Shiloh Baptist Church 271 King Street St. Augustine Florida
Beginnings The church was a split from the St. James Baptist Church on Cathedral Place in March 1928. Rev. Whittiaker organized the church in February 17, 1929. He would remain pastor until 1936. They first met in a two story building on the second floor at the corner of West King and Whitney. Then later in 1929 they moved to a store which was located on their current lot. The building was used until 1937. The first deacons were George Morgan, R. H. Fields, Willie Jenkins, Arthur Pathe and E. J. Brooks. The trustees were B. Marshall, D. Andrews and B. Albert. The church was affilated with the National Baptist Convention of the United States of America Inc.
The original sanctuary was built on this site and completed in November 1937 by Rev. E. F. Hankerson. Rev. Hankerson was a graduate of Florida Normal and Industrial School. L. Royster was the architect of the building. The ground was given by Leapheart. It was a rectangular wood building built on concrete block piers painted white.
Building Rebuilt The building was reerected on August 9, 1992 by Rev. J. A. Wright. The deacons were W. Swain, C. Holley, G. Pitts, J. Warner, and J. Crooms. The trustees were Bro. W. Swain, Sister L. B. Swain, Sister E. Jenkins, Sister E. L. Tobler and Sister M. Turner.
The M. W. U. G. L. Pha. of Florida S. D. W. S. Mt. Hored Lorde #20 of the Masons with W. M. Bro. Lacy, D. D. Moses Kings were part of the dedication.
The Civil Rights marker in front of the church reads: Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church 271 W. King Street ~New Augustine~ This spiritual and civic citadel was established in 1929 with Rev. R.H. Whittaker as spiritual leader, and Chairman of the Board of Deacons, D.P. Mims. This church, the gateway to New Augustine, experienced phenomenal growth under the inspired leadership of Rev. J.A. Wright, beginning in 1955 -- becoming a spiritual beacon of New Augustine and emerging leader and light of civic pride in The Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s. Among the VANGUARD OF CIVIL RIGHTS, and Shiloh Baptist communicants, were the following: Marie Smith, Pauline Williams, Valerie Brown, Isabelle Jenkins, Valjean Brown, Mary Mitchell, Gloria Washington, Christine Brown, Sophronie Miller, and Ethel Jenkins.
Andrew Young Andrew Young spoke at Shiloh Baptist Church. He told the marchers that they would have no protection from the police. He told them that "Now is the time to turn around, for any of you that don' want to go. We won't think ill of you, we won't talk about you, but some of us must go on." When they began praying a woman started singing "Be Not Dismayed, What E'er Be the Tide, God Will Take Care of You." Andrew Young started out the door and headed toward the slave market downtown.
Alberta Walker Bell, St. Augustine, passed away Dec. 4, 2008, at home. Mrs. Bell was born in Savannah, Ga., on June 10, 1912, to the late Raymond J. Walker and Martha Bossell Walker of Savannah. Mrs. Bell and her family moved to St. Augustine in 1920 where she resided until her death. She was active in her church, Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church and loved to cook and work in her garden. She was previously employed by the Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind before she retired in the late 1980s.
The Rev. Willie J. Pittman, 57, of Jacksonville, Fla., passed away on May 25, 2011, in the care of Memorial Hospital. He was the assistant pastor of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church for the past 15 years under the Rev. Randy Hezekiah Jr.
Marie Sims, "Aunt Re" Smith, 101, went from labor to reward on Sept. 23, 2010, at Flagler Hospital. She was a member of Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church, where she served as on the Deaconess Board, the Missionary Society and had the honor of serving as Church Mother. She was active in the NAACP and the Civil Rights Movement. Her services will be at noon, Saturday, Oct. 2, 2010, at Shiloh MB Church with the Rev. Randy Hezekiah officiating.
Elizabeth Wilkerson, 88, departed this life on Wednesday, June 12, 2013, in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., she was born Feb. 24, 1925. She was a member of Shiloh Baptist Church.
Photo: Google Earth