Monday, June 24, 2002

Some Good News

Cemetery could be historic

        The Union Baptist Cemetery, the oldest African-American burial ground in Hamilton County, is among 15 sites nominated by the Ohio Historic Site Preservation Advisory Board to the National Register of Historic Places.

        The cemetery in Price Hill is operated by the Union Baptist Church, downtown. The church was founded in 1831 and is the second-oldest African-American congregation in Cincinnati.

        Mary Gaines, chairman of the board of trustees of the cemetery, said their nomination proposal cited the number of outstanding citizens buried at the cemetery.

        “We are proud of the nomination because this cemetery has a rich black history,” she said. “It was purchased in 1864.”

        Persons buried there include: Peter Fossett, who was chairman of the board when the cemetery was purchased. Mr. Fossett is believed to be a descendant of President Thomas Jefferson.

        The Rev. Leroy Nickens, who pastored the church from 1835 to 1838, is buried there. He was the first African-American to be licensed as a minister in Ohio in 1824.

        George Hayes, who was the only African-American serving in the 75th Ohio General Assembly as a state representative in 1901, is buried there. So is the Rev. Wilbur A. Page, who pastored Union Baptist Church for 66 years (1919-1985).

        Tom Wolf, public education manager for the Ohio Historic Site Preservation Advisory Board, said the next step is that nominations are submitted to the Keeper of the National Register of Historic Places.

        Mr. Wolf said the process will take about 90 days.

        • • •

        The Rotary Club of Cincinnati has given $17,000 in grants to 10 local community service organizations.

        The organizations are: Emanuel Community Center and Our Daily Bread, both in Over-the-Rhine; Ohio Special Olympics, Columbus; Windsor School, Walnut Hills; Kelly's Angels for Children Foundation and the American Music Scholarship Foundation, both downtown; Cincinnati Riding for the Handicapped, Miami Township-Clermont County; Starfire Council of Greater Cincinnati, East Walnut Hills; Junior Fair Board of the Hamilton County Agricultural Society, Carthage; and Senior Independent/Ohio Presbyterian Retirement Services, College Hill.

        Jim Neuhart, president, said the club assists organizations who provide care for the community.

        • • •

        The Mount Carmel Baptist Church, East End, will have a dedication ceremony at 3 p.m., July 7 at its new building, 3101 Eastern Ave., next to its old structure.

        The church has been in the East End for 110 years.

        Allen Howard's “Some Good News” column runs Sunday-Friday. If you have suggestions about outstanding achievements, or people who are uplifting to the Tristate, let him know at 768-8362, at or by fax at 768-8340.


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