Pleasant Grove African Methodist Episcopal Church
Organized June 29, 1869
“Why in one year alone, I traveled over fifteen thousand miles in this state, organizing and planting churches…And I would guess…that I have received during and since the war about sixteen or seventeen thousand full members into the A.M.E. Church….”
Reverend Henry McNeal Turner, Presiding Elder of Georgia
Organized June 29, 1869, at Taylors Creek, GA, the origins of Pleasant Grove date to after the Civil War, when the Reverend Henry McNeal Turner helped to establish hundreds of AME churches in Georgia for newly freed African Americans. The first Trustees were Samuel Frasier, Reverend Piner Martin, Samuel Martin, Syrus Smiley, and Solomon Smith.
The Reverend Piner Martin (1807-1904), a local community leader served as the first pastor. For African Americans living in the Taylors Creek area from 1869-1941, the Pleasant Grove AME Church was a religious, educational and social center.
On October 3, 1941, the United States government purchased the church property and dwellings for $1600 as part of its efforts to establish Camp Stewart (now Ft. Stewart, GA). In 1942-43 the church was reestablished at its current location, on Georgia 38 (now Highway 84) near Allenhurst, Georgia.
In 2003 a historical marker was erected by the Liberty County Historical Society to honor the legacy and historical relevance of the church and it’s Annual Camp Meeting Celebration that serves as the annual gathering place of the African American residents and descendants of Taylors Creek and other former disbanded African American communities and churches. Thus, the adopted theme “the tie that binds.”