on a tour of this church. You won't be disappointed, even if you're not a history buff - this is one institution you should not pass up.

Thank SolarEffigy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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