Historic Beaufort church gets $250,000 preservation grant

Published: Oct. 25, 2021 at 6:30 AM EDT
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BEAUFORT, S.C. (WCSC/AP) - A 158-year-old Beaufort church has been given a $250,000 grant through a national program aimed at preserving historic houses of worship.

Tabernacle Baptist Church was among 15 churches that secured grants through the National Fund for Sacred Places. It was the only South Carolina house of worship to receive a grant this year, according to the organization’s website.

Tabernacle Baptist was officially organized in 1863 as the first Baptist church for African Americans in Beaufort, but the building actually dates to 1811.

The Rev. Kenneth Hodges said the money will be used to pay for building repairs at the church. The church is in the separate process of raising $500,000 for a Harriet Tubman sculpture.

The organization says in addition to the grant funds, the 14 to 16 churches that are selected each year will receive training, planning grants and pro-bono consulting services to make sure projects are well-planned and capital campaigns are successful.

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