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Historic Louisville landmark Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. once spoke in receives $100,000 grant

Quinn Chapel and 32 other places across the country were awarded funds to preserve and protect historic African American sites.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Several historically Black organizations and sites, including one in Louisville, were awarded in total $3 million in grants from the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund on Tuesday.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, an AACHAF program, focuses on investing in places and organizations that demonstrate the beauty and complexity of African American life, and includes historic sites tied to Black arts, culture and more, according to a press release.

In 1910, the congregation of Quinn Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church purchased the building which stands on the corner of Chestnut Street and 9th Street.

The congregation worshipped here for nearly 100 years, until 2002 when they moved to a newly-built church in the Russell neighborhood. YMCA of Greater Louisville purchased the church in 2002. 

Credit: Elijah McKenzie

Quinn Chapel has a rich Civil Rights history. In April 1961, Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. visited Louisville to voice his support for the desegregation movement, according to Louisville Metro Government.

Construction for Quinn Chapel started in 1857 and renovations to restore the property started in 2014 when the roof collapsed.

This grant money will help to restore electricity in the building as well as renovate the interior and exterior.

Including the $100,000, the chapel has received up to $2.4 million in grant and restoration money in an effort to open Quinn Chapel as a community space again.


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