In the last quarter of the eighteenth century, two black preachers, first Moses, then Gowan Pamphlet, began holding religious services out of doors for free blacks and slaves in the Williamsburg area. Although identified as an organized Baptist church by 1781, the earliest in Williamsburg, reluctance to recognize an all black congregation postponed its official acceptance by the regional Baptist association until 1793. By 1818, and perhaps earlier, the "African Church", as it was called, met here in a wooden building on land given to the church by Jesse Cole. The structure was replaced shortly before the Civil War by a brick church, in use until 1955. By then known as "The First Baptist Church", the congregation moved into new facilities on Scotland Street where it continues today.