Ebenezer Baptist Church
407-413 Auburn Avenue
Martin Luther King, Jr. Historic District
Rebuilt: After 1917 fire in 1922
Architectural Style: Gothic Revival
Original Use: This building became a meeting place for social and spiritual activism by means of three generations of pastors starting with Rev. A.D. Williams in 1894, to his son Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr. and then to his son, Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Readaptive Use: Still functions as a church.
1886 - Rev. John Parker organizes the Ebenezer Baptist Church on Airline Street. The church later purchased
property on the corner of Auburn and Jackson Streets.
1894 to 1931 - Powerhouse A.D. Williams is minister; his daughter marries Rev. Martin Luther King, Sr.;
Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was her 2nd child.
1917 - Church burns in Atlanta fire of 1917.
1918 - James Weldon Johnson of the N.Y. office of the NAACP assists Harry H. Pace, Truman K. Gibson, and other
concerned citizens with the Atlanta Branch. Rev. A.D. Williams, pastor of Ebenezer, is elected president;
Professor George E. Towns, vice president; Dr. Leondias Crogman, Secretary. Meetings are held every
1919 - As President of the of the local branch of the NAACP Rev. A.D. Williams spearheaded the first voter
registration drive among blacks in modern Atlanta producing more than 2,000 voters, some of whom had to
pay $25.00 in back poll taxes. These black votes helped defeat a bond referendum that would have provided
construction of whites school s only.
1921 - The Atlanta Branch of the NAACP with Rev. A.D. Williams registers 3,000 African American citizens to help
defeat an 8 million dollar bond issue until the city agrees how much of the money African Americans will get
for their schools. As a result the African American. community gets 2.5 million dollars and the following
schools are constructed: E.A.Ware, David T. Howard, Yonge Street, Crogman, Walker Street, Ashby Street, and
Booker T. Washington.
1929 - Martin Luther King, Jr. is born.
1931 - 1975 Rev. A.D. Williams dies in 1931 and son-in-law Rev. Martin King, Sr. (Daddy King) carries on to build a
Late 1930's - From Parting the Waters by Taylor Branch p53-54.
1960-1968 - Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is co-pastor with his father Rev. Martin King, Sr.
1961 - From Parting the Waters by Taylor Branch p301-302.
1961 - From Parting the Waters by Taylor Branch, p477.
Present: This National Historic Landmark is under renovation to handle increasing crowd sizes; it is managed by
the National Park Service; the New Ebenezer Baptist Church is across the street and merges many African
design elements into its sanctuary and exterior architecture.