March 22, 2022

First African Baptist Church St. Simons: One of the Island's Oldest and Most Significant Places of Worship

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Photos by:

article & photos by:

Allie Albanese

Article by:

Photos by:

article & photos by:

Allie Albanese

The First African Baptist Church is the oldest Black church on St. Simons Island and an important symbol of the island's religious history.

Small, white, wooden First African Baptist church surrounded by large oak trees draped in Spanish moss with a white picket fence and blooming pink hydrangeas in the foreground

If you’ve ever been to St. Simons Island you know that there is no shortage of churches to be found, some of which were established as far back as the early 1800s. Religion played a important role in the founding and development of this island, and many people say that the spiritual strength of its various religious communities serves as its foundation.

One of the oldest and most significant churches on the island is First African Baptist Church, which was founded and built by slaves from the many St. Simons Island plantations. The congregation organized in 1859, and worshipped together at a small tabby church near their quarters at West Point Plantation until the church pictured here was built in 1869. Members traveled from all over the island to attend worship here every Sunday, which was not an easy feat considering the island is 12-miles long and most had to travel by foot.

Since that time, First African Baptist Church (‘Where All God’s Children Are Welcome’) has continued to hold worship services every Sunday, and for 163 years has been fulfilling its mission to serve the needs of all its members. Although not often listed as a tourist destination for people visiting the Golden Isles, this church is an important part of the island’s culture and its history.

VISITOR INFO:

📍 5800 Frederica Road (not open for tours)

⛪ Sunday School 9:30 AM | Sunday Worship 11:00 AM

📆 Tuesday Bible Study 12:00 PM and 7:00 PM | Thursday Prayer 10:00 AM

Small, white, wooden First African Baptist church surrounded by large oak trees draped in Spanish moss with blooming pink hydrangeas in the foreground

First African Baptist Church St. Simons: One of the Island's Oldest and Most Significant Places of Worship

The First African Baptist Church is the oldest Black church on St. Simons Island and an important symbol of the island's religious history.

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Small, white, wooden First African Baptist church surrounded by large oak trees draped in Spanish moss with blooming pink hydrangeas in the foreground

First African Baptist Church St. Simons: One of the Island's Oldest and Most Significant Places of Worship

The First African Baptist Church is the oldest Black church on St. Simons Island and an important symbol of the island's religious history.

Yields:

No items found.

Ingredients:

Instructions:

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