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James A. Handy, 1826-1911

James A. Handy was born in Maryland on December 22, 1826. In his youth, Handy received little formal education. When Handy was 18 years old, he joined the Moral Improvement Society, and in 1853, he joined the African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church in Baltimore, Maryland. In 1855, Handy was appointed a trustee of the church. Five years later, in 1860, Handy was ordained to the ministry, and he held pastorates in Maryland, Washington, D. C., North Carolina, Virginia, and Louisiana. Handy became the 22nd Bishop of the A.M.E. Church in 1892.

Karen Ruffle

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