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philosopher, pioneer of Islamic reformist thought, pan-Islamic nationalist as well as a staunch opponent of British penetration in the East, also known as al-Asadaabadi and al-Husayni, Afghani, was born in October/November 1839 in the Iranian village of Asadaabad. However, he endeavored to hide his origins so as to conceal his Shiite identity. It was with this in mind that he assumed the surname al-Afghani (of Afghan origin).

His father, Sayyid Safdar, is said to have been a modest farmer, but a learned Muslim. From the age of five to ten, Afghani was apparently educated at home, focusing on Arabic and the Qurʾan. Thereafter, he was sent to school in Qazvin and later Tehran, where he received the standard Shiite education.

After several years of study in the holy city of Najaf, Afghani moved to India in approximately 1855 where he first encountered British colonialism By the time he reached ...

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David Killingray

Pan‐AfricanMarxist and scholar. Blackman was born in Barbados and won a scholarship to the University of Durham, where he studied theology. He was ordained in the Anglican Church and went to the Gambia as a missionary priest, where he clashed with his bishop over differences of pay for white and black clergy. Having resigned from the Church, Blackman returned to Barbados, but then, in 1938, he settled in London. He joined the leftist Negro Welfare Association, of which he became chairman, and also the League Against Imperialism, being a major speaker on both their platforms. He also became a member of the Executive Committee of the more liberally inclined League of Coloured Peoples, and in 1938–9 editor of its then occasional journal The Keys, writing critically on colonial policy; he also gave evidence to the Royal Commission on the West Indies. In November 1938 ...

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David Killingray

The first African bishop of the Church of England in West Africa. An Egba, he was born in Yorubuland and enslaved as a teenager, but rescued by a British ship and landed at the British settlement of Freetown. He was the first liberated African to be formally educated at the Church Missionary Society (CMS) grammar school, Freetown. Crowther became a Christian and was baptized in 1825, taking the name of an English clergyman. From 1825 to 1827 he was in London studying at the Islington parish school.

On his return to West Africa, Crowther trained at the Fourah Bay Institute, Freetown, and became a schoolteacher. His linguistic abilities and reputation for a devout life led the CMS to suggest he join the British Niger expedition in 1841 as an interpreter The expedition failed to achieve its purpose of planting an agricultural settlement of liberated slaves promoting trade and ...

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David Killingray

Campaigning Christian evangelist, author, journalist, and Pan‐Africanist born in Dominica but educated in the neighbouring West Indian island of Antigua. An influential friend in Antigua was the Revd Henry Mason Joseph, later president of the African Association in London in 1897. In 1870 Edwards stowed away on a ship and over the next few years he travelled the world as a seaman visiting North and South America and Europe He landed in Sunderland and thereafter lived briefly in Edinburgh and Newcastle and worked with a group of black entertainers At some point he was converted to Christianity and as a Primitive Methodist worked as a temperance evangelist in Lancashire and Cheshire He had ambitions to go to Africa as a missionary but gravitated to east London where he ran a weekly Bible class for men and regularly preached in Victoria Park Some referred to ...

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Amar Wahab

Pastor, community activist, and Black leader in Liverpool. Born George Daniel, Daniels Ekarte worked as an errand boy with the Free Church of Scotland in Calabar, Nigeria. Inspired to become a missionary in England, he left as a galley‐hand on board a ship bound for Liverpool in 1915. There, instead of encountering a charitable Christian people, Ekarte met with strong racist attitudes and felt deceived by the missionaries in Nigeria. After a period of disenchantment, he began worshipping with Africans, holding prayer services both in private spaces and in the street. With sponsorship from the Church of Scotland, Pastor Ekarte opened the African Churches Mission in Liverpool in 1931. The Mission was primarily aimed at providing a space of worship and socializing for blacks in Liverpool.

As a community activist and leader, Pastor Ekarte also had a keen interest in the education and welfare ...

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David Killingray

Black BritishWesleyan missionary and traveller in West Africa. Freeman was born in Hampshire, the child of a black father and a white mother. Little is known of his early years, but he was employed as a gardener in Suffolk and became a Christian, joining the Wesleyan Methodists. In 1838 Freeman went as a missionary to the Gold Coast, an area of West Africa where he was to spend most of his life. He built Methodist churches at Cape Coast and Accra, promoted education, and trained local men for the ministry. He established a mission station in Kumase, the Asante capital, and visited towns in southern Nigeria and also the kingdom of Dahomey, where he urged King Gezo to stop the slave trade. On furlough in Britain in 1843 Freeman actively promoted missionary work and also the anti‐slavery cause, both helped by publication of his travel accounts. In 1847 ...

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Jeffrey Green

Jamaicanmissionary and public speaker born the son of an enslaved woman and Alexander Jackson, a member of the Spanish Town Baptist mission. In the aftermath of emancipation (1838), some freed Jamaicans returned to Africa to assist in the anti‐slavery cause, aided by Jamaican Baptists, who proposed the establishment of a mission to West Africa. As well as spreading the Christian gospel, the mission would provide a stimulus for the repatriation of African‐Caribbeans to Africa. Among the Jamaican missionaries were Alexander Fuller and his son Joseph, who were recruited to assist the establishment of a Baptist mission in Fernando Po, an island off the Gulf of Guinea. Joseph arrived in 1844.

Despite early optimism, the Fernando Po mission did not thrive, and the Baptist Missionary Society (BMS) relocated to Cameroon in 1846 Fuller served out a five year apprenticeship with the Cameroon BMS before ...

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David Killingray

Pan‐Africanist and journalist born in Trinidad who became a schoolteacher. During the First World War he arrived in Britain and studied at London University. In 1918John Eldred Taylor asked him to become the editor of a new newspaper in London, the African Telegraph. Hercules also became general secretary of the Society of Peoples of African Origin and associate secretary of the African Progress Union. In this capacity he spoke at a protest meeting at Hyde Park Corner condemning the race riots in Liverpool, also writing to the Colonial Secretary demanding that black people should be protected from white violence. In particular he fiercely condemned in the African Telegraph the assault by hundreds of white soldiers on black soldiers who were patients at the Belmont Hospital in Liverpool. When it was announced that black soldiers would not participate in the victory celebrations in London in July 1919 ...

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David Dabydeen

African preacher who travelled around England and Ireland sermonizing. Jea was born in Old Callabar, Africa, and at the age of 2½ was taken, along with his family, to North America, where they became the slaves of Oliver and Angelika Triebuen. They were ill‐treated and not properly clothed and fed. Working hours were long and intense, as Jea records in his narrative The Life, History, and Unparalleled Sufferings of John Jea, the African Preacher (1815).

The text captures his life as a slave his rebellion against Christian hypocrisy the finding of his faith his travels and the significance of his sermonizing Laden with quotations from the Bible it is itself a piece of Jea s preaching often questioning the virtues and beliefs of his readers Following his discovery of Christianity at the age of 15 when as he writes the Lord was pleased to remove gross darkness superstition ...

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Jeffrey Green

American missionary, author, and evangelist. He had been a house slave in Virginia, but reached England in 1876, where he and his brother‐in‐law studied at Spurgeon's College. He became a Baptist missionary in Cameroon in 1878–9, but ill health forced him out. He then promoted self‐help ideas among American Blacks, travelling widely in the United States. He gathered sufficient support in Britain and Ireland to send Dr T. E. S. Scholes and a carpenter named Ricketts (both from Jamaica) to the Congo. In Britain he associated with the evangelist Henry Gratton Guinness, the Anti‐Slavery Society, the Pan‐Africanist Henry Sylvester Williams, and the choirmaster Frederick Jeremiah Loudin. In 1900 Johnson became a British citizen. He now lived in Bournemouth, where he was a well‐respected individual who would talk of American slavery, tropical Africa (where his first wife, Henrietta, had died), and the Christian message.

First published ...

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Nazneen Ahmed

First black West Indian ordained into the Church of England. Educated at Queen's College school in Demerara, British Guiana (now Guyana), Mackenzie travelled to England in 1852 to attend St Augustine s Missionary College Canterbury where he gained the Hebrew Prize He was recommended for the priesthood by the ...

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James Graham

Adopted name of Malcolm Little, also known by his Muslim name, el‐Hajj Malik el‐Shabazz (1925–1965), influential black nationalist. Raised in a Baptist family but bereaved of both parents at an early age, Malcolm's troubled childhood and adolescence is vividly retold in the posthumous best‐selling Autobiography (1965). It was during his imprisonment for burglary (1946–52) that Malcolm discovered the Islamic faith which was to become the driving force in his life. For the next eleven years he dedicated himself to the cause of race pride and black nationalism, spreading the teachings of Elijah Muhammad and the influence of his organization, the Black Muslim sect (later to become the Nation of Islam). In 1964 Malcolm left the organization and formed his own group the Organization of Afro American Unity It was in the following years of antipathy between Malcolm and his former leader and followers ...

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David Killingray

African‐Americanpreacher born a free man in the colony of New York. He had an itinerant childhood, during which he worked with a carpenter and learned to play the French horn and violin. He was converted to Christianity at one of George Whitefield's services in 1769 or 1770, and he then spent two years evangelizing, including a period of captivity, among Native American peoples. Sometime during 1775–6 he was impressed into the Royal Navy. He took part in the siege of Charleston in 1780, saw action in British waters, was wounded, and then was discharged in Plymouth in 1782. He went to London, and preached in Spa Fields chapel, which belonged to the Countess of Huntingdon's Connection, into which body he was ordained at Bath in May 1785. At about that time he told his story to William Aldridge a Methodist minister and friend of ...

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Amon Saba Sakaana

Black doctor and activist. Harold Moody was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1882 and arrived in London in 1904 to study medicine. His mother, a dark woman, was aware of the liability of black skin in colonial Jamaica for she advised her son to make friends with those fairer than himself. Moody's father worked on the Panama Canal and returned with enough money to open a pharmacy. Moody was sent to a prestigious school in Kingston run by Sir William Morrison, and was then transferred to Woolmer's Free School until 1899. His scholarship was sound, and upon graduation he opened his own school, where he taught for some time. From his very early beginnings Moody was a devout Christian, becoming secretary of the Christian Endeavour Society at the age of 19. He also was a preacher at two churches in Kingston.

As early as 1912 Moody was ...

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David Killingray

African‐Americanseaman, evangelist, and missionary born in the United States, the child of freed slaves. As a seaman he travelled over a large part of the world, living what he later described as the dissolute life of a prodigal. He arrived in Edinburgh sometime in the early 1870s. While living in Leith, in 1873, he entered a mission hall and was converted to Christianity. From then on he became an evangelist, first in Leith and then as an itinerant preacher with a travelling tent mission in the Scottish midlands.

Newby wanted to go to Africa as a missionary, and so he trained at the Harley Institute in east London from 1874 to 1876. He sailed for West Africa in July 1876 to work for the Church Missionary Society in the Niger delta region As part of his evangelistic work he went with an expedition into ...

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John Gilmore

Clergyman of the Church of England who led what he later considered to be a reprobate youth and worked in the slave trade. It was while on a slaving voyage (1748–9) that he experienced a religious conversion. Nevertheless, he continued to work in the slave trade, and made three more voyages before retiring from the sea in 1754. He became widely known as an evangelical Christian, and was eventually ordained as a clergyman of the Church of England in 1764, serving first in the parish of Olney in Buckinghamshire, and later, from 1780 until his death, at St Mary Woolnoth in London.

At Olney, Newton became a close friend of the poet William Cowper, and together they wrote the collection known as the Olney Hymns. Newton's own contributions include the words to some of the best known hymns in the English language ...

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John Gilmore

Clergyman of the Church of England and campaigner against the slave trade. Peckard was educated at the University of Oxford and held various positions in the Church before becoming Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge, in 1781. He retained this office until his death, and was also Dean of Peterborough from 1792.

In 1785, as Vice‐Chancellor of the University of Cambridge, Peckard set the subject for a university Latin essay competition: Anne liceat invitos in servitutem dare? [‘Is it lawful to make men slaves against their will?’] The prize was won by Thomas Clarkson, who entered the competition in search of academic honours but discovered his life's work in the process.

Peckard was himself an eloquent critic of the slave trade. In a 1788 sermon before the University of Cambridge he stated that there was no validity in any of the arguments usually brought forward ...

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David Killingray

African‐Americanabolitionist, teacher, Christian preacher, temperance worker, and peace activist. Pennington was born into slavery in Maryland, where he worked as a blacksmith. He escaped, educated himself at night school, and became a teacher. Following a conversion experience, he served as a pastor of several black Congregational churches. Much of his life was devoted to self‐improvement and the cause of abolition and black civil rights. As a prominent African‐American spokesman he was a delegate to the second World Anti‐Slavery Convention, and also the Peace Congress, both held in London in 1843 Pennington believed that US slavery and racialism could best be challenged by mobilizing international opinion To this end he preached and spoke all over Britain He frequently compared his treatment in Britain to that which he received in America where If I meet my white brother minister in the street he blushes to ...

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John Gilmore

Clergyman of the Church of England and campaigner against the slave trade. Porteus was an acquaintance of James Ramsay, whom he encouraged to publish his influential Essay on the Treatment and Conversion of African Slaves in the British Sugar Colonies (1784).

As Bishop of Chester (1776–87), Porteus preached a sermon in 1783 before the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in which he urged them to take steps to ensure the Christianization of the slaves the Society owned on its plantations in Barbados, a plea that fell on deaf ears. As Bishop of London from 1787 until his death Porteus took an active interest in the Anglican Church in the British West Indian colonies at that date considered part of his diocese but difficulties of communication and the fact that the Bishop possessed little in the way of legal powers over his ...

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John Gilmore

Also known as Kweku (1741–1816), the first African clergyman of the Church of England. Quaque was a Fante, born at Cape Coast in what is now Ghana. He was the only survivor of three Fante boys sent to England in 1754 by a missionary of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel (SPG) in order that they might be educated. Baptized as Philip in 1759, he was ordained in 1765, the first African to become a priest of the Church of England.

He returned to Cape Coast in 1766, and spent most of the rest of his life there, combining the position of chaplain at Cape Coast Castle, a trading fort maintained by the African Company (successor to the Royal African Company who paid him a salary for his work in this capacity with that of a missionary employed by the SPG Many ...