It’s been 150 years since a group of former slaves banded together, just days after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation, to found a church that has stood the test of time.
Sunday marks the sesquicentennial celebration of the Shiloh Baptist Church at 1500 Ninth Street in Northwest Washington.
The church is celebrating its 150th anniversary milestone with a ribbon cutting ceremony that D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray is scheduled to attend.
Shiloh’s roots can be traced to 21 slaves who settled in Washington after leaving Fredericksburg, Virginia. At the height of the Civil War, the group established a Sunday school that transformed over the years into an integral part of the community.
The church has served as a witness to history in 150 years, according to the Church’s Website, hosting an array of activists and leaders, including W.E.B DuBois, Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dr. Billy Graham, and several U.S. presidents.