We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

First African Baptist Church

23 Montgomery St, Savannah, GA 31401-2429
+1 912-233-6597
Review Highlights
We Found Joe!

A group of us were waiting for the 4pm tour last Saturday afternoon and we were fortunate enough... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
Must see!

Joe was an excellent tour guide. He was very knowledgeable and engaging with our group. He made us... read more

Reviewed 3 days ago
via mobile
Read all 820 reviews
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
First African Baptist Church was organized in 1773 under the leadership of Reverend George Leile and established and constituted in December of 1777 as a body organized believers. Under the leadership of the 3rd Pastor Reverend Andrew C. Marshall, the congregation obtained the property where the present sanctuary stands. Marshall also organized the first black Sunday school in North America and changed the name of the church from “First Colored Baptist” to “First African Baptist”. The sanctuary was completed in 1859 under the direction of the 4th Pastor Reverend William J. Campbell. The ceiling of the church is in the design of a “Nine Patch Quilt” which represented that the church was a safe house for slaves. Beneath the lower auditorium floor is another finished sub floor which is known as the “Underground Railroad”. There is 4ft of height between both floors. The holes in the floor are in the shape of an African prayer symbol known as a Congolese Cosmogram that served a purpose of ventilation. First African Baptist Church has been a place of leadership and service since its inception. Reverend Emmanuel King Love, 6th Pastor, led the movement to establish Savannah State University, formerly known as Georgia State Industrial College for Colored Youth. Rev. Love also played a big role in the establishment of Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA and Paine College in Augusta, GA. During the time of segregation the church served as the largest gathering place for blacks and whites to meet. Visitors from all walks of life have visited out sanctuary and left inspired. TOUR RATES: Adults = $7.00; Seniors = $6.00; Students = $6.00; Children Ages 5 & Under = FREE. TOUR HOURS OF OPERATION: Tuesday - Saturday = 11:00 a.m. & 2:00p.m. Sunday = 1:00p.m.
  • Excellent79%
  • Very good15%
  • Average4%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“runaway slaves” (16 reviews)
“tour guide” (77 reviews)
Suggested Duration: < 1 hour
23 Montgomery St, Savannah, GA 31401-2429
+1 912-233-6597
Write a ReviewReviews (820)
Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
  • More languages

1 - 10 of 808 reviews

Reviewed 2 days ago

A group of us were waiting for the 4pm tour last Saturday afternoon and we were fortunate enough that my friend found Joe! The tour guide wasn't available that afternoon, but Joe took the time to give us a tour...and it was GREAT. Joe was...More

Thank krm44
Reviewed 3 days ago via mobile

Joe was an excellent tour guide. He was very knowledgeable and engaging with our group. He made us feel very welcome. The church has a compelling history and Joe shared it very well. Of all the tours you can take in Savannah you won’t want...More

Thank Judiegirl
Reviewed 5 days ago via mobile

Joe graciously gave our group the tour, as he had no choice. I found him and asked if he was our tour guide. He was wonderful, knowledgeable beyond belief. I had never heard anything of the History of Savannah. What I learned from him was...More

Thank Marilyn K
Reviewed 5 days ago

Loved our tour. Our guide, Joe, was very knowledgeable and funny! Lots of history in this simple, unassuming, charming church! Tours are 11:00 am 2:00 and 4:00 pm.

Thank Lynette C
Reviewed 6 days ago via mobile

A tour of this church is a lesson in American history (things they often DON’T teach in schools), and the powerful relationship between religion, racism, slavery/freedom, and social justice. Our tour guide, Joe, has a wealth of knowledge and a spellbinding way of teaching.

Thank penk18
Reviewed 1 week ago

The church tour, which was led by Joe, was very interesting. He provided a rich history of the church with interesting anecdotes about previous pastors and the church's role in the underground railroad. Well worth a visit!

Thank Molly S
Reviewed 1 week ago

Tours at 11:00 am and 2:00 pm - we took 2:00 pm. Our guide was a local professor who was very knowledgeable about the history surrounding Savannah and this church - history of Africans brought here in general. Fantastic lesson on myth vs. the history.

Thank aehamilton54
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

So interesting and such a beautiful building shows so much pride a must see for everyone who visits Savannah!

Reviewed 5 weeks ago

The history of this church is amazing! That's really what the tour consists of. The guide, Joe, was awesome! He had a great sense of humor and really knew his Church!

Thank beelikeme
Reviewed 13 January 2018 via mobile

I only visited it form the outside. Worth reading about this piece of history and visiting if in Savannah and in the area.

Thank solofishergal
Nearby HotelsSee all 116 hotels in Savannah
DoubleTree by Hilton Savannah Historic District
1,469 reviews
.04 km away
Hilton Garden Inn Savannah Historic District
1,918 reviews
.07 km away
Quality Inn Savannah Historic District
157 reviews
.09 km away
Best Western Savannah Historic District
1,511 reviews
.09 km away
Nearby Restaurants
Pie Society
640 reviews
.11 km away
Savannah Candy Kitchen
326 reviews
.07 km away
Lulu's Chocolate Bar
933 reviews
.13 km away
1,236 reviews
.12 km away
Nearby Attractions
American Prohibition Museum
172 reviews
.17 km away
City Market
1,965 reviews
.12 km away
Ships of the Sea Maritime Museum
592 reviews
.13 km away
Ask a question
Questions & Answers
21 December 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from penk18 | Reviewed this property |
Yes, church services are open to the public. But that said, if you don’t take the tour and learn from the guides, you are missing out on something powerful and extraordinary.
19 July 2017|
AnswerShow all 10 answers
Response from Jusagagirl | Reviewed this property |
Yes there is .. the cost is $7.00 seniors and students are $6.00 . They do the tours Tuesday and Thursdays 11-1 Wednesday, Friday & Saturday 11-2 you can call just to make sure nothing has changed since I was there... More
23 April 2017|
Response from 1FABC | Property representative |
Greetings! Our tour times are 11am and 2pm Tuesday - Saturday and 1pm on Sunday. The fee is $7.00 per adult and $6.00 per senior, student, or military. The fee for groups of 10 or more people is $6.00 per person and... More