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Preserve the Heritage...Embrace the Experience!
Preserve the Heritage...
Embrace the Experience!

About Us  /  Our Organization

St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation

In the 1970’s when the St. Joseph’s AME Church congregation moved to a new church home, the original structure became the catalyst for the formation of the St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation (SJHF). The Foundation was incorporated in 1975 with the intention of preserving the embellished old sanctuary and adapting it for cultural and civic events. SJHF’s mission is preserving and advancing the heritage and culture of historic Hayti and the African American experience through programs that benefit the broader community locally, nationally and globally. The church complex, renamed the Hayti Heritage Center, is listed on the register of national historic landmarks. Descendants of the original residents of the district once known as “Black Wall Street” continue to visit the Center along with other residents and visitors from surrounding areas.

Accomplishing Our Goals

The Foundation’s goals are to consistently present the very best in quality cultural arts programs related to the African American experience, promote cross-cultural understanding between isolated communities, and foster intercultural support. We accomplish our mission by providing enlightening and enriching programs in cultural arts and education. The St. Joseph’s Historic Foundation/Hayti Heritage Center continues to be an agent of social change with a long-term commitment to utilizing the arts as a tool to bring communities together and establishing common ground among diverse cultures. The Foundation is committed to providing the local community and patrons-at-large with core programs and other events throughout the year.

Our Anchor Programs

Programming has always been the core asset of the Foundation’s services. There are a number of anchor programs that solidify the Foundations uniqueness as an arts presenter across the Triangle, state and country. These anchor programs intermix local, regional and national artists thus providing a rich mix of quality cultural arts programs for all ages and socioeconomic demographics.

Our Anchor Programs are:

  • Lyda Moore Merrick Gallery Exhibitions
  • West African Dance
  • Black American Music Series
  • Concert Series
  • Kwanzaa Celebration
  • Jambalaya Soul Spoken Word/Poetry Slam Team
  • Tours Year Round
  • Hayti Heritage Film Festival
  • Hayti Lit Book Club
  • Youth Arts Enrichment Program

A New Life for an Old Church: Historic Preservation at Hayti Heritage Center

For more information about giving opportunities contact the Development Office at 919.683.1709.

Join the growing Hayti family of contributors whose donations support the preservation and restoration of the St. Joseph’s AME Church.



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