Historic Markers Across Alabama

Mount Gillard Baptist Church

Marker ID: AHA 
Location: 8376 US Highway 80 West, Tyler, AL
County: Lowndes
Coordinates: N 32° 16.457    W 086° 44.816
  32.27428333    -86.74693333
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMWG9B


Mount Gillard
Baptist Church

The roots of this house of worship date to 1868 when 26 African American members of Mount Gilead Church left to form their own congregation. The present building was constructed in 1901, with several enlargements and renovations throughout the twentieth century.

Located along the route of the historic Selma-to-Montgomery March, Mount Gillard is known as the "Mother Church" of the Lowndes County civil rights movement. Its members were committed to equality and suffrage; theirs was the first church in the county to host civil rights demonstrations and mass meetings. The Lowndes County Christian Movement for Human Rights held its inaugural gathering in the church on March 28, 1965. The meeting occurred three days after the nearby murder of civil rights worker Viola Liuzzo. The group's political arm, the Lowndes County Freedom Organization recruited a slate of African American candidates for public office in the election of 1966. The Lowndes County Anti-Poverty Action Committee was also organized here. Mount Gillard congregants were active in each organization.

The church was listed on the Alabama Register of Historic Places in 2003.

Erected by the Alabama Historical Association

End of Mount Gillard Baptist Church