On March 17, 1955, The Reverend Frank Hitson organized New Salem Baptist Church along with seven members in the home of Amelia Rogers of New Orleans, Louisiana. He served the congregation as pastor for 20 years and during his administration, the church worshipped in a building located at a site on Old Gentilly Road. In 1965, Hurricane Betsy destroyed the building and property was purchased at 1632 Alvar Street, New Orleans, Louisiana. Rev. Hitson provided spiritual leadership and served the congregation until his death in 1975.
In 1976, following the death of the former pastor, the church asked The Reverend Warren Jones, Jr. to serve the congregation until a new pastor could be elected. On February 1, 1977, he began his administration as the pastor of New Salem Baptist Church. Rev. Jones, a dynamic and expository preacher led the church in tremendous growth and opportunities for ministry and outreach. Realizing such incredible growth, vision, and foresight, church needed to purchase a new facility.
The numerical growth of the members demanded a new church building; as a result, on March 25, 2001 a new edifice was dedicated to God at 1530 Alvar Street, New Orleans, Louisiana. A number of auxiliaries became operational and new ministries were developed. Some of the new ministries included Hospital and Prison Outreach, Community Resource Center, Grief Counseling, Mental Health, Senior Adult Housing, Boy Scouts, and Domestic Abuse. Many souls have been won to Jesus Christ through these ministries, as well as, meeting the needs of the community. The church has received numerous awards for its work in evangelism and mission.
Pastor Jones led the congregation in writing a new vision and mission statement. In 1980, an After-School Tutorial and Summer Enrichment Program serving disadvantaged children and youth throughout the city was developed and hot meals were served daily. In 2015, the Youth Center of Hope ministry was designed to evangelize, equip, and empower at-risk young people and a building was dedicated for this program. This center provides community-wide benefits and workshops for youth and their families. Also, scholarships are awarded to high school graduates.