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“Historical”

First African Baptist Church
Ranked #9 of 220 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 June 27, 2014

I was very happy that I was able to visit a place that was an intricate part of history. I want to definitely bring my children back.

Thank LaKeisha W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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491 - 495 of 806 reviews

Reviewed June 25, 2014

Each time we come to Savannah, it seems as if there is never enough time to do all the things we want to. This visit, we made sure not to miss the tour at the First African Baptist Church. This is a "don't"miss" tour during your visit. Plan your day around this tour! The tour will give you a new perspective of African history in the US and you are able to experience the church as the tour is delivered.

Thank DStudio
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 20, 2014

Amazing that a building this old is still a viable church. The story behind this church is wonderful.

Thank Karen A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 18, 2014

Beautiful old church with incredible history. Lydia, the guide, was so informative and friendly. A must stop for any visitor to Savannah.

1  Thank Carolrife
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2014

Some of the Savannah tours fail to tell the whole story or deliberately leave out details about non-whites. On our weekend in Savannah, we were on a mission to find out more about the African American history in Savannah. It is an area rich with hisotry and we barely touched the surface in digging for information. I'm glad we stopped by this church. It was a moving and emotional experience that filled me with great appreciation and pride.

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

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