We Give Thanks For: 175 Years of Spiritual & Civic Service

Friday November 17, 2023

On Sunday, November 19, The Second Baptist Church of Washington, DC will celebrate its 175th Anniversary. All are welcome to join the festivities to be uplifted and marvel at the interior architecture. Located at 816 Third Street NW, Second Baptist Church is one of our community’s longest-standing structures, the oldest of Mount Vernon Triangle’s three historically significant churches, and DC’s second-oldest African American Baptist congregation.

Conceived in 1827 and incorporated in 1848 just 14 years before slaves were freed in DC, Second Baptist Church was one of the few congregations that had a Black minister before President Lincoln’s inauguration in 1861. It served a stop on the Underground Railroad during the Civil War and established a nationally recognized Sunday School Lyceum – at one point considered the largest in the United States – that included Booker T. Washington as a member and hosted orations by notable luminaries such as Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, and Rev. Adam Clayton Powell, Sr.

Today Second Baptist Church is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and Rev. Dr. James Terrell, who serves as pastor, is a long-time member of the MVT CID Board of Directors. We are proud to have such a culturally significant piece of American history here in our neighborhood and congratulate the members of Second Baptist Church on a prosperous 175 years and extend our very best wishes for many more to come!

Read More: