Historical Marker To Be Placed at Site of Knoxville, Tennessee’s First Black Church


A historical marker will be placed on the site of the former Warner Tabernacle African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church on Tuesday. 

The marker, located at 1021 Fuller Avenue, will highlight the history of the Warner Tabernacle being the first African-American church in Knoxville, founded in 1845. It’s also the location of the first African-American school in east Knoxville and a reported site of the Underground Railroad.

A ceremony to unveil the historical marker will beheld at 3 p.m. at the church.

The Tennessee Historical Commission authorized the placement of the historical marker at the site in recognition of and making the public aware of the significant events surrounding the site.

This is part of a larger event called the “Freedom Garden.” The planning committee is made up of representatives from black churches the Beck Cultural Exchange Center, the Knoxville Botanical Garden and Arboretum, as well as faculty from the University of Tennessee’s Departments of History, Geography, and College of Architecture.

The initial phase of this project, funded with the aid of a grant from the Tennessee Civil War Heritage Partnership Project, is called “Building Knoxville Anew: African American Churches and Reconstruction Legacies” is both a research project and a public planning project.

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Source: WATE

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