$3M fundraiser launched to restore Salem Chapel BME Church to original grandeur

salem chapel

A California company wants to restore the St. Catharines church, where Harriet Tubman once worshipped, to its original state.

Spectra hopes to raise $3M to start work next year on the Salem Chapel BME church on Geneva Street.

Salem Chapel trustee and historian Rochelle Bush tells CKTB part of the restoration work includes having the original plank wood floors exposed, and original pews put back.

In the 50's, the original pews were replaced. 

The owner of Spectra, Ray Adamyk, grew up in St. Catharines and is the motivation behind the project.

"Our goal is to restore Salem Chapel to its original grandeur, so that when a visitor comes in, they’ll find themselves standing in a place that Harriet Tubman herself determined to be a suitable haven for worship and shelter for her friends and family."

He says if they don't preserve Salem Chapel, we will lose the physical monument to Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad in Canada.