African American Organizations in the History of Lafayette County, Missouri (printed in 1881)

African American Organizations in the History of Lafayette County, Missouri (printed in 1881)
Contributed by Cindy

St. Johns M.E. Church, organized in 1865. The original members were: Briston Ragsdale, Howard Inman, Dolly Ragsdale, L. Hagood, John Clady, Mary Inman, Heal Davis, Bartlet Martin, D. Smith, Fanny Buford, Z. Foster. In 1868 a brick edifice was built at a cost of $3,000. Since the organization of this church, the following pastors have been in charge: Revs. Crawford, J. Flamer, S. Taylor, R.H. Smith, A. Lee, H.H. Brown, H. Thompson, J. Dager, L.M. Hazard and R. rush; the latter being in charge at the present time. The church has a present membership of 75. A regular organized Sunday school is connected with the church, numbering 72 pupils; superintended by Mrs. Mary Turney, assisted by a corps of ten teachers.

Zion Chapel – The African M.E. Church, was organized October 13, 1867, on College street, in Lexington. the names of the members of the first organization were: Nelson Coleman, Bettie Langhorn, Edith Wilson, Dandrage Johnson, and Daniel Jenkins. The first church building was built of wood in 1867. The building cost $2,000. A new building of brick was built in the year 1870 at a cost of $4,000 and was dedicated by Bishop T.M.D. Ward, of Anacostia, D.C. July 3, 1881. Their pastors have been Revs. S. Washington, James Madison, John M. Wilkerson, J.N. Triplette, W.L. Harroad, W.A. Dove, J.C.C. Owens; number of membership is 137. Nelson Coleman is the oldest member now alive and is a local minister. and lead the way to the organization. Bettie Langhorn died march 29, 1880, at the age of 103 years. The church is clear of debt. They also have a Sabbath school organization, with an attendance of about 80 pupils and a library of 260 volumes. The first superintendent was P.R. Coleman; its present superintendent is G.L. Hughes.

Dickson Lodge No. 11, A.F. and A.M., instituted by Moses Dickson, grand master, January 19, 1869. Charter issued in July of same year. The charter members were as follows: James Madison, D. Jinkins, George May, George Washington, B. Jackson, C.R. Colman, P. Colman, J. Jackson, Albert Walker, Nelson Berry, B. Martin, Jackson Arnold, ? Arnold, A. Bailies, Thornton Doniphan, Lewis Johnson, J. McGee, L. Johnson, A. Steele, Geo. Homes, P. Jackson. the first officers were: Rev. James Madison, W.M.; D. Jinkins, W.S.; Martin May, J.W.; A. Steele, S.D.; Albert Walker, J.D.; Jessie McGee, Tyler; C.R. Colman, treasurer; George Washington, secretary. The present officers are: Albert Walker, W.M.; H. Gates, S.W.; S. Slaughter, J.W.; Hinson Baker, S.D.; H. Colly, J.D.; John Moune, Tyler; J. Haygood and J. Hawkins, stewards; Martin May, treasurer; S. Lewis, secretary. The members at the present time number 36. The lodge meet in a frame building, rented for that purpose. the following are Grand Lodge officers: Charles Colman, grand pursuivant; P. Colman, grand steward; Albert Walker, grand S.D.; James Madison, grand chaplain. The following deaths have occurred among the members of this lodge since its organization, the funeral services have been conducted under its auspices: George Washing, Alexander Poindexter, Wm. Martin, and George Walker.

Other African American organizations in that county were Knights of Tabor and United Sons of Protection, but they did not furnish reports for this history.