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Henry McNeal Turner, 1834-1915

Henry McNeal Turner (1834-1915) was an author, civil rights activist, and a bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church. Born near Abbeville, S. C., he was licensed to preach in 1853. He was the first black man to hold the position of Chaplain in the U.S. Army. Turner was active in Georgia state politics, and he served briefly in the Georgia State Legislature. He became the twelfth A.M.E. Bishop in 1880. For twelve years he served as chancellor of Morris Brown College (now Morris Brown University) in Atlanta.

In the years following the Civil War, Turner grew increasingly disillusioned by the racial discrimination blacks encountered in the United States. Later in life, he was an advocate of African colonization, believing that emigration represented black Americans' best hope for equality.

Courtney Vien

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