Black Baptists formed the Baptist Missionary and Educational Convention of Texas by 1874. As was typical of Baptist state organizations, the BME Convention promoted missionary and educational activity in the state. Because of the poverty of black Texans the BME depended for many years on assistance from the American Baptist Home Mission Society of New York to support its missionaries and conduct institutes to train its preachers. The ABHMS owned and operated Bishop College in Marshall (later Dallas), which it established to train black ministers. The BME Convention supported schools of its own, Hearne Academy, Houston College, and Guadalupe College. By 1890 the convention represented more than 110,000 black Baptists. In the 1890s a plan put forth by the ABHMS to consolidate black Baptist schools divided the BME Convention. The plan called for making Bishop College the flagship school for educating black Baptists in Texas and subordinating Hearne Academy and Guadalupe College to it. The proposal drew strong objections from several ministers, who argued that the plan would lead to the demise of Guadalupe College. They resented the idea that a Black-administered college was being sacrificed to the White-operated ABHMS school. The BME Convention accepted the plan in 1892, and in 1893 the dissident ministers organized the General Baptist Convention. Later disputes further divided the BME Convention. In 1929 dissatisfaction over financial affairs led to the founding of the Texas Baptist Convention. In 1946 the Trinity Baptist State Convention was organized, and in 1981 the Central Baptist Convention was established.
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Alwyn Barr, Black Texans: A History of Negroes in Texas, 1528–1971 (Austin: Jenkins, 1973). J. M. Carroll, A History of Texas Baptists (Dallas: Baptist Standard Publishing Co., 1923). Thomas Jesse Jones, ed., Negro Education: A Study of the Private and Higher Schools for Colored People in the United States, 2 vols., Department of the Interior, Bureau of Education, Bulletin, 1916, No. 39 (New York: Negro Universities Press, 1916). William Edward Montgomery, Negro Churches in the South, 1865–1915 (Ph.D. dissertation, University of Texas at Austin, 1975).
The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.
William E. Montgomery,
“Baptist Missionary and Educational Convention of Texas,”
Handbook of Texas Online,
accessed May 19, 2022,
Published by the Texas State Historical Association.
Original Publication Date:
November 1, 1994
Most Recent Revision Date:
September 30, 2020
This entry belongs to the following Handbook Special Projects: