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The original item was published from 5/18/2023 2:45:53 PM to 5/23/2023 12:00:00 AM.

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Posted on: May 18, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Historic Marker Dedication Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church Sunday, May 21, 11 a.m.

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MEDIA CONTACT: Misti Guertin, Communications and Digital Media Manager
(772) 600-1250,

Historic Marker Dedication Mt. Calvary Missionary Baptist Church Sunday, May 21, 11 a.m.

STUART, FL (May 18, 2023) – In celebration of Historic Preservation Month, the City of Stuart Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) will host a historic marker dedication for Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church this Sunday, May 21, 2023, 11 a.m.

Located at 904 S.E. Bayou Avenue, Stuart, Mount Calvary Missionary Baptist Church was established circa 1916 by Ms. Lula Simpo, an East Stuart resident who led weekly bible studies in a small wood frame house on the site.

Official organization of the congregation took place in 1916, and Reverend Green served as the first pastor, followed by Reverends McCord and Calloway respectively

In 1925, Reverend J.H. Grant partnered with the Colored Civic League of Stuart to facilitate “Community Building” lectures. In the 1930s, the congregation grew as a cultural center by hosting plays and concerts for black and white Stuart residents.

In 1933, one of several hurricanes destroyed the church, along with much of Martin County. The following year, Rev. J.H. Dolphus assumed leadership and the remnants of the original structure were cleared by parishioners. The congregation resumed hosting programs and entertainment to raise funds for the rebuilding of the church.

Mt. Calvary became known for its outstanding revivals, choir, spiritual, and community programming.

During the 1960s, the church served as annex classrooms for Stuart Training School. In 1976, Mount Calvary became home to the Gertrude Walden Child Care Center for several years.

In 1992, Rev. Charles Gadson began acquiring additional property for a learning center and dining hall. And in 2006, Minister Elker L. Harris was chosen to lead the congregation and continue the growth of Mount Calvary as a spiritual and community fixture.

Since its beginning, Mount Calvary has been a central piece of Stuart history.

For more information on the dedication or the CRA, contact Jordan Pinkston, CRA Program Manager, City of Stuart, (772) 288-5375 or

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