African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1792- )

Originally established as The African Church, The African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas was founded in 1792 by and for persons of African descent to foster personal and religious freedoms and self-determination. The original African Church was an outgrowth of the Free African Society, a … Read MoreAfrican Episcopal Church of St. Thomas Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (1792- )

Henrietta S. Bowers Duterte (1817-1903)

Henrietta Smith Bowers Duterte (pronounced Dew-tier), the first female undertaker in the nation, was born free in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She was one of 13 children born to John Bowers and Henrietta Smith Bowers in July 1817. The Bowers family was originally from Baltimore, Maryland but … Read MoreHenrietta S. Bowers Duterte (1817-1903)

Samuel Younge (“Sammy”) Leamon, Jr. (1944-1966)

“Image Ownership: Public Domain” Samuel (“Sammy”) Leamon Younge Jr. was a young civil rights activist who was shot to death on January 3, 1966 when he attempted to use a whites-only restroom at a gas station in Macon County, Alabama. He was 21 years old.  … Read MoreSamuel Younge (“Sammy”) Leamon, Jr. (1944-1966)

St. Philip’s Protestant Episcopal Church, New York City, New York (1809- )

“Image Ownership: Public Domain” St. Philip’s Protestant Episcopal Church was the first African American Episcopal parish in New York City, New York.  It was also one of the largest Christian congregations in the United States at one time. The church originated from the meetings of … Read MoreSt. Philip’s Protestant Episcopal Church, New York City, New York (1809- )

The Church of St. Mark, Brooklyn, New York (1838- )

The Church of St. Mark in Brooklyn, New York was originally established by a group of black Episcopalians in 1838.  The next year, Dr. Samuel M. Haskins was asked to be rector (pastor), the role he would maintain for 60 years.  By April 1841 the … Read MoreThe Church of St. Mark, Brooklyn, New York (1838- )

Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church, New Haven, Connecticut (1844- )

Established on June 7, 1844, Saint Luke’s Episcopal Church of New Haven, Connecticut, is the third oldest black Episcopal Church in the United States.  Born of the righteous indignation of its founding members over continuing acts of racial discrimination meted out by the white vestry … Read MoreSaint Luke’s Episcopal Church, New Haven, Connecticut (1844- )

Barbara C. Harris (1930- )

Religious leader Barbara Clementine Harris was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to Walter and Beatrice (Price) Harris on June 12, 1930. After graduating from the Charles Morris Price School of Advertising and Journalism, she joined Joseph V. Baker Associates, Inc., a black-owned public relations firm in … Read MoreBarbara C. Harris (1930- )