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Varick, James  

Sandy Dwayne Martin

Methodist leader, clergyman, and race advocate, was born near Newburgh in Orange County, New York, the son of Richard Varick. The name of his mother, who was a slave, is unknown. The family later relocated to New York City. With few educational opportunities for African American children growing up in New York City at the time, Varick by some means acquired very solid learning. Around 1790Varick married Aurelia Jones they had three girls and four boys While he worked as a shoemaker and tobacco cutter and conducted school in his home and church the ministry was clearly his first love Having embraced Christianity in the historic John Street Methodist Church Varick served as an exhorter and later received a preacher s license Racial proscription in the Methodist Episcopal Church during the latter part of the 1700s and early 1800s prevented Varick ordained a deacon ...


Williams, Peter, Sr.  

Kyle T. Bulthuis

tobacconist, sexton of John Street Methodist Church, and founding trustee of the African or Zion Chapel (later named “Mother Zion,” the first African Methodist Episcopal Zion, or AMEZ, church in the United States), was born on Beekman Street in New York City, the son of the African slaves George and Diana. At the time of his birth as many as one in five New York City residents were slaves, a percentage greater than any other British colonial area north of the Chesapeake. Two events in Peter Williams's early adulthood dramatically shaped his future. At some undetermined time, his owners sold him to James Aymar in New York City From Aymar Williams learned the tobacconist trade providing him skills that would one day make him one of the wealthiest blacks in the city Also as a young man Williams attended Methodist meetings and he converted to Methodism ...