Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

New Jersey Historic Trust Affiliated with the Department of Community Affairs

Belleville Avenue Congregational Church (Clinton Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church)

New Jersey Historic Preservation Trust Fund
Historic Site Management Grant
Grant Award: $136,188 (1995); $41,074 (2012)
Grant Recipient: Clinton Memorial AME Zion Church
County: Essex
Municipality: Newark City

The Belleville Avenue Congregational Church was designed by noted architect William Appleton Potter. The church was completed in 1874-1884 and is one of the best examples of High Victorian Gothic architecture in Newark. The church exemplifies the style through the use of polychromy, rock-faced brownstone walls, light colored stone trim, ornamental details, and chamfered window openings.

The Belleville Congregational Church continued to use the building until ca. 1927 when they sold the building to the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church. The Clinton Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church purchased the building in 1929. Clinton Memorial A.M.E. Zion Church is significant as the oldest African American congregation in New Jersey, having been founded in 1822.

The 2012 grant helped fund a conditions assessment, made recommendations for future prioritized repairs and provided preservation guidelines for volunteer activities. A previous Trust grant helped fund replacement of the deteriorated roofing and drainage systems.

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