Reverend James Marcellus Stone was the founder of the Stone Temple Missionary Baptist Church which was a center of the civil rights movement in Chicago in the 1960s. Under Rev. Stone’s leadership, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. preached and held rallies at his church. Rev. Stone was born in Georgia, and he knew Martin Luther King, Sr. (the father of Martin Luther King, Jr.} who was a preacher in Atlanta. The church became the “action center” of King’s Chicago Freedom Movement in 1966. When King moved his family to Chicago to support the civil rights movement in the north, Rev. Stone found an apartment for King’s family near the Church. Rev. Stone joined King’s march in Selma.
The Stone Temple Baptist Church building was designated a Chicago Landmark in 2016.