Calvary Baptist Church
By the 1890’s, Salt Lake City’s small Black population had gained sufficient numbers to encourage the formation and support of independent institutions that provided African-Americans with the opportunity to give greater meaning to their lives. In addressing their spiritual needs, a group of Blacks who identified themselves as the Baptist Prayer Band, met and held worship services in their homes. In June of 1896, Rev A. E. Reynolds announced in the “Broad Ax” ( a Black newspaper) that a building located in the rear of a white church was available as a place of worship for Black Baptists. In January of 1898, Rev D. Jones arrived in Salt Lake City from Topeka, Kansas to pastor Calvary Missionary Baptist Church. He was replaced in 1901 by Rev J.W. Washington, an energetic person whose leadership was instrumental in the church’s growth during his tenure. On Sunday, Jun 29th, 1902, the pastor and members of the congregation gave an afternoon and evening reception at their new chapel located at 472 East Second South. In 1911, the Eastside Baptist Church site was purchased by the Calvary congregation from Emmanuel Baptist Church. The first services were held on February 5th at 679 East Third South locations. Rev. Allen Newman pastored the church from 1913 to 1915.
In 1921, under the leadership of Rev. George Hart, the Calvary Church was incorporated by the State of Utah. Between 1924 and 1954, Calvary had eight pastors. In 1951, the Articles of Incorporation were revised and approved by the membership. The Rev. William I. Monroe served as pastor of Calvary from 1954 to 1967. During his tenure, the church made great strides in terms of its membership and financial condition. On November 3, 1966 the Calvary congregation joyfully marched from their former worship place at Third South and Seventh East to the building presently occupied at 532 East Seventh South. Special services culminated the activities of this day. In 1974, Rev France A. Davis was installed as pastor of Calvary. Pastor Davis has served the congregation for a longer period than any of his predecessors. During his tenure, Calvary has continued her ongoing mission. Rev Davis and the Calvary congregation constructed Calvary Towers, a low income senior citizen housing complex adjacent to the church on July 30, 1989. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church continues to serve the spiritual and secular needs of many of Salt Lake City’s community. While predominantly African-American in membership, fellowship is offered to anyone who seeks membership.