National Baptist Memorial Church

Dedicated in 1933, the National Baptist Memorial Church is a memorial to Roger Williams, a pioneer for religious liberty.

The congregation of this local church was organized in 1906, yet the vision for the religious building expanded through a desire for a national Baptist Church. Original designs included a prominent statue of Roger Williams, Puritan minister, theologian, and pioneer of religious liberty.

Northern and Southern Baptist groups decided to unite in the building of the current structure, with a public groundbreaking in April of 1921. The church features a white limestone edifice and a massive, round corner tower, whose classic silhouette is derivative of late seventeenth-century English examples. The interior of the tower forms a circular channel in one side of the hexagonal auditorium, while the remaining portion of the structure contains the usual offices of the church. The main entrance is set in the facade fronting Sixteenth Street, and is crowned by a classic balustrade behind which the low dome of the auditorium is visible.

The church continues to operate in a local and national capacity today as an icon of Baptist religion. 

DC Inventory: November 8, 1964 (Joint Committee on Landmarks)  
Within the Meridian Hill Historic District 



16th Street & Columbia Road, NW