Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church, Montgomery

Religious Site · Historic Site
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Dexter Avenue Baptist Church is a Baptist church in Montgomery, Alabama, United States. The church was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1974. On January 1, 2008 the US Government also submitted it to UNESCO as part of an envisaged future World Heritage nomination and as such it is on the so-called UNESCO 'Tentative List of World Heritage Sites'. In 1978 the official name was changed to the Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church, in memory of Martin Luther King Jr., who helped to organize the Montgomery Bus Boycott in the church's basement. The church is located steps away from the Alabama State Capitol.
The Dexter Avenue Baptist Church congregation was organized in 1877 and was first known as the Second Colored Baptist Church. The church trustees paid $270 on January 30, 1879 for a lot at the corner of what is now Dexter Avenue and Decatur Street. The first church building was a small wood-frame building, it began to be replaced by the current structure in 1883. The new brick building was not completed until 1889. The church began serving the broader African American community on October 3, 1887 when it hosted the first registration of students for Alabama State University. This community service continued into the 20th century with activities associated with the American Civil Rights Movement. In 1899, Selma University cofounder William H. McAlpine became pastor. Vernon Johns, an early leader of the Civil Rights Movement, served as pastor from 1947 to 1952. He was succeeded by Martin Luther King, Jr., who was pastor of the church from 1954 to 1960, and organized the Montgomery Bus Boycott from his basement office.
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Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
479 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • What could anyone say? I stood where Martin Luther King, Jr. stood so many times. I was on hallowed ground. I could almost hear his voice. 
    What could anyone say? I stood where Martin Luther King, Jr. stood so many times. I was on hallowed ground. I could almost hear his voice.  more »
  • Beautiful historical church but unfortunately the still interior isn’t because of Covid. They do have a nice gift shop though so at least check that out. 
    Beautiful historical church but unfortunately the still interior isn’t because of Covid. They do have a nice gift shop though so at least check that out.  more »
  • I wanted to go in but they weren't doing tours since the pandemic. I still drove by many times and stopped to take pictures. Hopefully, when I go back they will be allowing tours. 
    I wanted to go in but they weren't doing tours since the pandemic. I still drove by many times and stopped to take pictures. Hopefully, when I go back they will be allowing tours.  more »
Google
  • I have seen this church on T.V many times during my childhood. I didn't know the church was right across the street from the state capital. Beautiful old building that still serves as a house of worship. Very historic very nice. I recommend seeing this landmark
  • Beautiful. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Martin Luther King, Jr. He who passively accepts evil is as much involved in it as he who helps to perpetrate it. He who accepts evil without protesting against it is really cooperating with it. Martin Luther King, Jr.
  • This is a great area to walk around with so much history. This is a must stop to see where Dr. Luther King preached and to add to your black history information. It was closed when we were there.
  • I'm in awe of Dr Martin Luther King Jr and his work and life for civil rights and his dedication to King Jesus. 😭
  • The church and parsonage are locked and unmanned. No one answers a knock and no one answers the phone. These locations are too historically important to be shuttered. I drove 2 days to come to Montgomery to show up to nothing! If the current management can't open to the public then they should turn the sites over to the national parks department. Ebenezer Baptist does much better job of representing the spirit and history of MLK Jr.

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