Oct. 12 fundraiser helps in efforts to restore African-American church built in 1919 after riot

Great fundraiser to restore Carswell Grove Baptist Church on Oct. 12 in rural East Georgia. The crowd in the old church, built in 1919 on the wreckage of the previous one destroyed by a white mob, was a fascinating mix: black and white, young and old, even some members of the local Sons of Confederate Veterans who have volunteered to help repair the church. Too bad I can’t post audio files here because the musicians, a quartet and accompanist with an electric guitar, were incredible. The church’s historic foundation sold a bunch of copies of Red Summer and received many donations. They have a long way to go, but they are on their way. The last time I saw the church, several years ago, I honestly thought it would soon be demolished or collapse. Now there is hope. The group also is planning to erect historical markers on the property.

Carswell Grove Baptist Church in Jenkins Co., Ga., site of a 1919 race riot at the beginning of the Red Summer.
Carswell Grove Baptist Church in Jenkins Co., Ga., site of a 1919 race riot at the beginning of the Red Summer.
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