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Salem Baptist Church

Page 1. Digitized Historical Texts

Salem Baptist Church - Sanborn Map

General Works

The the links that follow will take you to digitized histories of Salem Baptist Church written by church members to celebrate the anniversary of the church in 1993, 1976 and 1958. It also links to an issue of "Through The Years" feating a narrative of the church's history and images from long-time church member Veola Tinsley.

History of Salem Baptist. Written in 1993 to celebrate the church's anniversary, this history includes a survey of all important dates, celebrations and groups in the church's history, as well as the names of all former Salem pastors and most deacons.


110 Years by GraceCommemorative history and scrapbook produced in 1976, this book features photographs of all the then active church groups.


50 Years of JubileeWritten to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the church's current building, this history/scrapbook includes reproductions of many newspaper clippings and programs about the church from the first half of the Twentieth century.


Reverend William H. Donaldson Oral HistoryConducted by staff from the Urbana Free Library in the early 1980's, this oral history contains Salem's Pastor Emeritus's reflections on the church's role and history in the African-American community.


Through the YearsThis special issue of Through the Years includes a history and photo scrapbook compiled by Veola Tinsley, featuring photographs of the church and church-life in the late 1940's and early 1950's.


Salem Baptist Church

Salem Speaks!

Beginning in January 1983, Salem Baptist Church began publishing "Salem Speaks!" a quarterly newsletter about the church and its activities. The Urbana Free Library Archives has eight issues of this newsletter in its holdings that have been digitized as part of the eBlackCU project. We encourage individuals with other issues to please e-mail Noah Lenstra at so that we can get them online and available.

Winter 1984

Summer 1984

Winter 1985

Winter 1986

August-September 1986

December 1986


May 1988

Reverand William Howe Donaldson

Salem Baptist Church in other histories

In this section are included books, articles and newspapers that mention Salem Baptist Church and its history, but that do not have the Church at the center of the texts.

Salem Baptist Church Clippings fileA compilation of newspaper and other clippings related to Salem Baptist Church compiled by staff members at the Urbana Free Library Archives.

Through the Years - Spring 1996Features an article looking at the history of cornerstones of African-American churches.

Minority Collective Action Against Local Discrimination: A Study of the Negro Community in Champaign-UrbanaA Master's thesis written in the early 1990's that describes, among other things, the importance of Salem Baptist Church in coordinating the protesting of J.C. Penney's discriminatory hiring practices.

Haruko Kinase-Leggett. "About Time (Some Patterns of Time Reckoning...) (Ph.D., Anthropology, 2000). Features a chapter on Salem Baptist Church.

Genny Maher. "The Social Role of the Black Church in Champaign-Urbana: Salem Baptist and Bethel A.M.E. Churches" Unpublished course paper for Urban Planning, 199, December 16, 1988.

Kenneth Kinnamon A Richard Wright Bibliography: Fifty Years of Criticism and Commentary, 1933, p. 4. Brief mention of Wright's speech to Salem Baptist Church in 1936.