Knox College Struggle and Progress-African Americans in Knox County, Illinois (Knox College)
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Notes on Negro churches
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TitleNotes on Negro churches
DescriptionNotes taken by by Knox College Professor of Sociology, J. Howell Atwood about African American churches in Galesburg, Illinois, probably in the early 1940s. The notes relate to the financial situations and to revenue generating endeavors of the Second Baptist Church and Allen Chapel A.M.E. Church. Atwood conducted extensive research from 1930-1960 about the Galesburg African American community and was involved in the activities of that community, including church activities.
Named PersonMcWhorter, Rev.; Booker, Mrs.; Green, Rev.; Chandler, Mrs.; Creighton, Mrs.;
AuthorAtwood, Jesse Howell
IdentifierJ. Howell Atwood Manuscript Collection (box 9)
CollectionStruggle and Progress-African Americans in Knox County, Illinois (Knox College)
Date Digital2012-07-31
TranscriptAllen Chapel

15-16 months -- a working program
most of the members are on relief
or WPA -- not because they want
that status. Can't get regular work.
The condition is not peculiar to
Speak only for his own group -- his
own church.
Deplore the panhandling method.
Annual project to assist
Allen Chapel is suggested.
Congregat[io]n cooperative -- but too
few & too poor.
Annual -- connectional fee -- $200.

A stated quarterly obligation of
$40. -- but no assistance rec'd would
be used for that purpose.
S.S. room without equipment --
no sand[?] tables.
132 on rolls --

p. 1 back

The obligation to the overhead
connection based on this book
Envelope system is intended
to make a self-sustaining congre-
The pastors in former years have
had to be beggars to keep the
church solvent. (Mrs. Booker)

Young Negroes are asking the
church to be a practical aid in
their lives.

Ask for a clearer definition
of our role from ex committee.

p. 2

1. Instruct the interracial committee to prepare
provisional plans for serving
as a budget & disbursement
authority for the G.C.C. in
regard to the Negro churches.
The committee in this case would approve or dis-
approve requests for financial
aid from any colored church which
is willing to cooperate in develop-
ing a forward-looking religious
program and make recommend-
ations to the C. of C.

2. Instruct Rev. McWhorter that
he will be permitted to announce
that he has the endorsement
of the G.C.C. for any money-
raising musical program
which is approved by the
Interracial Committee.

p. 3
Allen Chapel
$255.44 pastor's salary since Sept.
$185.86 raised by trustees for current
Sept. 18.45
Oct. 27.56
Nov 17.64
Dec 22.44
Jan 31.45
Feb 68.32 ($20 fr. G.C.C. included)

Last year under the 8 tribe system
they raised not less than $45. a
month. Some months $65.
(Plan was for 10 tribes.)

Wanted $72 a month for current
expenses & back bills --

Sunday collect[io]n for Pastor's salary.

p. 3 back
Tribe system has fallen off.

Envelope system working fairly
well. About 1/2 use it.
About 25 non-members have
pledged & use the envelope system
--divided 50-50-Pastor &
Trustee maintenance.

p. 4

Envelope systems for pastor's

Tribe system (8) for church
support -- current expenses.

The acute econ. situat[io]n was ad-
mitted at the church conference
to be at the root of the decline
in the contributions thru the tribe

Light bills 10.82 church
10.84 parsonage

p. 5

2nd Baptist

$2500 debt -- Fidelity Savings
monthly obligat[io]n $34. quite regular
but current -- coal, light etc. and
salary of pastor often unpaid in consequence.

About 50% of the members
are effective.

p. 6
Mrs. Booker

Ambitious -- self supporting hcurch
membership financially adequate --
132 members. Refuses to beg.
Members made own pledges.
Hardly 1/5 of membership has a decent
salary. 3/4 pensioners, WPA., reliefers.
Most here are unable to carry their burden.
Scrupulous to turn money over to bd.

Introduced envelope system.
Never makes a personal appeal.

Man needs encouragement -- wife only
gets about 7 or 8 dollars a wk. Refuses
to make direct appeals for white dona-

Tavern, radio, automobile compete
with the N. [Negro] church.
"Those who would can't, those who can

p. 6 back

"He's worried." He's a teacher --
not a preacher. We can know where every
cent goes now. Reports everything.
$40. quarterly accessment -- due the
presiding elder. Used to be
a grade A church financially.
Now it isn't.

Since I've been here -- 1929 on --
this church has been going down.
But this man is trying intelligent-
ly to do a forward-looking thing.

Mrs. B. wants to see Mr.
McW. [McWhorter] underwritten so he
can serve even as a mission-
ary does.

p. 7

Plan -- to abandon the
unpopular tag day --
to supplement the budget of
the Allen Chapel from funds
secured by the C. of C. cooperat-
ing with Allen Chapel in sponsor-
ship of annual musical talent
items on a 60-40 basis.
Each of the member churches
responsible for a share of


p. 8

1. $20

2. Tag days got tiresome -- yielded
well at 1st; now it yields little.

Church -- Allen Chapel has declined
in influence -- it can't

Parsonage $111.11 back taxes, 3 yrs.

Bequest -- took care of new roof $400.
back taxes for two yrs. pd. &
all but $6 on the 3rd yr. is in
the bank -- ready to be paid.

p. 9

3 men 3 women

financially responsible in some

1. Kinds of work ever done in

2. Earnings in 1940 (or
during a typical month if
the year's data isn't known).

3. Adequacy of their housing

4. Attitude toward a low-cost

p. 10

Mrs. Booker -- Need of a com-
munity center for colored youth.

Could we formulate a recom-
Rev. Green is carrying on
an effective Sunday evening
youth group.

Mrs. B--[Booker?] Allen Chapel

Mrs. Chandler 2nd B [Baptist] report

Mr. Wms[Williams?] job analysis

Mrs. Creighton ?

Physical Descriptionhandwritten on 7 x 8.5 inch paper
FilenameNotes on Negro churches.pdf
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