Michigan Street Baptist Church

Michigan Street Baptist Church (HM1JGG)

Location: Buffalo, NY 14203 Erie County
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Country: United States of America
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N 42° 53.18', W 78° 52.047'

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Underground Railroad Heritage Trail

The Michigan Street Baptist Church is the oldest building in Buffalo built and continuously owned and occupied by the city's black residents. The congregation, formed in 1836, raised enough maney to construct their own church in 1844. Reverend Samuel H. Davis, the Congregation's fifth pastor, was a mason and performed the majority of the work himself. The cornerstone was laid on the first Sabbath in June 1845. Buffalo was a major center of African American life, Underground Railroad support, and antislavery activism. The Michigan Street congregation engaged boldly in antislavery activities and many of its members had escaped from slavery. Its 1842 resolution condemned slavery as "opposed to the spirit of the Gospel and Principles of Justice." National Negro Conventions were held periodically (sometimes annually) during the 1830s to 1860s. Church members participated as delegates to the National Convention of Colored Citizens in Buffalo, 1843. As keynote speaker, THe Reverend Samuel H. Davis addressed this convention. He called on delegates to fight for their own rights: "We ourselves, must be willing to contend for the rich boon of freedom and equal rights, or we shall never enjoy that boon." Reverend Samuel H. Davis (1810-1907) both built the church and ministered to the congregation. Rev. Samuel H. Davis is buried in the British American Institute Cemetery, part of the Uncle Tom's Cabin Historic Site near Dresden, Ontario, Canada. Courtesy of descendants Mr. William Richardson and Ms. Martha Susan Prescod. Michigan Street Baptist Church, ca. 1900. Courtesy of the Buffalo and Erie County Historical Society.
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, March 7th, 2015 at 5:01pm PST -08:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)17T E 674143 N 4750398
Decimal Degrees42.88633333, -78.86745000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 42° 53.18', W 78° 52.047'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds42° 53' 10.8" N, 78° 52' 2.82" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)716
Which side of the road?Marker is on the right when traveling North
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 511 Michigan Ave, Buffalo NY 14203, US
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