George Lisle Photo

George Lisle

Death: Jan 1, 1820

Nationality: United States

George Lisle

Date of Death : Jan 1, 1820

George Liele Liele, or Leile, or George Sharp was an African American and emancipated slave who became the founding pastor of the First African Baptist Church, in Savannah, Georgia. He became the first American missionary, leaving in 1782 for Jamaica; this is thirty years before Adoniram Judson left for Burma. He became the first Baptist missionary in Jamaica. Liele was born into slavery in Virginia in 1752, but was taken to Georgia. As an adult he was converted by Rev. Matthew Moore of Burke County, Georgia, around 1774, and continued to worship in this white church for four years until Savannah was evacuated by forces loyal to Britain. His master Henry Sharp was a deacon in Rev. Moore's church and encouraged him in his preaching to other slaves. Liele was freed by his master Henry Sharp, also a Baptist and Loyalist, before the American Revolution began. Sharp died in 1778. Liele went to Savannah, Georgia, where he helped organize an early Baptist congregation.

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