Historical Background 

The mosque of the American Moslem Society was established in 1937. It is the oldest mosque in the State of Michigan, and also considered one of the oldest mosques in North America. Since the mosque plays a vital role in the lives of Muslims, many Muslims immigrants established residence near and around the mosque area. As the community’s population continued to grow, so did the mosque. The mosque has evolved from a small house to a building that occupies 48,000 square feet.

AMS Mosque between 1937 and 1952

Due to the community’s growth in the vicinity of the mosque during the period from 1937 to 1952, once again the need to expand the mosque arose in order to accommodate the mosque’s increasing number of attendees especially during Friday and holiday prayers. In 1952, the AMS along with community members decided to launch the second expansion which doubled the size of the mosque. In that expansion, the green dome of the mosque was placed on its roof. In addition, the two small minarets were added. The size of the mosque increased from few thousand to twelve thousands square feet.

AMS Mosque between 1952 and 1986

Due to the central and important role the mosque plays in the Muslims’ daily lives, the mosque became a community center for people to perform their religious duties and also to  socialize.  The number of mosque attendees increased rapidly during the sixties, seventies and early eighties.  During this period, there was a court ruling to allow the calling for prayers to be transmitted through outside speakers.  It was the first mosque in the United States to be allowed to transmit call prayers through loudspeakers. After the previous expansions, in 1986, the community again decided to expand the mosque.  The size of the building doubled from 12,000 to 24,000 square feet.  In 1982, the weekend school was added to the mosque to start providing classes for the growing number of first generation Muslims in the community.

AMS Mosque between 1986 and 2000

Mosque attendants expectedly continued to grow in spite of opening many local mosques in Dearborn and Detroit.  The number of students in the weekend school almost doubled.  By the beginning of the 90’s, the building could no longer accommodate the numbers of attendants to the extent that people had to pray in the basement, offices, and even outdoor. Holiday events used to be conducted in the parking lot due to the number of attendants exceeding building capacity.  There was a desire to expand the weekend school, add a library, and an activities room to hold the community events. In 2000, another expansion took place.  This expansion took the building from being 24000  to 48000 square feet. The weekend school was also expanded and many facilities were added to the building.  The cost for the expansion was $1,800,000.  The whole facility, including the parking lot, occupies more than 100,000 square feet.