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South Main Street Churches

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c. 1890 First Baptist Church; 1901 Beulah African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME). 100 and 115 S. Main St.
  • First Baptist Church (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • First Baptist Church (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • First Baptist Church (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • Beulah AME Church (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • Beulah AME Church (Photograph by Mark Mones)
  • Beulah AME Church (Photograph by Mark Mones)

Two predominately Black churches founded in the half decade after the Civil War are representative of the plain but styled buildings constructed for less wealthy congregations. The First Baptist Church (100 S. Main) is a rectangular, gable-end structure with a central front entrance tower, all done in stock brick with cream mortar. The windows have pointed arches except for a circular window in the tower. Beulah AME (115 S. Main) has a restrained Gothic Revival facade. Built of pressed brick with red mortar, it has a multistage tower beside the pedimented gable-end front. Both churches were active in the civil rights movement, and First Baptist's Reverend L. Francis Griffin was Southside's principal desegregation leader.

Writing Credits

Anne Carter Lee



  • 1889

    First Baptist Church built
  • 1901

    Beulah AME built

What's Nearby


Anne Carter Lee, "South Main Street Churches", [Farmville, Virginia], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Virginia vol 2

Buildings of Virginia: Valley, Piedmont, Southside, and Southwest, Anne Carter Lee and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2015, 267-267.

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