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First Baptist Church, Minneapolis

Baptist meetings were initially held in 1853 in the home of Asa Fletcher, Subsequent meetings were held in a variety of locations, including another building owned by Fletcher on Portland Ave, and a hall on Helen Street (later 2nd Avenue) on the river. (A full list appears in Atwater's History of Minneapolis). The congregation erected a church in 1858 on a lot given to them by the Hon. Henry t. Wells, at Third Street and Nicollet Avenue. In 1865 the congregation razed the unsafe building and exchanged the lot for another at Hennepin and Fifth. They held services in Harrison Hall until a new church building was completed in 1868. This building was later sold and a new church at Tenth and Harmon Place was completed in 1887. This building remains extant in 2015 although it has been remodeled several times. 

The congregration sponsored several daughter groups, including Union Church (later Central Baptist) in 1861, First Swedish Baptist in 1871, Fourth Baptist (18??), Calvary Baptist in 1883, Emmanuel Baptist, Trinity Baptist and Windom Park Baptist. According to the WPA Report Wallace and Hallgrain (February 1936), in 1869, the congregation also established the first Sunday School for African Americans in the basement of the church at Fifth Street and Hennepin Avenue.



WPA Report. Wallace and Hallgrain. February 1836. Minnesota Historical Society.