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Collins FDC Catalog

Richard Allen

M5501 / Scott 5056

Black Heritage

Richard Allen - Founder of African Methodist Episcopal Church

Cover Announcement 

lt 1794 Reverend Allen founded the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME) in Philadelphia. It was

the first independent Black denomination in the United States. Richard Allen was born into a family of slaves on February 14, 1760. Delaware farmer Stokeley Sturgis, whom Allen described as "a very tender, humane man," encouraged Richard to attend Methodist religious classes where he learned to read, write, and preach.

At age 23 Allen purchased his freedom and earned his way by making shoes, chopping wood, and driving a wagon during the Revolutionary War. He also made time to preach the Gospel. In 1786 he was offered the chance to lead Black parishioners in Bible study at St. George's Methodist Episcopal Church. As the congregation grew, restrictions were placed on the Black members as to where they were allowed to sit and pray. Richard left the church and established his own congregation in Philadelphia.

My hand painted cachet features Allen and his wife Sarah in front of lndependence Hall. The couple, in addition to leading the church, established a stop on the Underground Railroad which aided escaping slaves seeking freedom in the North.

During the War of 1812, he helped with the defense planning for the city of Philadelphia. Richard died on March 26, 1831, and both he and his beloved Sarah are buried beneath the church he founded. Now ready is minister, educator, writer, and patriot - Richard Allen. Collins #L5501 at $15.00.

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