Cultural Heritage Tours

A project of the ETHNIC HERITAGE CENTER

Lower Dixwell Tour

St. Luke's Episcopal Church

111 Whalley Avenue

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church. Courtesy Joe Taylor.

St. Luke’s was founded on June 7, 1844 at a meeting of the “colored members” of the parish of Trinity Episcopal Church, New Haven, after the Trinity vestry voted to segregate Black congregants in the back of the gallery. One of the founding members was Alexander DuBois, grandfather of W.E.B. DuBois the great African American scholar and civil rights leader. Saint Luke’s was one of the first churches in the country, and the third oldest Episcopal Church, with a predominantly African American congregation. The Church came to play a crucial role in the assimilation of immigrants, especially from the Caribbean countries, into the local society.

The St. Luke’s congregation acquired its first permanent church home in April, 1852 when the congregation purchased a property on Park Street between Crown and George Streets (later the home of St. Michael’s Ukrainian Catholic Church). In 1905 St. Luke’s moved to its present location. Through worship services, prayer, support groups and an ongoing meals program for the hungry and homeless, the Church offers material and spiritual support to those who find themselves in need in the downtown New Haven area.


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