The First Baptist Church of Rome was organized in 1817 and the cornerstone of the present building was laid on September 13, 1872. A remodeling of the sanctuary and an educational addition were dedicated in February 1925. There is a convenient elevator accessed through the Embargo Street door that stops at all levels of the building.
First Baptist is an active member of the American Baptist Churches of the USA and is part of the region known as the American Baptist Churches of New York State. We participate in the various ministries of the Mohawk-Oneida Association of American Baptists. We also cooperate locally with the Rome Clergy Association, an ecumenical body that sponsors several services throughout the year.
Although many men and women have ministered through our church over the years, perhaps the best known is Francis Bellamy. The author of the Pledge of Allegiance grew up in Rome and in the First Baptist Church, where his father was pastor until his untimely death in 1864. Francis became a minister as well, and wrote the Pledge in 1892.
Among the strengths of our congregation are a music program that includes a Chancel choir, Cherub choir and handbell choirs. We are an ethnically diverse congregation and draw members from throughout Rome and its surrounding environs. Several of our members work at the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Defense Financial Accounting Service.