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Wooster Digital History Project

Preserving the Vine Street Church

The original Second Baptist Church, constructed in 1894, changed hands frequently in the decades since the congregation moved. In the 1970s, the building was divided into apartments, and in 2009, a Wooster couple bought the land with the intention of razing the building and constructing a facility for Wooster Glass Co. A number of Wooster community members, however, were not content to see this historic building destroyed. Lydia Thompson, a leader in Wooster’s African American Community and Second Baptist’s resident historian, spearheaded a committee dedicated to preserving the church. As of 2013, the building has been dismantled and placed in storage. The preservation committee has high hopes for the building’s future. Thompson wants to see the church reconstructed as a daycare facility and black cultural center, preserving the church’s original role as a pillar of African American culture in Wooster.1

1 Paul Locher, “Second Baptist Church Dismantled and Put in Storage, For Now,” The Daily Record, April 3, 2012.