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William Hooper Councill: St John A.M.E. Church


St. John in Huntsville was organized by Dr. William Hooper Councill and others in 1885. The first church services were held in a barber shop on the corner of Miller and West Holmes Streets. In addition to organizing St. John, Dr. Councill also served as the first Pastor.

In 1900 the first church building was built on Church Street. In 1971 the church moved into a newly erected facility at 229 Church Street. From the strategic location at the corner of downtown Huntsville, St. John opened its doors to the community. The church purchased 53 acres of land in northwest Huntsville in 2008 and an expansion committee is continuing with the plans for future use of the property.

The many civic and cultural events hosted by St. John include NAACP meetings and programs, inaugural prayer service for the President of the City Council of Huntsville, graduation for the Phoenix program, voter registration, and the originating point for the NAACP Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. March.

St. John continues to have a strong affiliation with Alabama A&M University through its members, outreach to students and financial support. Transportation is available for students who desire to attend worship.