An East-of-the-River View
—Anacostia Heritage Trail —
Settled by the formerly enslaved. Some Barry Farm-era churches still serve the neighborhood.
Macedonia Baptist Church, about a block to your left at 2625 Stanton Road, was organized in 1866 by Rev. James William Howard. Ten years later a group led by Rev. Henry Scott left Macedonia to form Bethlehem Baptist Church (across Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue).
Some early Barry Farm residents trekked the mile to the African Methodist Episcopal Allen Chapel, which since 1850 served the free black families of Good Hope village. Soon they formed what became Campbell AME Church, up the hill from this spot. During the 1950s, Campbell AME hosted groups working to desegregate schools in the District. Young church members Barbara and Adrienne Jennings were plaintiffs in Bolling v. Sharpe, one of the court cases folded into Brown v. Board of Education. In 1954 the Supreme Court decided Brown v. Board and outlawed school segregation nationwide.
African American Episcopalians attended the Chapel of St. Philip the Evangelist, founded in 1887 as a mission of the nearby white Emmanuel Episcopal Church. St. Philip's 1937 building on Shannon Place was a gift from undertaker Minnie B. Smoot. Former City Council Chair Arrington Dixon recalled how St. Philip's Father Charles Walden gave him his first political awareness: "Father
Walden would take us to the regional Episcopal Diocese youth meetings. They had discussion groups on all kinds of thoughtful things that kids should know."
Civic leader, lecturer, and poet Solomon Brown of Elvans Road founded Pioneer Sabbath School, where adults heard uplifting talks by such eminent speakers of the late 18005 as Frederick Douglass, Representative John Mercer Langston, and other members of Congress. Brown's school met weekly in Douglass Hall on the corner of Howard Road behind you.
The United House of Prayer for All People, on Douglass Hall's former site, arrived in Anacostia in 1942, and on this spot in 1969.