From the Collections of the Amistad Research Center
The American Missionary Association was founded in 1846 in response to the refusal of some of the largest and oldest missionary organizations to adopt abolitionist principles. During the antebellum period, in addition to missions in Africa, Siam, Jamaica, Hawaii, and Egypt, and in Canada among fugitive slaves, the Association supported hundreds of abolitionist pastors of churches in the United States, from New England to California and in the border states of the South, among Native Americans, native whites, European and Chinese immigrants, and Chicanos.
In the first year of the Civil War, the Association began educational work among the Freedmen at Fortress Monroe, establishing and supporting hundreds of schools during the War and Reconstruction period, many of which continued into the third and fourth decades of the twentieth century, and some still existing today, including Hampton Institute, Atlanta University, Fisk University, LeMoyne-Owen College, Dillard University, and Huston Tillotson College.
The annual reports contain comprehensive statistical and narrative reports on these activities. Also, they contain valuable historical documentation on a variety of other subjects, including American churches and abolitionism; social, economic, and political conditions, particularly in the West and South; the history of Congregationalism; Indian policies; and American relations with Africa.
The Annual Reports are a valuable complement to the Archives of the American Missionary Association and The American Missionary and contain information not found in either of these sources.
Number of rolls: 5