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"The Negroes of Xenia, Ohio: A Social Study (1830-1900)." Bulletin of the Bureau of Labor
			
1040         BULLETIN OF THE  BUREAU  OF LABOR.
  This table shows 322 Negro property holders in Xenia.  The num-
ber, however, is greater, since several of the pieces are owned jointly
by two or more persons.  The assessed value of this property  is
$.118,267.  According to the auditor's statement this is supposed to
represent from two-thirds to one-half of the real value of the property,
which is between $177,400 and $236,534.  According to the state-
ment of the owners, this property is worth $149,221. A great deal of
this property was bought through the building and loan associations,
and paid for in installments of from $2 to $4 per week.

                          GROUP LIFE.
  Xenia is the county seat and the largest town of Greene County.
Around it. within less than 12 miles are Cedarville, Jamestown,
Bellbrook, and Yellow Springs, towns having, respectively, 1,189,
1,205, 352, and 1,371 inhabitants, and several other towns.  By means
of good roads, railroads, and electric lines travel between these points
is made easy and frequent, and for this reason the whole county may
be looked at as one social group whose  members constantly move
hither and thither within its limits.  But inside of this larger group
is the more clearly defined group of Xenia which this report attempts
to describe.  And as in Farmville and Sandy Spring, so here the Negro
church is the group or social center.  There are 7 Negro churches in
Xenia, 3 Baptist, 1 African Methodist Episcopal, 1 Methodist Episco-
pal, 1 Christian, and 1 Wesleyan Methodist; or one church to every
284 Negro inhabitants.  The largest of these is Zion Baptist, which is
situated on Main street. It is a beautiful brick edifice, erected at a cost
of $12,500. The next largest, and the church representing the greatest
intelligence, is the St. John's African Methodist Episcopal.  It has a
membership of 223 and owns a parsonage and church valued at $5,000,
both of which are paid for.  The salary of the pastor is $600 per year.
Its Sunday school has an enrollment of about 200 pupils.          These
churches have their fairs and bazaars, concerts and lectures, and their
socials.  The church makes an effort to satisfy in some way all the
legitimate human desires, and thus in the largest and most helpful
sense of the word it is the greatest social organ in Xenia.  But its
chief purpose is to satisfy and educate the religious desires of men
and though it may not always seem evident, this is the great end
which is pursued by the many and varied means these churches use..
All of them, however, have their regular revivals in the fall or winter,
which last from two to six weeks; and in proportion to the fervency
of these, the churches generally reap their harvest of "converts."
These converts are nurtured and " kept within the fold" until the next
spring, when they are baptized. The baptism generally takes place
in one of the streams near the city, and is attended by hundreds, and
often thousands, of people from various parts of the county.  The




			
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OHS Archives/Library Pamphlet Collection

"The Negroes of Xenia, Ohio: A Social Study (1830-1900)." Bulletin of the Bureau of Labor

R.

Issue Number:  48


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