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Volume 3  AAMHC Journal                                                                                       AAMHC
   2016   A Journal of the African American Methodist Heritage Center                                        at a Glance

               A National Museum                                                                                      The African American
               Close to Home for Methodists                                                                   Methodist Heritage Center is

The recent dedication of the National Museum of African American History and Culture on the National                a ministry related to the
                                                                                                               United Methodist Church. It
Mall in Washington, DC reminds United Methodists of their creative and crucial role in the history of
                                                                                                                   views the church and its
people of color.                                                                                                  ministry in retrospect and
   Both Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglas received their beginnings from Methodist societies on the       prospect. It envisions its work
                                                                                                              as gatherer and conserver of
Eastern shore of Maryland and proceeded on to be the key abolitionists and leaders of the Underground         the vital history and heritage
Railroad. Some of the first slave insurrectionists were black preachers. The father of the transition from
Spirituals to Gospel music was the Rev. Charles Albert Tindley, a former slave and the founder of Tindley             of Black people in the
Temple United Methodist Church, and the composer of over 100 hymns like Beams of Heaven as I                  successive Methodist bodies
Go, Nothing Between, We'll Understand It Better By and By. Athletes like Sugar Ray Robinson and Jackie
Robinson honed their skills at black United Methodists churches in New York and Los Angeles.                    of the Methodist Episcopal
                                                                                                                   Church, to being racially
   Honored at the new museum were several individuals who were United Methodists, including Esau and              segregated in the Central
Janie Jenkins, who drove residents of John’s Island, South Carolina to Charleston, for schools and jobs.          Jurisdiction to the United
During these journeys they taught adults to read and advocated voter registration. The rear door of their          Methodist Church in the
Citizens Committee van with filled with inspirational quotes and is now on display at the new museum
(see above). Elaine Jenkins, the daughter of Esau and Janie Jenkins, and formerly a member of the Board       American and global society.
of Trustees of the African American Methodist Heritage Center (AAMHC), traveled with many family                 The AAMHC ministry is to
members and friends to the grand opening.                                                                        help ensure that accurate

   A photograph taken by Adelle Banks, a member of Asbury United Methodist Church in Washington, DC,         representation of that story is
and a reporter for Religion News Service, is on display in the museum’s “A Century in the Making”                preserved and examined.
exhibition. The photo depicts the deputy director of the museum receiving a family’s donation of broken                Board of Trustees:
stained glass from the 16th Street Baptist Church, which was bombed in Birmingham, Ala., in 1963. The            Rev. David W. Brown, Dr.
family made the presentation in 2013, 50 years after the bombing. Banks is also the primary videographer
for the oral history project of the AAMHC.                                                                    Angella Current Felder, Rev.
                                                                                                                 Fred Day, Rev. Dr. James
   The first black colleges organized for Blacks following the civil war were by Methodists from the north,
beginning with Rust College, and now with 11 such institutions. Similarly, institutions like Gulfside          Ferree, Rev. Dr. Hilly Hicks,
Assembly in Mississippi were the foundation piece of black Methodists and others. Dr. Martin Luther King        Dr. Cynthia Bond Hopson ,
Jr's two key allies were Rev. Joseph Lowery, who become the president of the Southern Christian
Leadership Conference and the Rev. James Lawson, the architect and primary teacher of the early sit-ins.             Ms. Ruth Lawson, Ms.
And, of course, the empowerers in all those struggles were benevolent white Methodists who believed,             Cecelia Long, Mr. Donald
sacrificed and often risked their own lives, including the Woman's Home Missionary society who
sponsored 25 institutions for children and youth following The Civil War. The AAMHC celebrates the new                Lusk, Rev. Dr. Walter
museum because it is our museum too.                                                                          McKelvey, Dr. Arnold Parks,
                                                                                                              Dr. James M. Shopshire, Sr.,
Bishop Forrest C. Stith, Elaine Jenkins and Adelle Banks all contributed to the content of this article.     Ms. Mollie M. Stewart, Bishop

                                                                                                                 Forrest C. Stith, President
                                                                                                               Emeritus, Dr. Barbara Ricks

                                                                                                                     Thompson, Dr. Cheryl
                                                                                                                Walker, Ms. Anne Fleming
                                                                                                               Williams, Member Emeritus,
                                                                                                             Dr. John Wright, and Carol L.
                                                                                                               Travis, Executive Assistant.

                                                                                                                    The AAMHC Journal is
                                                                                                                 published several times a
                                                                                                              year by the African American
                                                                                                                Methodist Heritage Center;
                                                                                                             AAMHC, 36 Madison Avenue,
                                                                                                               P. O. Box 127; Madison, NJ

                                                                                                                            (973) 408-3862.
                                                                                                                       Advance #3020514.
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