Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Opening paragraphs.............................

     Nearly seven hundred Negro communicants, some wearing white robes, marched together in the exodus of 1867.  They followed the white preacher out of the First Baptist Church and north through town to Columbus Street, then east up the muddy hill to Ripley Street.  There on that empty site, the congregation declared itself the First Baptist Church (Colored), with appropriate prayers and ceremonies, and a former slave named Nathan Ashby became the first minister of an independent Negro Baptist church in Montgomery, Alabama.
-Taylor Branch,  Parting the Waters:  America in the King Years  1954-63

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