A historic 19th-century Queens church that once served as a stop on the Underground Railroad could be facing the wrecking ball as leaders in the Flushing congregation consider a proposal to replace the aging structure with a new sanctuary.
The African Methodist Episcopal Church on Union Street dates back to the 1800s and today remains one of the borough’s two surviving stops on the Underground Railroad, a network of people and buildings used to shuttle slaves out of the South before the Civil War.
Flushing’s John Bowne House is the borough’s other surviving remnant of the network that brought an estimated 100,000 slaves to freedom in northern states and Canada.
But church officials, concerned about structural problems in the building, are considering building a new church on the site.
Revered McEachern confirmed that they are in the “developing stage” of tearing down the church so that a new worship site could be built. He said that the various historic elements of the building, like the church’s vaulted roof, would be preserved and used in the new building. But he declined to comment on the decision, which was made by the church’s board of trustees.