The History of the Negro Church- Chapter 1 The Early Missionaries and the Negro

Oh my. I forgot I wrote this last year. Since I have no interest reinventing wheels, here’s chapter 1.

Carter G. Woodson, a Shaw resident, living and working on the 1500 block of 9th St NW, created Negro History Week. This later became Black History Month. Last year I reviewed Carter G. Woodson’s Mis-Education of the Negro. I thought I would review his other book The History of the Negro Church this year.

I’ve read the first chapter. I want to find who edited this thing and do bad things to their grave. If Dr. Woodson edited it, then, this is evidence that authors should get someone else to edit their work.
I’m going to start with something from the book’s preface:

Whether or not the author has done this task well is a question which the public must decide. This work does not represent what he desired to make it. Many facts of the past could not be obtained for the reason that several denominations have failed to keep records and facts known to persons now active in the church could not be collected because of indifference or the failure to understand the motives of the author. Not a few church officers and ministers, however, gladly cooperated with the author in giving and seeking information concerning their denominations.

Given the current lack of popularity, compared to Mis-Education, I will say he had not done his work well. It is a hard read.

My summation of chapter one is that Blacks were a second thought to European missionaries. When they did get around to bringing Christianity to those of African descent into the New World there was a resistance because of an unwritten law (no citations) that once slaves became Christian, they would need to be freed. Catholics didn’t try hard enough and Protestants were more successful at evangelization to Blacks in America.

The one thing I learned reading this chapter was that Quakers taught African American slaves to read in Virginia and North Carolina.

I just wish there were citations for this piece of information and that gets to my first pet peeve. This book is 100 years old and historians of this period have a bad habit of not providing citations to back up anything they wrote. In the copy I have, I do not see end notes, nor is there a bibliography at the end. I blame the time period.

The other pet peeve I’ve revealed early on, was the need for an editor. This was not written for a general audience. It has the charm of a graduate dissertation. He uses $4 words when a $.25 word would do. He’s overly wordy as if he’s getting paid, per word, like a Raymond Chandler novel. The deep need for an editor, someone to strike out some sentences and suggest a better way of making a point, just annoyed the heck out of me.

I just discovered there is an audio book of The History of the Negro Church from December 2020. I will try to listen to this and maybe I’ll do more than 2 chapters this month.

2023 Update- Looking at my notes it appears that he was annoyed that the early Spanish and French missionaries in America were not focused on Blacks. For the Spanish, that’s a no brainer because they exploited the existing population for labor and didn’t need to import Africans, except in some spots. And France had what is now Haiti, and that place ate people up in the machinery of sugar production. People didn’t live long enough.

This chapter covers the late 1600s to about 1764. Geographically it wanders into Latin and South America and the Caribbean.

Obligatory February Carter G. Woodson Post- 2023 The History of the Negro Church

It’s February again, which makes it Black History Month where Shaw’s most famous resident, Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the father of Black History, gets some recognition. In previous years I’ve reviewed his most famous book, the Mis-Education of the Negro. Please go on over to my post from 2022.

Rev_Richard_Allen_dull_ballon
This would even bore poor Bishop Richard Allen

For something a little different for 2023, we’ll look at another book of his, The History of the Negro Church. I did not like this book because it was gawdawful boring. It was informative, but dull. Despite that, it is this month’s book and we’ll look at every stinking chapter. Maybe you too may learn something about the Black church.

This book is Methodist heavy. There are many denominations in American Christianity and a fair number of majority Black churches in more than a handful of those denominations. Woodson does mention the Catholic and Anglican churches but he doesn’t seem to care for them.

I have seen write ups that claim Dr. Woodson was an atheist. His Wikipedia article says he was an “outspoken detractor of the Christian Church.” I don’t really get that from this book. He seems more like an agnostic. He’s not against the Black church, he’s just not impressed with it. In Mis-Education, he spends far more time bad mouthing ‘educated Negroes’ than he does the Christian church. He’s not a believer but he seems okay with those who are, to a point. In this book, he sees the churches as a means to an ends and an organizing body of the community he cares about. He’s very interested in the denominations’ approach to slavery and how/if they addressed it and pushed back against it. And that’s why it is Methodist heavy.

Lastly, the book was originally published in 1921 and was his 3rd book. The more notable Mis-Education of the Negro, was published in 1933, long after establishing Negro History Week (which became a month, decades after his death), other achievements, and developing the skill to write for a more general audience.

Bad Photocopy-Maybe 200 block of Bates Street NW circa 1960-1970s

The image below is a scan of a photocopy of a photograph of a row of Bates Street NW homes. The notation says it is the 100 block of Bates but that set of three 2nd floor bay windows in a row between two bay-less houses looks like 204 to 208 Bates Street NW. But I’m not 100% sure.

204-208 Bates Street NW, Washington DC looking south

If I have the right block, it appears the original stairs were done away with.

WSIC-1950 Sell Off- 222 Q Street NW

The Washington Sanitary Improvement Company (WSIC) was a late 19th century charitable capitalism experiment that ended in the 1950s. This blog started looking at the homes that were supposed to be sold to African American home buyers, after decades of mainly renting to white tenants.

photo of property

Looking at WSIC properties they tend to have a pattern where the properties were sold to a three business partners, Nathaniel J. Taube, Nathan Levin and James B. Evans as the Colonial Investment Co. for $3 million dollars. Those partners sold to African American buyers. There was usually a foreclosure. Then the property wound up in the hands of George Basiliko and or the DC Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA). Then there was the odd lucky ones who managed to avoid that fate.

  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/51) Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 222 Q St NW to Clarence Gayles.
  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/1951) Mr. Gayles borrowed $3,125 from Colonial Investment Co. favorite trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • February 1951 Evans, Levin and Taube sold the other one-half of 222 Q St NW to Mildred and Willie E. Sessoms.
  • February 1951 the Sessoms borrowed $3,275 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • January 1951 (recorded 5/1/1951) Gayles sold his half to Sylvia and Clayton Watson.
  • Unfortunately, June 1958 Gayles (the Watsons) lost their half to foreclosure and via auction, it was returned to Evans, Taube and new partner Harry A. Badt.
  • June 1958 (recorded 11/14/1958) The Badts (Harry & wife) transferred their interest in this and other properties to Nathan Levin’s family (wife Rose, children Lawrence, Myron Levin and Ruth Wagman).
  • June 1959, as part of a larger package, Evans, Taube, Badt (and their wives) and Levin’s survivors sell their interest in 222 Q St NW to Sophia and George Basiliko.
  • March 1962 the Sessoms paid off their mortgage.
  • February and March 1978 Delores Simpkins purchased both halves of 222 Q St NW from widower Willie Sessoms and George Basiliko.

This property, despite part of it falling under George Basiliko’s ownership, did not transfer over to the District of Columbia Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA).

WSIC-1950 Sell Off- 220 Q Street NW

The Washington Sanitary Improvement Company (WSIC) was a late 19th century charitable capitalism experiment that ended in the 1950s. This blog started looking at the homes that were supposed to be sold to African American home buyers, after decades of mainly renting to white tenants.

photo of property

Looking at WSIC properties they tend to have a pattern where the properties were sold to a three business partners, Nathaniel J. Taube, Nathan Levin and James B. Evans as the Colonial Investment Co. for $3 million dollars. Those partners sold to African American buyers. There was usually a foreclosure. Then the property wound up in the hands of George Basiliko and or the DC Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA). Then there was the odd lucky ones who managed to avoid that fate.

Let’s see what happens with 220 Q Street NW:

  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/51) Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 220 Q St NW to Ernestine and John Dawson.
  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/1951) the Dawsons borrowed $3,125 from Colonial Investment Co. favorite trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • January 1951 Evans, Levin and Taube sold  the other half of 220 Q St NW to Mary C. and William Robinson.
  • January 1951 the Robinsons borrowed $3,275 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • September 1953 the Dawsons lost their half of the house to foreclosure, and Evans, Levin, and Taube regained the property via an auction.
  • September 1953 (recorded 10/1/1953) sold half of 220 to Phylitus O Norris.
  • September 1953 (recorded 10/1/1953) Ms. Norris borrowed $3,888.43 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • July 1954 the Robinsons lost their half to foreclosure, and Evans, Levin, and Taube regained the property via an auction.
  • March 1955 Ms. Norris sold her half back to Evans, Levin, and Taube.
  • March 1959 as part of a larger package, Evans, Taube, and Levin’s survivors sell all of 220 Q St NW to Sophia and George Basiliko.
  • July 1970, the Basilikos, as part of a larger property package, sell 220 Q St NW to the District of Columbia Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA).

WSIC-1950 Sell Off- 218 Q Street NW

The Washington Sanitary Improvement Company (WSIC) was a late 19th century charitable capitalism experiment that ended in the 1950s. This blog started looking at the homes that were supposed to be sold to African American home buyers, after decades of mainly renting to white tenants.

photo of property

Looking at WSIC properties they tend to have a pattern where the properties were sold to a three business partners, Nathaniel J. Taube, Nathan Levin and James B. Evans as the Colonial Investment Co. for $3 million dollars. Those partners sold to African American buyers. There was usually a foreclosure. Then the property wound up in the hands of George Basiliko and or the DC Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA). Then there was the odd lucky ones who managed to avoid that fate.

Let’s see what happens with 218 Q Street NW:

  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/51) Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 218 Q St NW to Mary A. Hall.
  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/1951) Ms. Hall borrowed $3,125 from Colonial Investment Co. favorite trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • January 1951 Evans, Levin and Taube sold the other one-half of 218 Q St NW to Helen R. and Walter Roberson.
  • January 1951 the Robersons borrowed $3,275 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • May 1953 the Robersons borrow $682.98 from trustees Roland Brown Jr and Jacob Sandler to pay a debt from Consolidated & Engineering Co., Inc.
  • December 1955 (recorded 2/2/1956) Ms. Hall sold her half of 218 Q St NW back to Evans, Levin and Taube.
  • January/ February 1958 the Robersons lost their half of 218 Q St NW to foreclosure. The property, via auction, it was returned to Evans, Taube and new partner Harry A. Badt.
  • February 1958 (recorded 7/3/1958) as part of a larger package, Evans, Taube, Badt (and their wives) and Levin’s survivors sell their interest in 218 Q St NW to Sophia and George Basiliko.
  • Eventually, July 1970, the Basilikos, as part of a larger property package, sell 218 Q St NW to the District of Columbia Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA).

Bad Photocopy-Bates St NW Alley 1960s-1970s maybe

So I made a photocopy of a photo and now I share it with you. There is nothing special about this alley, besides the fact that it is awfully trashy. There are other photographs and from the cars I’m guessing it is from the 1960s. But there was an image of a gentleman in a suit, which made me wonder if this could be from later. Dunno.

Alley view

 

That Martin Luther King speech I could never seem to locate

It’s Martin Luther King Jr Day so here’s my recycled MLK post.

Around about the early part of the year I go pecking about looking for the speech Rev. Martin Luther King Jr gave in Shaw. And I can never find it when I look. Poster-For-MLK-Parade

Today I was looking for a 1957 Church survey for a church that was at 1520 3rd St NW. But I can’t find that, but when I was looking for it, guess what I found? Yes, the King speech.

It seems it was part of a newsletter published by MICCO (Model Inner City Community Organization) run by Rev. Walter E. Fauntroy from 812 S St NW, which is New Bethel Baptist Church. As you can see from the above flier, Dr. King had an event in Shaw on March 12, 1967 and the newsletter was published the next day.

DC History Shaw MiccoNews MLK by Mm Inshaw on Scribd

Sorry for the quality of the copy. On the second page the first couple of words in the last 4 lines of the last paragraph are:

city. The
problems of crime
the people there to
that businessmen must

I’ll still look for that church survey…..

WSIC-1950 Sell Off- 14 O Street NW

The Washington Sanitary Improvement Company (WSIC) was a late 19th century charitable capitalism experiment that ended in the 1950s. This blog started looking at the homes that were supposed to be sold to African American home buyers, after decades of mainly renting to white tenants.

Looking at WSIC properties they tend to have a pattern where the properties were sold to a three business partners, Nathaniel J. Taube, Nathan Levin and James B. Evans as the Colonial Investment Co. for $3 million dollars. Those partners sold to African American buyers. There was usually a foreclosure. Then the property wound up in the hands of George Basiliko and or the DC Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA). Then there was the odd lucky ones who managed to avoid that fate.

photo of property

The history of 14 O Street NW went as so:

  • February 1951 Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 14 O St NW Marguerite and Vincent J. Edmondson.
  • February 1951 the Edmondsons borrowed $3,375 from Colonial Investment Co. favorite trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • February 1951 Evans, Levin and Taube sold the other half of 14 O St NW to Annie W. and William J. Jackson Jr.
  • February 1951 the Jacksons borrowed $3,375 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • 08/03/1956 the Edmondsons sold their half to Mary Dyson Lane.
  • December 1955 (recorded January 1958) the Jacksons sold their half back to Evans, Levin and Taube.
  • February 1960 the Edmondsons were foreclosed upon and the property returned to Evans, Taube and new partner Harry A. Badt. Mary Dayson Lane’s name appears in later documents relating to building’s condemnation in 1977.
  • February 1960 (recorded in May) the Badts transferred/sold their interest in 14 O St NW to Levin’s survivors as part of a larger property package.
  • November 1961 Badt, Evan, Taube, their wives (for legal reasons) and the survivors of Levin (and their spouses) sold 14 O St NW to Sophia and George Basiliko as part of a larger property package.
  • In 1971 George Basiliko sold part(?) 14 O St NW to Housing System Development and Construction Corp as part of a larger property package.
  • April 1978 George Basiliko sold (his remaining interest?) in 14 O St NW to the O Street Properties Partnership.

WSIC-1950 Sell Off- 224 Q Street NW

The Washington Sanitary Improvement Company (WSIC) was a late 19th century charitable capitalism experiment that ended in the 1950s. This blog started looking at the homes that were supposed to be sold to African American home buyers, after decades of mainly renting to white tenants.

Looking at WSIC properties they tend to have a pattern where the properties were sold to a three business partners, Nathaniel J. Taube, Nathan Levin and James B. Evans as the Colonial Investment Co. for $3 million dollars. Those partners sold to African American buyers. There was usually a foreclosure. Then the property wound up in the hands of George Basiliko and or the DC Redevelopment Land Agency (RLA). Then there was the odd lucky ones who managed to avoid that fate.

photo of property

Let’s look at the post WSIC history of 224 Q St NW:

  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/51) Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 224 Q St NW to Sarah B. Carroll.
  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/1951) the widow Sarah Carroll borrowed $3,125 from Colonial Investment Co. favorite trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/51) Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 224 Q St NW to Christine B. and Jesse J. Carter.
  • December 1950 (recorded 1/18/1951) the Carters borrowed $3,125 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • August 1953 Mrs. Carroll lost her half of 224 Q St NW to foreclosure and via auction, it was returned to Evans, Taube and Levin.
  • September 1953 Evans, Levin and Taube sold one-half of 224 Q St NW to Freda A. and Zollie Lumberger. *Side note- they were a Black couple. See Zollie’s brother’s obit w/ picture.
  • September 1953 the Lumbergers borrowed $3,888.43 from trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.
  • July 1954 the Carters lost their half of the property to foreclosure and via auction, it was returned to Evans, Levin, and Taube.
  • June 1959 as part of a larger package, Evans, Taube, new partner Harry A. Badt (and their wives) and Levin’s survivors sell their interest in 200 Q St NW to Sophia and George Basiliko.
  • April 1969 the Lumbergers settled their debt with trustees Abraham H. Levin and Robert G. Weightman.

It appears that this property was not sold to RLA and I can’t tell if and when it was consolidated under one owner.