“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Farmville in Prince Edward County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Beulah AME Church

Farmville, Virginia


—Prince Edward County —

Beulah AME Church CRIEHT Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, May 29, 2010
1. Beulah AME Church CRIEHT Marker
Inscription. Beulah African Methodist Episcopal (AME) Church was founded in 1868. Originally, it was known as The Colored Methodist Church of Farmville. The original wooden-framed building was destroyed, by fire in 1898. The cornerstone on the present building was laid in 1901.

A protest against segregated seating and restricted participation in worship at St. Johns Episcopal Church in Philadelphia was the spark that ultimately gave rise to the AME Church. Richard Allen, a Philadelphia-born slave, and 42 followers marched out of St. Johns in November 1796 to begin creating a church of their own. Richard Allen founded the AME Church in 1816 and became its first bishop.

Beulah AME Church has a long history of struggle for civil rights. Rev. J.W. Beckett, the church’s fourth pastor, led black students in demonstrations in the 1890s for the hiring of black teachers in the public schools. The demonstrations called attention to the fact that black teachers were graduating from other black schools and should be given the opportunity to teach their own people. As a result of these efforts, black teachers were hired in the county’s public school system. In 1896, also under Rev. Beckett’s tenure, the parsonage, which stands today alongside the church was built.

Rev. R.W. Barker, who pastored this parish for nine years,
(Top) Beulah AME Church, c.1916 (Bottom) Rev. Douglas, 1963. image. Click for full size.
2. (Top) Beulah AME Church, c.1916 (Bottom) Rev. Douglas, 1963.
was instrumental in establishing the first NAACP Chapter in Prince Edward County, along with Rev. L. Francis Griffin, Pastor of First Baptist Church.

Rev. A. I. Dunlap and Rev. Goodwin Douglas, both of Beulah AME Church, worked diligently with the community from 1959 to 1964 when the county public schools were closed to avoid integration. During this period, Rev. Douglas was arrested for organizing and participating in youth demonstrations. Rev. Dunlap, who had been associated with Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. in Atlanta, GE, persuaded Bishop Frank Madison Reid to allow the African-American Robert R. Moton High School Class of 1960 to complete their senior year at KittrelI College in North Carolina, while the county’s schools were closed.
Erected by Civil Rights in Education Heritage Trail®. (Marker Number 27.)
Marker series. This marker is included in the Civil Rights in Education Heritage Trail marker series.
Location. 37° 18.064′ N, 78° 23.603′ W. Marker is in Farmville, Virginia, in Prince Edward County. Marker is at the intersection of South Main Street (U.S. 15) and 4th Street, on the right when traveling south on South Main Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 115 South Main Street, Farmville VA 23901, United States of America.
Other nearby markers.
Richard Allen image. Click for full size.
3. Richard Allen
At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Main Street - Mayor J. David Crute - EACO Theatre (within shouting distance of this marker); First Baptist Church (within shouting distance of this marker); Dr. William W. H. Thackston (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Confederate Veterans Monument (about 600 feet away); Four Sororities Founded (about 700 feet away); Farmville Female Seminary Association (approx. 0.2 miles away); Longwood University (was approx. 0.2 miles away but has been reported missing. ); Site of the Randolph House (approx. 0.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Farmville.
More about this marker. On the left are two photos with the captions:
"(Top Left) The Beulah AME Church, c.1916."
"(Bottom Left) Rev. Goodwin Douglas, a pastor of the Beulah AME Church, marches in protest with students in 1963 during the period of the public schools closings in Prince Edward County."
On the right is a drawing with the caption, "(Above) Richard Allen founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church in 1816 and became it first bishop."

Rev. Douglas photo copyright Richmond Times Dispatch - used by permission.
Also see . . .
1. Civil Rights in Education Heritage Trail. Virginia's
Beulah AME Church image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, May 29, 2010
4. Beulah AME Church
Retreat (Submitted on May 31, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.) 

2. Farmville Beulah African Methodist Episcopal Church. (Submitted on May 31, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.)
Categories. African AmericansChurches & ReligionCivil RightsEducation
Civil Rights in Education Heritage Trail® Map image. Click for full size.
5. Civil Rights in Education Heritage Trail® Map
Appomattox County
1. Winonah Camp/Mozella Price Home
2. Carver-Price School
3. Education in 1800's Rural Virginia

Buckingham County
4. One-Room Schoolhouse
5. Carter G. Woodson Birthplace

Cumberland County
6. Hamilton High School
7. Rosenwald School at Cartersville
8. Jackson Davis

Amelia County
9. Russell Grove Presbyterian Church and School
10. Mrs. Samantha Jane Neil

Chesterfield County
11. Virginia State University

12. Earliest Known Public High School for African Americans in Virginia
13. McKenney Library
14. The Peabody-Williams School

Dinwiddie County
15. Southside Virginia Training Center
16. Rocky Branch School
17. Early Education in Dinwiddie County

Nottoway County
18. Blackstone Female Institute
19. Mt. Nebo Church
20. Ingleside Training Institute

Lunenburg County
21. The People's Community Center
22. St. Matthew's Lutheran Church Christian Day School

Prince Edward County
23. Prince Edward County Public Schools
24. R. R. Moton High School
25. Farmville Female Seminary Association
26. First Baptist Church
27. Beulah AME Church
28. Hampden-Sydney College

Charlotte County
29. Southside Virginia Community College - John H. Daniel Campus
30. Charlotte County Library
31. Salem School

Halifax County
32. Meadville Community Center
33. Mary M. Bethune High School
34. Washington-Coleman Elementary School
35. Mizpah Church

Mecklenburg County
36. Thyne Institute
37. Boydton Academic and Bible Institute

Brunswick County
38. Southside Virginia Community College - Christanna Campus
39. Saint Paul's College
40. Hospital and School of the Good Shepherd
41. Fort Christanna
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 31, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,130 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on May 31, 2010, by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia.
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