Annotated Bibliography on
the Black Church in America
The works listed below are provided to suggest useful resources
for the study of the black church in America. These works represent
a variety of religious and political viewpoints and in no way
represents the complete picture. This bibliography attempts to
highlight a facet of the black church that is too often ignored—its
unquestioned connection to historic evangelical Protestant
Ahlstrom, Sidney E. A Religious History of the
American People. New Haven: Yale Univ. Press, 1972.
Banks, William L. The Black Church in the U.S.
Chicago: Moody Press, 1972.
Barnes, Gilbert Hobbs. The Antislavery Impulse,
1830-1844. 1933. Reprint. Gloucester, Mass.: 1957. An
interesting work stressing the involvement of evangelical Christians
over liberals such as Unitarian William Lloyd Garrison in the
American antislavery movement.
Bentley, William H. "Bible Believers in the Black
Community." In The Evangelicals: What They Believe, Who They
Are, Where They Are Changing, edited by David F. Wells and John
D. Woodbridge. Nashville: Abingdon, 1975.
Boyer, Horace Clarence. How Sweet the Sound: The
Golden Age of Gospel. Washington, D.C.: Elliott & Clark, 1995.
Boyer's book provides an introduction to the history of black gospel
Burgess, Stanley M., and Gary B. McGee, ed.
Dictionary of Pentecostal and Charismatic Movements. Grand
Rapids: Zondervan Regency Reference Library, 1988. Notes the
important contributions of African Americans in the history of
Pentecostalism, notably in the articles "Azusa Street Revival" (pp.
31-36); "Black Holiness-Pentecostalism" (pp. 77-84); "Church of God
in Christ (CGIC)" (pp. 204-5); "Mason, Charles Harrison" (pp.
585-87), and "Seymour, William Joseph" (pp. 778-81).
Campbell, James T. Songs of Zion: The African
Methodist Episcopal Church in the United States and South Africa.
Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1998. A scholarly
parallel history of the AME in the United States and its overseas
branch in South Africa.
Clarke, Erskine. Wrestlin' Jacob: A Portrait of
Religion in the Old South. Atlanta: John Knox Press, 1979. A
discussion of white efforts at the evangelization of slaves,
stressing both successes and failures, the book details the work of
white preachers such as Charles Colcock Jones of Georgia.
Evans, Tony. Let's Get to Know Each Other.
Nashville: Nelson, 1994. Details Tony's thoughts on a biblical basis
for racial reconciliation.
Fauset, Arthur Huff. Black Gods of the
Metropolis. 1944. Reprint. New York: Octagon, 1974. On black
cults in Philadelphia (e.g., Father Divine), the work is a
recognized standard on black cults despite its geographical
Fitts, Leroy. A History of Black Baptists.
Nashville: Broadman, 1985. A useful work.
Frazier, E. Franklin. The Negro Church in
America, and C. Eric Lincoln. The Black Church Since
Frazier. (2 vols. in 1.) New York: Schocken Books, 1974. In an
influential work, Frazier describes the central place of the church
in African American life.
Galli, Mark. "Defeating the Conspiracy."
Christian History, vol. 18, no. 2, 1999, pp. 12-17. Discusses
the growth of the black church in the South from the beginnings of
slavery to the end of the Civil War.
Handy, Robert T. "Negro Christianity and American
Church Historiography." In Reinterpretations in American Church
History. Edited by Jerald C. Braner. Chicago: University of
Chicago Press, 1968.
Hughes, Langston; Milton Meltzer; C. Eric Lincoln,
and Jon Michael Spencer. A Pictorial History of African
Americans. 6th updated ed. New York: Crown, 1995. A popular
introduction to black history.
Jackson, Joseph H. A Story of Christian Activism:
The History of the National Baptist Convention, U.S.A., Inc.
Nashville: Townsend Press, 1980. A massive (nearly 800 pages) work.
Jackson, president of the NBC from 1953 to 1982, was known as a
conservative for preferring legal means to civil disobedience as the
vehicle of the civil rights movement. He clashed with Martin Luther
King, Jr., who in turn led a split, the Progressive National
Baptists. Jackson spends only about 200 pages on the history of the
convention prior to his presidency; the rest of the book is a reason
for his position.
Johnson, James Weldon. God's Trombones. New
York: Viking Press, 1955. A collection of poems based on black
preaching that reveals something of the power of the black pulpit;
Johnson was a leader in the "Harlem Renaissance" and not necessarily
sympathetic to conservative Christianity, but his poems generally
treat the Scripture and the old-time black preacher with respect.
Johnson's preface on the role of the black preacher is particularly
Jones, Charles Edwin. Black Holiness: A Guide to
the Study of Black Participation in Wesleyan Perfectionist and
Glossolalic Pentecostal Movements. ATLA Bibliography Series,
No. 18. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, 1987. An invaluable
Journal of Negro History.
This important resource in African American history
was founded by Carter Woodson in 1916. There are many references to
specific articles from this journal in the entries that follow.
Kaplan, Sidney. The Black Presence in the Era of
the American Revolution 1770-1800. New York: New York Graphic
Society, 1972. See Chapter 3, "The Black Clergy" (pp. 73-108).
King, Martin Luther, Jr. Testament of Hope:
Essential Writings of Martin Luther King Jr. San Francisco:
Lincoln, C. Eric, and Lawrence H. Mamiya. The
Black Church in the African American Experience. Durham, N.C.:
Duke Univ. Press, 1990. Probably the best available book on the
subject. Pages 20-91 survey the history of the major black
Martin, Sandy D. Black Baptists and African
Missions: The Origins of a Movement 1880-1915. Macon, Ga.:
Mercer Univ. Press, 1989. Discusses how black American Baptists
developed an interest in missions to Africa and how that interest in
turn affected the views of African American Baptists.
McBeth, H. Leon. The Baptist Heritage.
Nashville: Broadman, 1987. See pp. 776-90 on the black Baptists.
―――. Images of the Black Church in America."
Baptist History and Heritage 16 (1981): 19-29, 40. A highly
useful introductory article by a Southern Baptist historian; he
surveys five influential books on the black church—The Black
Church (1903) by W.E.B. Du Bois, The History of the Negro
Church (1921) by Carter G. Woodson, The Negro Church in
America (1964) by E. Franklin Frazier, Black Religion
(1964) by Joseph Washington, and Black Theology and Black Power
(1969) by James Cone—then discusses how each views the black church
in America. The article is a beneficial introduction to the
Montgomery, William E. Under Their Own Vine and
Fig Tree: The African-American Church in the South 1865-1900.
Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ. Press, 1993. A scholarly work on
the southern black churches after the Civil War.
Murphy, Larry G.; J. Gordon Melton; and Gary L. Ward,
ed. Encyclopedia of African American Religions. New York:
Garland, 1993. An extremely thorough and helpful work.
Murray, Andrew E. Presbyterians and the Negro—A
History. Philadelphia: Presbyterian Historical Society, 1966. A
first-rate study of African American participation in American
Oates, Steven B. Let the Trumpet Sound: The Life
of Martin Luther King, Jr. New York: Harper and Row, 1982.
Pannell, William. "The Religious Heritage of Blacks."
In The Evangelicals: What They Believe, Who They Are, Where They
Are Changing, edited by David F. Wells and John D. Woodbridge.
Nashville: Abingdon, 1975, pp. 96-107.
Payne, Wardell J. ed., Directory of African
American Religious Bodies. Washington, D.C.: Howard Univ.
Press, 1991. A helpful guide along the lines of The Yearbook of
Canadian and American Churches.
Pelt, Owen D. The Story of the National Baptists.
New York: Vantage Press, 1960. The long-time standard history of the
largest black denomination in the United States.
Raboteau, Albert J. "The Black Experience in American
Evangelicalism: The Meaning of Slavery." In The Evangelical
Tradition in America, edited by Leonard Sweet. Macon, Ga.:
Mercer Univ. Press, 1984, pp. 181-97.
———. A Fire in the Bones: Reflections on
African-American Religious History. Boston: Beacon Press, 1995.
A collection of essays by a black historian.
———. Slave Religion: The "Invisible Institution"
in the Antebellum South. New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 1978. A
standard and highly influential work.
Sanneh, Lamin, "Prelude to African Christian
Independency: The Afro-American Factor in African Christianity."
Harvard Theological Review 77 (1984): 1-32.
Sernett, Milton C., ed. Afro-American Religious
History: A Documentary Witness. Durham, N.C.: Duke Univ. Press,
1985. A first-rate collection of original sources.
———. Black Religion and American Evangelicalism.
Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow Press, 1975. A first-rate, balanced work
on black religion before the Civil War.
———. "Black Religion and the Question of Evangelical
Identity." In The Variety of American Evangelicalism,
edited by Donald Dayton and Robert K. Johnson. Downer's Grove, Ill.:
InterVarsity Press, 1991, pp. 135-47.
———. Bound for the Promised Land: African
American Religion and the Great Migration. Durham, N.C.: Duke
Univ. Press, 1997. An excellent scholarly study on the migration of
African Americans from the rural South to the urban North in the
20th century and how that migration affected the black church.
Sidwell, Mark. "Black Baptist Pioneers of the South."
Frontline, vol. 5, no. 4 (1995): 14-15. On the careers of
George Liele, David George, and Andrew Bryan.
———. Free Indeed: Heroes of Black Christian
History. Greenville, S.C.: Bob Jones Univ. Press, 1995. Written
as a supplementary textbook on the junior/senior high level, the
book provides and brief overview of African American church history
and then provides biographical sketches of thirteen notable black
preachers, including Richard Allen, Daniel Payne, and Charles
———. "The Fruit of Freedom." Christian History
vol. 18, no. 2 (1999): 38-41. Provides sketches of the careers of
Phillis Wheatley, Lemuel Haynes, John Stewart, Jarena Lee, and
———. "Stonewall Jackson's Black Sunday School and the
Religious Instruction of Slaves." Biblical Viewpoint vol.
28, no. 2 (1994): 88-97. Reviews the contribution of Thomas J.
("Stonewall") Jackson to the Southern movement for the religious
instruction of slaves.
Skinner, Tom. Black and Free. Grand Rapids:
Zondervan, 1970. Riveting autobiography by a black evangelist and
converted gang leader from Harlem.
Smith, Edward D. Climbing Jacob's Ladder: The
Rise of Black Churches in Eastern American Cities, 1740-1877.
Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1988. Beautifully
designed and exceptionally well illustrated.
Walker, Clarence Earl. A Rock in a Weary Land:
The African Methodist Episcopal Church During the Civil War and
Reconstruction. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ. Press, 1982.
White, Daniel, III, ed. When Black Preachers
Preach. Atlanta: Torch Publications, 1994. A collection of
sermons and essays by preachers.
Woodson, Carter G. The History of the Negro
Church. 3rd ed. 1945. Reprint, Washington, D.C.: The Associated
Publishers, 1992. The long-time standard and still very useful for
pre-20th century history.
———, ed. Negro Orators and Their Orations.
1925. Reprint. New York: Russell and Russell, 1969. Among the
orations are addresses by noted black preachers.
Wyatt-Brown, Bertram. Lewis Tappan and the
Evangelical War Against Slavery. New York: Atheneum, 1971.
Young, Henry J. Major Black Religious Leaders,
1755-1940. Nashville: Abingdon, 1977. A series of brief
sketches of the theology of some major black leaders, the author
includes sketches of some orthodox figures (e.g., Richard Allen and
Sources on Specific African American Christian Leaders
John Marrant (1755-91)
Converted under the preaching of George Whitefield
in Charleston around 1760, Marrant later became an early missionary
to the Indians. He eventually traveled to England, where he became
associated with Selina, Countess of Huntington, and the Calvinistic
Methodist Connexion. That group in turn sent him to Nova Scotia to
minister to a colony of blacks there as well as to the Indians.
Potkay, Adam, and Sandra Burr, ed. Black Atlantic
Writers of the 18th Century. New York: St. Martin's Press,
1995. Contains the most accurate available version of A
Narrative of the Life of John Marrant (Marrant's brief
autobiography) and a sermon Marrant preached in 1789 (pp. 67-122).
Saillant, John. "Hymnody and the Persistence of an
African-American Faith in Sierra Leone." The Hymn, January
1997, pp. 8-17. In giving the background of the free colony in
Sierra Leone, Saillant discusses the work of Marrant, giving more
detail of his work in Canada and noting the influence of music and
Calvinism in Marrant's thought.
Shields, John. "John Marrant (1755-1791)." In
American Writing Before 1800, edited by James A. Levernier and
Douglas R. Wilmes. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1983, 2:
George Liele (c. 1750-1828)
Liele is known partly for helping found the Silver
Bluff Baptist Church in South Carolina (across the Savannah River
from Augusta, Georgia), one of the first African American
congregations in the U.S. He is even more famous, however, as a
pioneer missionary to Jamaica, where he helped establish the
Baptists in that island.
Brooks, Walter. "The Priority of the Silver Bluff
Church and Its Promoters." Journal of Negro History 7
Davis, John W. "George Liele and Andrew Bryan,
Pioneer Negro Baptist Preachers." Journal of Negro History
3 (1918): 119-27.
Holmes, E. A. "George Liele: Negro Slavery's Prophet
of Deliverance." Baptist Quarterly 20 (1964): 340-51, 361.
Probably the best single source on Liele's life.
"Letters Showing the Rise and Progress of the Early
Negro Churches of Georgia and the West Indies." Journal of Negro
History 1 (1916): 69-92.
Rusling, G. W. "A Note on Early Negro Baptist
History." Foundations 11 (1968): 362-68. A useful
supplement to Holmes's article.
Sernett, Milton. "The Expatriate Option."
Christian History, vol. 18, no. 2, 1999.
David George (1743-1810)
A former slave, George was a coworker with George
Liele in Georgia and the main leader of the Silver Bluff Baptist
Church. After the Revolution, he immigrated to Nova Scotia, where he
ministered among the Loyalist exiles. Eventually, he and his church
went to the free colony of Sierra Leone in Africa.
Gordon, Grant. From Slavery to Freedom: The Life
of David George, Pioneer Black Baptist Minister. Hantsport,
Nova Scotia: Lancelot Press, 1992. A full study of all the available
materials concerning George's career.
Paris, Peter J., Jr. "David George: Paramount
Ancestor of the Black Churches in the United States, Canada and
Sierra Leone." Criterion, Winter 1996, pp. 2-9.
Andrew Bryan (1737-1812)
A former slave and a convert of George Liele,
Bryan was one of the founders and first pastor of the First African
Baptist Church of Savannah. He underwent much persecution, including
a public whipping, to establish this work.
Davis, John W. "George Liele and Andrew Bryan,
Pioneer Negro Baptist Preachers." Journal of Negro History
3 (1918): 119-27.
Gallay, Alan. "Planters and Slaves in the Great
Awakening." In Masters and Slaves in the House of the Lord.
Edited by John B. Boles. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky,
1988, pp. 19-36. This article on the Bryans—the family that owned,
supported, and later freed Andrew Bryan—describes their conversion
under George Whitefield and their vain struggles to reform slavery.
"Letters Showing the Rise and Progress of the Early
Negro Churches of Georgia and the West Indies." Journal of Negro
History 1 (1916): 69-92.
Simms, James M. The First Colored Baptist Church
in North America. 1888. Reprint. New York: Negro Universities
Press, 1969. On the history of Bryan's church, the First African
Baptist Church of Savannah—not truly "the first" but certainly one
of the earliest African American congregations in the U.S.
Richard Allen (1760-1831)
Founder of the African Methodist Episcopal Church,
Allen is one of the most important figures in black church history.
A convert to Methodism, Liele purchased his freedom from slavery and
became a successful preacher. Discrimination from white Methodists
caused Allen and several others to form a separate body. Later in
life, he became a leading opponent of efforts to send all free
blacks as colonists to Africa.
Allen. Richard. The Life Experience and Gospel
Labors of the Rt. Rev. Richard Allen. New York: Abingdon, 1960.
Allen's own writings; brief but useful and illuminating.
George, Carol V. R. Segregated Sabbaths. New
York: Oxford Univ. Press, 1973. Probably the standard work on Allen.
Gravely, Will. "You Must Not Kneel Here."
Christian History, vol. 18, no. 2, 1999, pp. 34-36.
Klots, Steve. Richard Allen: Religious Leader and
Social Activist. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1991. A
very good biography for teens.
Nash, Gary B. "New Light on Richard Allen."
William and Mary Quarterly 46 (1989): 332-40. An interesting,
if minor, study of some details concerning Allen's early years.
"Some Letters of Richard Allen and Absalom Jones to
Dorothy Ripley." Journal of Negro History 1 (1916): 436-43.
Harry Hosier (1750?-1806)
Popularly known as "Black Harry," Hosier traveled
with Bishop Francis Asbury throughout the South, preaching with
great success to both black and white audiences.
Licorish, Joshua E. "Harry Hosier." In
Encyclopedia of World Methodism. Nashville: United Methodist
Publishing House, 1974, 1: 1157-58.
Smith, Warren Thomas. "Harry Hosier: Black Preacher
Extraordinary." Journal of the Interdenominational Theological
Center 7 (1980): 111-28.
Lemuel Haynes (1753-1833)
A Congregationalist pastor in New England during
the Second Great Awakening, Haynes was perhaps the first African
American to pastor a white congregation. An heir of Puritan
theology, Haynes was one of the most orthodox and most articulate
black preachers in American history. He was particularly known as an
opponent of Universalism and openly disputed with Universalist
spokesman Hosea Ballou.
Bogin, Ruth. "‘Liberty Further Extended': A 1776
Antislavery Manuscript by Lemuel Haynes." William and Mary
Quarterly 40 (1983): 85-105. First publication of a manuscript
opposing slavery written by Haynes during the Revolutionary War.
Brown, Richard D. "‘Not Only Extreme Poverty, but the
Worst Kind of Orphanage': Lemuel Haynes and the Boundaries of Racial
Tolerance on the Yankee Frontier, 1770-1802." New England
Quarterly 61 (1988): 502-18. A good overview of Haynes's career
that takes recent literature into account.
Cooley, Timothy Mather. Sketches of the Life and
Character of the Rev. Lemuel Haynes. 1837. Reprint. New York:
Negro Universities Press, 1969. The best work on Haynes.
Haynes, Lemuel. Black Preacher to White America:
The Collected Writings of Lemuel Haynes, 1774-1833. Edited by
Richard Newman. Brooklyn: Carlson, 1990. An invaluable collection of
Jelks, Randal. "The Character and Work of a Spiritual
Watchman Described: The Preaching of Lemuel Haynes and Quest for
Personal Freedom." Fides et Historia 26 (1994): 126-33. A
review of Newman's edition of Haynes's works, the article provides
an interesting analysis but seems to approach Haynes more in racial
and sociopolitical terms than in religious ones.
"Lemuel Haynes." In Annals of the American
Pulpit, edited by William B. Sprague. Vol. 2, Part 2.
Trinitarian Congregational. Reprint. New York: Arno Press, 1969, pp.
176-87. Includes a letter written by Timothy Cooley, Haynes's main
Morse, W. H. "Lemuel Haynes." Journal of Negro
History 4 (1919): 22-32.
Newman, Richard. Lemuel Haynes: A
Bio-Bibliography. New York. Lambeth Press, 1984. A useful
compilation of all known information on primary and secondary
sources concerning Haynes.
John Chavis (c. 1763-1838)
Presbyterian evangelist during the Second Great
Awakening and later educator in North Carolina, he was one of the
most influential blacks in the antebellum South.
Boyd, Daniel L. "Free-Born Negro: The Life of John
Chavis." Bachelor's thesis, Princeton University, 1947. A very good
source on Chavis, marred by the author's understandable lack of
Brawley, Benjamin. Negro Builders and Heroes.
Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1937.
DesChamps, Margaret Burr. "John Chavis as a Preacher
to Whites." North Carolina Historical Review 32 (1955):
Franklin, John Hope. The Free Negro in North
Carolina 1790-1860. 1943. Reprint. New York: Russell and
Hudson, Gossie. "John Chavis, 1763-1838: A
Social-Psychological Study." Journal of Negro History 64
(1979): 142-56. Somewhat psychological in focus, but contains some
Knight, E. W. "Notes on John Chavis." North
Carolina Historical Review 7 (1930): 326-45. The best available
source on Chavis.
Larson, Rachel. "John Chavis." In Faith of Our
Fathers: Scenes from American Church History, edited by Mark
Sidwell. Greenville, S.C.: Bob Jones Univ. Press, 1991, pp. 79-83.
Mangum, Willie Person. The Papers of Willie
Person Mangum. 5 vols. Edited by Henry Thomas Shanks. Raleigh,
N.C.: State Department of Archives and History, 1950. Mangum was an
influential Whig politician in nineteenth-century North Carolina.
Volumes 1 and 2 contain over twenty letters written from Chavis to
Savage, W. Sherman. "The Influence of John Chavis and
Lunsford Lane on the History of North Carolina." Journal of
Negro History 25 (1940): 14-24.
John Stewart (c. 1786-1823)
A free-born Virginia black, Stewart was converted
in Marietta, Ohio, and he joined the Methodists. Stewart went as a
missionary to the Wyandot Indians in northern Ohio, where he saw
some success in preaching the gospel before his early death. His
grave in Upper Sandusky, Ohio, is now a Methodist shrine.
Finley, James B. Life Among the Indians.
Edited by D. W. Clark. Cincinnati: Cranston and Curtis, 1859.
Marsh, Thelma R. Moccasin Trails to the Cross: A
History of the Mission to the Wyandott Indians on the Sandusky
Plains. Upper Sandusky, Ohio: United Methodist Historical
Society of Ohio, 1974.
Mitchell, Joseph. The Missionary Pioneer; or a
Brief Memoir of the Life, Labours, and Death of John Stewart, Man of
Color. 1827. Reprint. Austin: The Pemberton Press, 1969. The
best source on Stewart's life.
Thomas, Frank Morehead. "At the Grave of John
Stewart." Methodist Quarterly Review 68 (April 1919):
Lott Carey (c. 1780-1828)
Carey was a pioneer missionary to Africa. Born a
slave in Virginia, he was converted while working in Richmond. He
purchased his freedom, became first a lay exhorter and then a
licensed Baptist preacher. He went to Liberia in the 1820s as one of
the first American missionaries to that continent and one of the
founders of that nation. (Note: As the sources listed below
demonstrate, his last name was sometimes spelled Carey and
Fisher, Miles Mark. "Lott Cary, The Colonizing
Missionary." Journal of Negro History 7 (1922): 380-418,
Fitts, Leroy. Lott Carey: First Black Missionary
to Africa. Valley Forge, Pa.: Judson Press, 1978.
Gurley, Ralph Randolph. "Sketch of the Life of the
Rev. Lott Cary." In Life of Jehudi Ashmun, Late Colonial Agent
in Liberia, pp. 147-60. 1839. Reprint. Freeport, N.Y.: Books
for Libraries Press, 1971.
"Lott Cary." In Annals of the American Pulpit,
edited by William B. Sprague. Vol. 6. Baptist. Reprint. New York:
Arno Press, 1969, pp. 578-87.
Poe. William A. "Lott Cary: Man of Purchased
Freedom." Church History 39 (1970): 49-61.
John Jasper (1812-1901)
A former slave preacher, Jasper became a leading
black preacher in the post-Civil War South. A powerful orator,
despite his dialect, he is best known for the sermon "The Sun Do
Day, Richard Ellsworth. Rhapsody in Black: The
Life Story of John Jasper. Philadelphia: Judson Press, 1953.
Fant, Clyde E., and William M. Pinson, Jr. "John
Jasper." In 20 Centuries of Great Preaching. Vol. 4.
Newman to Robertson. Waco: Word Books, 1971, pp. 226-57.
Hatcher, William E. John Jasper: The Unmatched
Negro Philosopher and Preacher. 1908. Reprint. New York: Negro
Universities Press, 1969. The best biography of Jasper, although
Hatcher seems a little condescending in a few places.
Honan, William Holmes. "John Jasper and the Sermon
that Moved the Sun." Speech Monographs 23 (1956): 255-61.
Daniel Payne (1811-93)
Educator and bishop in the African Methodist
Episcopal Church, Payne was free-born in Charleston, S.C. Driven out
of the South by legislation prohibiting the education of blacks, he
moved to the North, where he attended seminary and became a pastor.
There Payne also became a staunch advocate of the abolition of
slavery. He helped found Wilberforce University near Xenia, Ohio.
Coan, Josephus R. Daniel Alexander
Payne—Christian Educator. Philadelphia: The A.M.E. Book
Concern, 1935. Probably the best biography of Payne and containing
some illuminating quotations from Payne's personal journal, but
inferior in interest level to Payne's autobiography.
Griffin, Paul R. "The Black Rational Orthodox Impulse
in the Post Civil War African-American Experience." Fides et
Historia, vol. 23, no. 3 (1991), pp. 43-56. On the views of
Payne and two other post-Civil War black Methodist leaders.
Payne, Daniel A. "Bishop Daniel Alexander Payne's
Protestation of American Slavery." Journal of Negro History
52 (1967): 59-64. An 1839 address by Payne urging Lutherans to adopt
an official report calling for the end of slavery in America.
———. History of the African Methodist Episcopal
Church. 1891. Reprint. New York: Arno Press and the New York
Times, 1969. Payne's masterwork and a valuable source on the history
of the AME Church but sometimes stultifying in its depth of detail
and ponderous style.
———. Recollections of Seventy Years. 1888.
Reprint. New York: Arno Press and the New York Times, 1968. Payne's
autobiography and one of the best sources on his life; generally
———. Sermons and Addresses, 1853-1891.
Edited by Charles Killian. New York: Arno Press, 1972.
Steumpfle, Herman G. "Daniel Alexander Payne as Hymn
Writer." The Hymn, January 1993, pp. 29-31.
Samuel Morris (1873-93)
A native of the Ivory Coast, Morris came to
America to study so that he might return to preach to his people. He
died while attending Taylor University in Indiana, but the story of
his life inspired others to volunteer for missionary service.
Baldwin, Lindley. Samuel Morris. 1942.
Reprint. Minneapolis: Bethany House, n.d. The best biography of
Morris, although very popular in style.
Reade, Thaddeus C. Samuel Morris (Prince Kaboo).
"Edition of 1924." Upland, Ind.: Taylor Univ. Press, 1924. A brief,
best-selling pamphlet that was probably most responsible for
publicizing Morris's life story and bringing financial stability to
Ringenberg. William C. Taylor University: The
First 150 Years. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1996.
Matthew Anderson (1845-1928)
"Pastor, churchman, and social reformer," as the
journal article below describes him, Anderson was Presbyterian
pastor in Philadelphia. He was a graduate of Oberlin College and one
of the first black students at Princeton Theological Seminary.
Anderson, Matthew. Presbyterianism: Its Relation
to the Negro. Philadelphia: John McGill White & Co., 1897. Both
Anderson's autobiography and his plea for outreach to the black
community by the Presbyterian church.
Trotman, C. James. "Matthew Anderson: Black Pastor,
Churchman, and Social Reformer." American Presbyterianism
66 (1988): 11-21.
Francis J. Grimké (1850-1937)
A graduate of Princeton Seminary (where he was a
classmate of Matthew Anderson), Grimké was the long-time pastor of
Fifteenth Street Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C. He was a
theological conservative ("a Negro Puritan," according to a
biographer) and an unflinching advocate of black civil rights.
Bruce, Dickson D. Archibald Grimké: Portrait of a
Black Independent. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State Univ. Press,
1993. A biography of Francis Grimké's older brother that also is
useful for studying Francis Grimké‚ especially his early years.
Grimké, Francis J. "Victory for the Allies and the
United States a Ground of Rejoicing, of Thanksgiving." In Negro
Orators and Their Orations, edited by Carter Woodson. 1925.
Reprint. New York: Russell and Russell, 1969, pp. 690-708.
———. The Works of Francis James Grimké.
Washington: The Associated Publishers, 1942. 4 vols.
Ferry, Henry Justin. "Francis James Grimké: Portrait
of a Black Puritan." Ph.D. diss., Yale University, 1970.
———. "Patriotism and Protest: Francis James Grimké on
World War I." Journal of Religious Thought 32 (1975):
———. "Racism and Reunion: A Black Protest by Francis
James Grimké." Journal of Presbyterian History 50 (1972):
Olmstead, Clifton E. "Francis James Grimké
(1850-1937): Christian Moralist and Civil Rights." In Sons of
the Prophets: Leaders in Protestantism from Princeton Seminary,
edited by Hugh T. Kerr. Princeton: Princeton Univ. Press, 1963, pp.
Sidwell, Mark. "Francis Grimké and the
Fundamentalists." Biblical Viewpoint vol. 32, no. 1 (1998):
———. "Francis James Grimké and the Value and Limits
of Carter Woodson's Model of the Progressive Black Pastor."
Fides et Historia 32 (2000): 99-117.
Weeks, Louis B., III. "Racism, World War I and the
Christian Life: Francis James Grimké in the Nation's Capital."
Journal of Presbyterian History 51 (1973): 471-88.
Charles Tindley (1851-1933)
Eloquent Methodist pastor and hymn writer, he is
best known for his large ministry in Philadelphia and his songs such
as "Nothing Between" and "Stand By Me." His song "I'll Overcome Some
Day" was adopted and altered by the civil rights movement as "We
Costen, Melva W. "Hymn Interpretation: 'Stand by
Me.'" The Hymn. January 1995, pp. 40-41.
Heinze, Lee. "Charles A. Tindley—Preacher, Pastor,
Hymnwriter," Fundamentalist Journal, December 1985, pp.
Jones, Ralph H. Charles Albert Tindley: Prince of
Preachers (Nashville: Abingdon, 1982) A good biography,
certainly the best available resource, but suffering from a lack of
bibliography and footnotes.
Konig, Linda. "Charles Albert Tindley, Black Gospel
Musician." The Church Musician, January 1988, pp. 18-19.
Reagon, Bernice Johnson, ed. We'll Understand It
Better By and By: Pioneering African American Gospel Composers.
Washington: Smithsonian Institute Press, 1992. Contains two articles
on the career and songs of Tindley (pp. 37-78); also includes
articles on other black gospel song writers, including Thomas Dorsey
("Take My Hand, Precious Lord," "Peace in the Valley") and Kenneth
Morris ("Just a Closer Walk with Thee," "My God Is Real").
Tindley, Charles A. Book of Sermons.
Philadelphia: Charles A. Tindley, 1932.
Charles Price Jones (1865-1949)
Founder of the Church of Christ (Holiness),
U.S.A., a group similar to the Nazarenes in doctrine, Jones was a
major leader among black holiness Christians. He was also a popular
gospel songwriter. He split with C. H. Mason, founder of the
Pentecostal Church of God in Christ, over the matter of tongues.
Cobbins, Otho, ed. History of Church of Christ
(Holiness) U.S.A., 1895-1965. New York: Vantage Press, 1966.
Spencer, Jon Michael. "The Hymnody of Charles Price
Jones and the Church of Christ (Holiness) USA." Black Sacred
Music: A Journal of Theomusicology 4 (1990): 14-29.
John Perkins (1930- )
The founder of Voice of Calvary ministries,
Perkins is an evangelical minister involved not only in evangelistic
and discipleship ministries but also in projects designed to foster
economic development of poor black communities, notably in his
native Mississippi. Perkins has also been involved in civil rights
activity, such as promoting black voter registration. Often opposed,
he received national notice after suffering a vicious beating by a
Mississippi sheriff and his deputies.
Balmer, Randall. Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory.
New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 1989. See pp. 138-54 for a discussion
of Perkins and the impact of his work in Mississippi.
Berk, Stephen E. A Time to Heal: John Perkins,
Community Development, and Racial Reconciliation. Grand Rapids:
Baker, 1997. A full biography with very useful discussions of the
relationship of the black church to Evangelicalism.
Norton, Will. "A Day in the Life of a Black
Fundamentalist." Eternity. 9 September 1971, pp. 22-24, 42.
Perkins. John. Let Justice Roll Down.
Glendale, Calif.: Regal Books, 1976. His autobiography; very
———. "Voice of Calvary Ministries: A Case Study."
Journal of Christian Reconstruction 9 (1982): 68-73.
———. "Who Speaks for the Black Community?"
Presbyterion 18 (1992): 111-16.
———. With Justice for All. Ventura, Calif.:
Regal Books, 1982.
Rinehart, Paula. "John Perkins and the Voice of
Calvary." Discipleship Journal. 1 January 1985, pp. 18-23.
Whalin, W. Terry. John Perkins. Grand
Rapids: Zondervan, 1996. A young people's biography for ages 8-12.