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Welcome   History – The Sixties  
About Prescott

During the 1950s, demographic changes caused a gradual membership decline, as white Memphians moved to the suburbs. However, the most dramatic changes, those which shaped the character and mission of today's congregation, began in the 1960s. At that time African-American students from the University began visiting Prescott's worship services. In 1968, after a divisive debate, the congregation voted to accept a Black student’s request for membership, thus becoming the first SBC church in the Mid-South to become racially integrated. That spring in Memphis, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated while supporting striking sanitation workers. Only two white Baptist ministers joined the local ministers' march on behalf of the sanitation workers: Prescott's pastor at the time, Bob Troutman (1962-1972), and Dr. Brooks Ramsey, who later served as Prescott's interim pastor and a long-time member.

Reverend Troutman and several laypersons in the congregation provided leadership during this period. While hundreds of members left directly or indirectly as a result of racial issues, the 200 or so who remained felt strongly about the need to apply the Gospel's imperatives to issues facing Memphians and Americans at the time – war and peace, racism, sexism, social justice. Succeeding pastors have continued these traditions.

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In 1968, after a divisive debate,
the congregation voted to accept
the request of a black student for
membership, thereby becoming
the first SBC church in the
Mid-South to become racially integrated.

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Prescott Memorial Baptist Church
961 Getwell Road
Memphis TN 38111

Telephone 901.327.8479
FAX 901.324.7802
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