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Nine facts you didn't know about Victoria's oldest black congregations

By Jennifer Lee Preyss
Feb. 25, 2011 at midnight
Updated Feb. 24, 2011 at 8:25 p.m.

Pastor Zettie Woodson speaks to a member of his congregation at Webster Chapel United Methodist Church on Sunday after the morning service.  Originating in 1871, Webster Chapel is one of the oldest congregations in Victoria. Woodson has been pastor there since June.

Palestine Baptist Church is among a short list of historic black churches in Victoria that continues to thrive into the 21st century. In June, the congregation will celebrate its 143rd anniversary, designating Palestine's members as the oldest, continuously worshiping black church in the county.

The Texas Historical Commission erected a historical marker in front of Palestine Baptist Church on Convent Street in 1991.

Other markers recognizing longtime black church congregations were erected in front of Webster Chapel United Methodist Church on South Wheeler Street, and Mt. Salem American Baptist Church on North Street. Here are nine facts you didn't know about Victoria's oldest black congregations.

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