Rev J Polite Playground

Rev James Polite Av to Interval Av bet. E 167 St and Home St


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This text is part of Parks’ Historical Signs Project and can be found posted within the park.

This playground and the avenue that forms its western boundary are both named for Reverend James Arthur Polite (1899-1980), a much-loved pastor of the nearby Thessalonia Baptist Church.  Born in Beauport, South Carolina, Polite became pastor of the Bronx church in 1939.  He not only ministered to his own flock, but also saw to the welfare of residents throughout the Bronx.  He was an active member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).  Because of Polite’s interest in the missionary movement, the government of the former British Guiana invited him to attend their independence ceremony in 1966.  He was president of the Baptist Ministers Conference and the Progressive Baptist Conference.  His fund-raising efforts enabled the Thessalonia Baptist Church to move from 921 Eagle Avenue to its present location, at 941 Reverend James A. Polite Avenue.  The street was named for Polite in 1981, and the playground, for…

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Directions to Rev J Polite Playground

  • Rev J Polite Playground

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