This is an open letter that was written by Calvin Vinson. Mr. Vinson talks about the runaway slaves and the history of the Underground Railroad.
June 21, 2017
Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church
PO BOX 50
South Point, Ohio
Greeting Friends, Relatives, and Associates;
Please think back to your Great Grandparents and the Institution of Legalized Slavery. The first stop on the Underground-Rail-Road was the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Chruch. The initial run-away slaves came from Ceredo Kenova Va. to Burlington, Ohio. John Campbell accepted them and provided for their safety or eventual departure to the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Chruch. William Davidson and John Campbell conceived the idea of assisting runaway slaves in 1799. So the term Underground Railroad became fashionable and functioning.
The immediate area of Burlington grew to be too hot, so a plan was devised to hide run-a-way slaves in the wilderness. So by 1810 the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church was the safe haven and the escapees grew in number other stations in Blackfork, Big Rock, and Ballia County were developed. Black people should be very proud to know about the honesty required, and the sacrifices made by their parent and fore parents.
How did hundreds of people survive with no education, jobs, housing, or money? Everyone owned a plot of land. Some owned a hut, most of them a log house, and few were able to build a frame house. Farming and hunting kept them alive. But the union they built, and for all and all for one lasted nearly one hundred years. Everyone was their brother’s keeper.
We should have a burning desire to preserve the Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church. I can assure you its presence burned in the soul of your parents and Grand Parents. The church was the most important institution in their life. Farming, school, social life, birth, death, harvest, hunting, and all activities centered about their church.
Black people were not accepted outside their neighborhood. we built our school, church, and housing. We hired and paid our teacher and ministers, We arranged our invented our social activities, we have overcome, and we need to leave our trademark. The Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church is it. We can make our church beautiful for all time.
Enclosed you will find a formula if followed will cause the political establishment to take note. I own forty plus acres in Lawrence Count. Our family has owned large tracts of land since the 1860’s, and none of it was tax exempt. So pony up friends and relations, it is time to shine.
Calvin L. Vinson