(The following historical outline of the development of our North American Regional Department was used by F. L. Peterson in a report at the General Conference worship, and was of such interest that we requested him to share it with our workers in the field.—Editors.)
1871 One of the first Seventh-day Adventists known to work in the South among the four million colored people was Silas Osborn, in Kentucky.
1883 The first Seventh-day Adventist colored church in all the world was organized at Edgefield Junction, Tennessee. The donation on the first Sabbath was 25 cents.
1889 A. Barry, a former slave who accepted the message by reading the Review, raised up a company in Louisville, Kentucky.
1889 C. M. Kinney, the first ordained colored minister in the denomination, was sent to shepherd the Louisville flock. He died August 3, 1951.
1892 Fifty colored Seventh-day Adventists in the South paid a tithe for the year of about $50.
1895 A missionary boat built and manned by James Edson White (a son of Mrs. E. G. White), W. O. Palmer, and F. W. Halliday, became the morning star in the lives of hundreds of colored people along the Mississippi River. The boat was named The Morning Star.
This missionary venture was financed by the sale of the book Gospel Primer, familiar to every Seventh-day Adventist child of those days.
1896 For the training of colored workers, the General Conference established Oakwood Manual Training School near Huntsville, Alabama.
1901 Anna Knight was sent to India as a missionary.
1902 T. H. Branch was sent to Nyasaland-Malamulo in East Africa as a missionary.
1909 The North American Negro Department of the General Conference was organized. There were 900 members.
1918 The first Negro to be elected secretary of the department was W. H. Green.
1931 B. W. Abney was sent as a missionary to South Africa.
1935 The Message Magazine had its beginning.
1936 Riverside Sanitarium and Hospital was opened at Nashville, Tennessee.
1942 The name North American Negro Department changed to North American Colored Department.
1944 Voted to organize colored conferences in unions where the colored constituency is considered by the union conference committee to be sufficiently large, and where the financial income and territory warrant this action.
1954 Name of department changed from North American Colored Department to North American Regional Department.
1958 Dedication of Phillips Memorial Hospital for Negroes in Orlando, Florida.
1958 Oakwood College was accredited by Southern Association of Secondary Schools and Colleges.
Chart available in PDF version of this issue.
Fourteen families and four single young women of the Regional Department have been sent out to overseas service since 1931.
The largest Regional Conference is Allegheny—membership, 8,280.
The highest delivery record in the history of the publishing work was made by the Allegheny colporteurs in 1959. Amount, $300,437.31.