Charles Street Meeting House
Designed by architect Asher Benjamin, the Charles Street Meeting House was built in 1807 to house the Third Baptist Church of Boston. The segregationist tradition of New England church seating patterns prevailed here, but were challenged in the 1830’s by church member Timothy Gilbert, paving the way for future speeches made here by prominent abolitionists such as Sojourner Truth, Wendell Phillips, Frederick Douglass, and Charles Sumner. The African Methodist Episcopal Church purchased the building in 1876, but by 1900 economic, social, and political forces made its continued existence on Charles Street difficult and the church moved to Roxbury in 1939. Today, the building houses four floors of offices, with retail on the ground floor. The exterior has been completely preserved.