The Ground Breaking Ceremony for Friendship Baptist Church was held on Sunday, October 18, at 4 pm. CDH is the architect for this historical church. Friendship Baptist Church was established in 1862 and independently organized in 1866, in the days following the Civil War. Friendship is Atlanta’s first black Baptist autonomous congregation. The church began in a discarded railroad boxcar that was donated by a Cincinnati, Ohio, church. The boxcar served as a worship space on Sundays. By 1865, it was used for early classes at the burgeoning Atlanta University.
The membership grew rapidly so the congregation moved to a larger building on the corner of Haynes and Markham Streets and later to the Mitchell Street location.
Friendship’s role in black education has been unique and very important. In 1879, after Morehouse College moved to Atlanta from Augusta, classes were held at Friendship Baptist Church. Years later in 1881, Spelman College had its beginning in the basement of the Mitchell Street site. Close ties between these educational institutions and Friendship Baptist Church continue today. —Taken from the Ground Breaking program produced by Friendship Baptist Church
The new building should be completed in spring 2017.