Historic Atlanta church sits on proposed site of new stadium - New York News

Historic Atlanta church sits on proposed site of new Falcons stadium

Posted: Updated:
ATLANTA -

One of the downtown churches that must make way for the new Atlanta Falcons stadium says a lot of their history could be lost in the transition.

Friendship Baptist Church was started by slaves more than 150 years ago. Frank Quarles was the first pastor.

"Friendship Baptist church is the oldest black Baptist church in the city Atlanta. It was founded in 1862 by slaves who actually came out of the first Baptist church in Atlanta," said Lloyd Hawk, the Board of Trustee chair.

Hawk said that the bell tower of the church is a signature feature. He said that Spelman College was founded in the church's basement. Morehouse College also once held classes at the church.

"You can't talk about the history of Atlanta without talking about Morehouse or Spelman and you really might not even have Morehouse or Spelman in Atlanta if it was not for Friendship," Hawk said.

In Friendship's 150-year history, the church has only had six pastors. One of the pastors is the father of Atlanta mayor Maynard Jackson; another is the father of well-known actress Jasmine Guy. Her father is still a member.

The problem now is that the historic church sits on prime downtown real estate where the Atlanta Falcon's want to build a multi-million dollar retractable dome.

Chairman Hawk says, if the Falcons and the city select the proposed southern site, Martin Luther King Jr. Drive would be relocated right through the historic sanctuary.

"What we are doing right now is we're waiting for the city to see what they have to offer, but we have been in this community for a 150 years and one thing we have always said is that we will continue to be in this community," Hawk said. .

Hawk says he would like for the bell tower and the facade of the building to remain at the site.

The Falcons tell the church they are looking to put green space there and negotiations are underway.

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • NJ brush fire forces evacuations

    NJ brush fire forces evacuations

    Thursday, April 24 2014 2:04 PM EDT2014-04-24 18:04:00 GMT
    A New Jersey school and several homes were evacuated Thursday afternoon because of a large brush fire that was being fanned by winds.Beachwood Intermediate South School was closed just after 12:30 p.m. Parents were told not to report to the school. The Ocean County Sheriff's Dept. said that all children were going to be safely evacuated to another location.
    A New Jersey school and several homes were evacuated Thursday afternoon because of a large brush fire that was being fanned by winds.Beachwood Intermediate South School was closed just after 12:30 p.m. Parents were told not to report to the school. The Ocean County Sheriff's Dept. said that all children were going to be safely evacuated to another location.
  • Cops swarm home after disgruntled Call of Duty gamer calls in swatting hoax

    Cops swarm home after disgruntled Call of Duty gamer calls in swatting hoax

    Thursday, April 24 2014 12:05 PM EDT2014-04-24 16:05:27 GMT
    Heavily armed police officers descended on a home in Long Beach, Long Island thinking they might find a grisly murder scene. Instead they found a terrified woman who had no clue what they were talking about and her teenaged son playing video games.
    Heavily armed police officers descended on a home in Long Beach, Long Island thinking they might find a grisly murder scene. Instead they found a terrified woman who had no clue what they were talking about and her teenaged son playing video games.
  • Girl fights to bring 22-year-old prom date

    Girl fights to bring 22-year-old prom date

    Thursday, April 24 2014 11:50 AM EDT2014-04-24 15:50:19 GMT
    A Connecticut teenager is appealing to her local Board of Education after school officials rejected her request to bring her 21-year-old boyfriend to her prom.
    A Connecticut teenager is appealing to her local Board of Education after school officials rejected her request to bring her 21-year-old boyfriend to her prom.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices