First Baptist Church (Philadelphia)

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First Baptist Church of Philadelphia

First Baptist Church of Philadelphia is a Baptist church founded in 1698 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States.

Contents

History

The First Baptist Church of Philadelphia began on December 11, 1698 in a small abandoned building in Philadelphia known as the Barbadoes Storehouse. The congregation obtained a new meeting place at Anthony Morris' Brewhouse at the corner of Water and Dock Streets. [1]

In 1707, the congregation took over the Keithian Quaker Meeting House at Second and Market Streets. In 1731 the meeting house was replaced by a brick building called LaGrange Place. In 1808, LaGrange Place was replaced by a larger structure.

In 1761, Morgan Edwards emigrated from England to become pastor at the First Baptist Church. [2] He went on to become largely responsible for the establishment of Rhode Island College which became Brown University.

Samuel Miles, a military officer in the American Revolutionary War and mayor of Philadelphia was a deacon in the church.

In 1806, William Staughton became pastor at the church. [3] Staughton went on to become the president of Columbian College (now George Washington University) in 1823.

William Bucknell, the wealthy businessman and benefactor to Bucknell University, was a trustee to the church. [4]

Robert Lowry, professor of literature, Baptist minister and composer of gospel hymns, was baptized at First Baptist Church and taught in one of the church's missions Sunday Schools. [5]

In 1864, George Dana Boardman became pastor and led the congregation for 30 years. Boardman was known as an abolitionist and a strong supporter of the Union. Boardman lectured at the University of Pennsylvania where he also served as University Chaplain and on the Board of Trustees. Boardman served four terms as President of the American Baptist Missionary Union. He published over 150 books, monographs, lectures and other papers. [6]

Dr. William Williams Keen, known as "the father of American surgery", was a deacon of First Baptist Church throughout his life. [7]

The current church at 17th and Sansom was built in 1900 and is a blend of Byzantine and Romanesque styles. [8]

In 2014, the First Baptist Church was sold due to dwindling financial resources and a challenging building maintenance schedule. The church was sold to the Liberti Church, a member congregation in the Reformed Church in America. The First Baptist Church congregation still worships in the church under a lease agreement with the Liberti Church. [9]

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References

  1. "History at First Baptist Church". www.firstbaptistphiladelphia.org. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  2. Spencer, David (1877). The Early Baptists of Philadelphia. Philadelphia: William Sycklemoore. p. 85. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  3. Lynd, Samuel W. (1834). Memoir of the Rev. William Staughton. Cincinnati: Lincoln,Edmands & Company. p.  57 . Retrieved 23 October 2017.
  4. Skaler, Robert Morris (2008). Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square. Charleston, South Carolina: Arcadia Publishing. p. 28. ISBN   978-0-7385-5743-4 . Retrieved 14 October 2017.
  5. Burrage, Henry S. (1888). Baptist hymn writers and their hymns. Portland, ME: B. Thurston & Co. p. 428. Retrieved 24 October 2017.
  6. Brackney, William H. (2009). The A to Z of the Baptists. Lanham, Toronto, Plymouth UK: Scarecrow Press. pp. 97–98. ISBN   9780810870710 . Retrieved 24 October 2017.
  7. McCallum, Jack Edward (2008). Military Medicine: From Ancient Times to the 21st Century. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO, Inc. p. 177. ISBN   978-1-85109-693-0 . Retrieved 24 October 2017.
  8. Adams III, Charles J. "A day away at First Baptist Church in Philadelphia". www.readingeagle.com. Retrieved 22 October 2017.
  9. Jameson, Norman. "A Philadelphia story, with a bright future". www.baptistnews.com. Retrieved 22 October 2017.

Coordinates: 39°57′02″N75°10′08″W / 39.950608°N 75.168841°W / 39.950608; -75.168841