From NKAA, Notable Kentucky African Americans Database (main entry)

Wilson, Jesse Francis

(born: 1870  -  died: 1937) 

Reverend J. Francis Wilson, born in Harrodsburg, KY, was an active member of the African American Baptist in Kentucky, and the Kentucky Negro Educational Association. He served as the state organizer for the Kentucky (colored) Baptist Young People's Union (BYPU) for 30 years and organized BYPU chapters around the state [sources: Hamilton Journal---The Daily News, 11/04/1937, p.12, columns 6-7; and The American Baptist Year-Book, 1919, p.79]. He traveled to other states to share news about the Kentucky BYPU model.

The BYPU was not unique to Kentucky or the colored Baptist; BYPU was started by the Baptist Church in 1891 according to the History of the Baptist Young People's Union of America by J. W. Conley. The BYPU for the Kentucky colored Baptist was organized in Versailles, KY in 1901 according to the Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky edited by Rev. C. H. Parrish, p.85. Rev. J. Francis Wilson had been a member of the Baptist Church long before the BYPU was organized; he became an ordained minister in August of 1897 [source: Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky edited by Rev. C. H. Parrish, pp.239-240]. He was first a pastor in Flemingsburg and Falmouth, both in Kentucky, and he resigned from both churches in order to establish a church in Cape Colony, Africa. 

Rev. Wilson was recognized as one of the early African American missionaries in the Cape Colony of South Africa (British) [source: The Paducah Evening Sun, 05/24/1907, p.5, column 2]. He returned to the United States after two years, bringing three African children with him. The children were enrolled in State University [Simmons College, KY]. Rev. Wilson returned to preaching and he was editor of the Lexington Standard newspaper for 5 years. 

In 1904, Rev. Wilson was located in Richmond, KY, where he was District Missionary of the Consolidated Association, a position he held for 7 years [source: American Baptist (newspaper), 12/02/1904, p.2, column 5; and Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky edited by Rev. C. H. Parrish, pp.239-240]. He was also commissioned as the State Missionary of Sunday Schools. In 1914, Rev. Wilson was the first pastor of the Loving Springs Baptist Church in Glasgow, (Barren County), KY [source: The Jubilee History and Biographical Sketches of Liberty Association by Times Publishing Company of Smiths Grove, KY, 1916]. Rev. Wilson also served as an agent for the Kentucky Home Society for Colored Children in Louisville, KY [source: Kentucky Directory for the use of Courts, State, and County Officials and General Assembly of the State of Kentucky, 1922, p.162].

Rev. Wilson last lived in Maceo, KY and he served as chairman of the KNEA Necrology Committee from 1934 until his death in 1937 [sources: Kentucky Negro Educational Association Journal, v.5, no.1, October-November, 1934, pp.14-15; up to v.9, no.1, January-February 1938, p.36]. The Necrology Committee recognized African American educators in Kentucky who had died. 

Rev. J. Francis Wilson died November 1, 1937 [source: Kentucky Certificate of Death, Primary Registration District No.4943]. The name on his death certificate is "Reverend Francis Wilson." His funeral service was held in Louisville and he was buried in Harrodsburg, KY [source: Hamilton Journal---The Daily News, 11/04/1937, p.12, columns 6-7]. Rev. J. Francis Wilson was born October 21, 1870 to Rev. Joseph Wilson and Didamy Francis Wilson. He was the husband of Dollye Woodfork Wilson.


Kentucky County & Region

Read about Mercer County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Woodford County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Fleming County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Pendleton County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Madison County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Barren County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Jefferson County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Daviess County, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

Kentucky Place (Town or City)

Read about Harrodsburg, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Versailles, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Flemingsburg, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Falmouth, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Richmond, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Glasgow, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Louisville, Kentucky in Wikipedia.
Read about Maceo, Kentucky in Wikipedia.

References

Cited in this Entry

NKAA Entry: Kentucky Negro Educational Association (KNEA)
NKAA Entry: Simmons College (Louisville, KY)
NKAA Entry: Kentucky Home Society for Colored Children (Louisville, KY)
NKAA Source: Hamilton daily news journal (newspaper)
NKAA Source: American Baptist year-book (annual)
NKAA Source: History of the Baptist Young People's Union of America
NKAA Source: Golden Jubilee of the General Association of Colored Baptists in Kentucky: the story of 50 years' work from 1865-1915 including many photos and sketches, compiled from unpublished manuscripts and other sources
NKAA Source: The Paducah evening sun (newspaper)
NKAA Source: The Lexington standard (newspaper)
NKAA Source: American Baptist (newspaper)
NKAA Source: The Jubliee history and biographical sketches of the Liberty Association
NKAA Source: Kentucky directory for the use of courts, state, and county officials and general assembly of the state of Kentucky (biennial)
NKAA Source: Kentucky Negro Educational Association journal (periodical)

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Cite This NKAA Entry:

“Wilson, Jesse Francis,” Notable Kentucky African Americans Database, accessed November 21, 2017, http://nkaa.uky.edu/nkaa/items/show/3105.

Last modified: 2017-10-19 15:10:35