Greater St. James AME Church
This congregation was founded in 1883 and initially met in a member’s house on Main St. In 1885 they built a frame sanctuary at the corner of Lake and N. Church Streets, renovating it in 1917 and again in 1948-1950. In 1951 Rev. J. A. DeLaine (1898-1974) was transferred here for his safety after playing a leading role in Briggs v. Elliott, the Clarendon County school desegregation case that led to Brown v. Board of Education (1954) but unknown arsonists—presumably local whites—burned down the church in October, 1955. A new sanctuary was dedicated at this site in 1957.
KEYWORDS: BRIGGS V. ELLIOTT, DESEGREGATION, LAKE CITY, FLORENCE COUNTY