Billy Graham Center
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Records of the American Messianic Fellowship - Collection 546


[Note: What follows is a description of the documents in this collection which are available for use at BGC Archives in Wheaton, Illinois, USA. The actual documents are not, in most cases, available online, only this description of them. Nor are they available for sale or rent.]

Table of Contents

Title Page and Restrictions

Brief Description of This Collection

Historical Background

An Essay on the Contents of the Collection (Scope and Content)

Lists of Artifacts, Audio Tapes and Photographs in This Collection (Location Records)
    Audio Tapes
    Photographs
List of the Contents of Boxes of Paper Records in This Collection (Box List)







Collection 546

[June 23, 2010]

American Messianic Fellowship; 1887-

Records; 1887-1987, n.d.

3 Boxes (DC) Audio tape, photographs (1.08 cubic feet)




Brief Description: Collection includes annual reports, audio tape, correspondence, legal documents, log books, minute books, newsletters, photograph, and prayer books documenting the American Messianic Fellowship (formerly the Chicago Hebrew Mission) and the Hebrew Christian Fellowship (Florida) a subsidiary of the AMF.


Restrictions: Because of their fragile condition, the materials in folders 1-1, 1-2, and 1-3 are closed. Researchers should use Folder 1-4 instead. Copyright to published materials is retained by AMF.






Historical Background


Founded

Founded on November 4, 1887 as the Chicago Committee for Hebrew Christian Work to “undertake Gospel work among the Jews of Chicago.”

Headquarters location

 

November 1887

264 W. 12th Street, Chicago, Illinois

 

May 1888

427 S. Halsted Street, Chicago, Illinois

 

1889-

273 Forquer Street, Chicago, Illinois

 

1891-

44 Henry Street, Chicago, Illinois

Corner of Margaret and Henry Streets near Blue Island Ave., and 14th Street

 

1894-ca. 1919

22 Solon (Margaret St.) Street (as of Sept 1909 address was changed to 1425 Solon Place)

 

ca. 1919-ca 1940s

1311 S. Kedzie Ave., Chicago

 

ca. 1922-ca. 1940s

Mission Home: 1505 S. Sawyer Ave., Chicago, Illinois

 

ca. 1940s-1954

818 Independence Blvd., Chicago, Illinois

 

1954-

7448 N. Damen, Chicago, Illinois

 

ca. 1987-

19550 Burnham Ave., Lynwood, Illinois

Officers

 

 

Presidents

 

1887-1910

 

Rev. Professor H.M. (Hugh McDonald) Scott (chairman 1887-1889)

 

1910-1913

 

Dr. Alexander Patterson

 

1913-1925

 

Dr. Charles Blanchard

 

1926-1935

 

William R. McCarrell

 

1935-1942

 

Dr. Frank Kirby

 

1942-1944

 

Dr. J.A. Sutherland

 

1944-1952

 

Torrey M. Johnson

 

1952-1955

 

Dr. S. Franklin Logsdon

 

1955-1970

 

David N. Salstrom

 

1970-1975

 

William E. Currie

 

1975-1993

 

Dr. Donald K. Wood

 

1994-1997

 

Rev. Galen Banashak

 

1998-2001

 

Dr. Timothy North

 

2002-2004

 

Rev. Galen Banashak

 

2005-2008

 

Doyne Cole

 

2009-

 

Michael Weaver

 

 

 Superintendents

 

1889-1894

 

William E. Blackstone

 

1894

 

Rev. Sprunger

 

1894

 

Rev. Bernhard Angel

 

1895-1896

 

J. W. Marcusson

 

1897-1919

 

Mrs. T. C. (Tryphena Cecila) Rounds

 

1919-1923

 

Rev. Norman Camp

 

1923-1940

 

Rev. Charles P. Meeker

 

1940-1954

 

Milton B. Lindberg

 

1954-1961

 

Rev. Archie A. MacKinney

 

 

General Directors

 

1954-1961

 

Rev. Milton B. Lindberg

 

1962-1970

 

Rev. Archie MacKinney

 

1970-1973

 

Rev. Alex Koval

 

1973- 1989

 

Rev. William E. Currie

 

1990-1994

 

Rev. Wes Taber

 

1995-

Executive Director, Rev. Wes Taber

Significant events in organizational history

 

November 4, 1887

The organizational committee was comprised of Professor H.M. Scott, Chairman, Rev. John H. Barrows, Bishop Charles Edward Cheney, Rev. C.D. Mandeville, Rev. L.M. Heilman, E.P. Rice, Rev. Edward P. Goodwin, Professor D.C. Marquise, Rev. M.W. Stryker, Benjamin Douglass, Professor J. Gustav Princell, B.F. Jacobs, T.W. Harvey, and William E. Blackstone, Secretary and Treasurer.

 

March 11, 1891

Incorporated in the State of Illinois on March 11, 1891 [per Board of Trustee minutes of March 14, 1891, (see page 66 folder 1-12)

 

April 1, 1963

Hebrew Christian Fellowship, Inc., 505 Collins Ave., Miami Beach, Florida, became a subsidiary of AMF

Ministry emphasis

The ministry was begun to provide physical and spiritual assistance to the Jewish people. Later it also educated Christians to the Jewish roots of their faith and fought anti-Semitism. Originally started among Russian Jewish immigrants in Chicago, it helped to establish affiliated missions established in many other cities economically independent but following the doctrine and methods of CHM and a ministry in Palestine, later Israel.

Geographical emphasis

Initially Chicago but later expanded to include other cities in the United States and then around the world.

Alternate names

 

 

1889-1953

The Chicago Hebrew Mission.

 

1953-1993

American Messianic Fellowship

 

1993-2008

AMF International

 

2008-

Life in Messiah International name used but legally still known as AMF International. Merged with Immanuel Ministries International

Other significant information

 

1887-1894

Rev. Bernhard Angel, first missionary, labored in Chicago for seven years and later for over thirty years in New York City

 

1912

First international mission work started in Jassy, Roumania by Rev. John Resnick

 

1920s-

Rev. Hyman Jacobs, worked in Palestine and was supported by CHM. He was the first of a continuing line of missionaries to serve there.

 

1920s

Affiliate missions established in St. Louis and New Orleans (closed during the Great Depression)





[Note: In the Scope & Content section, the notation “folder 2-5" means “Box 2, Folder 5"]


Scope and Content


Series: I. Paper Records

Arrangement: Alphabetical by type of document

Date Range: 1887-1987, n.d.

Volume: 1.05 cubic feet

Boxes: 3

Geographic coverage: United States

Type of documents: Annual reports, correspondence, legal documents, log books, minute books, newsletters, prayer books

Correspondents: Generic letters to supporters of CHM

Subjects: American Messianic Fellowship, Chicago Hebrew Mission, Evangelism, Hebrew Christian Fellowship, missions to Jews,

Notes: The materials in this collection consist of the records of the Chicago Hebrew Mission (later American Messianic Fellowship) and the records of the Hebrew Christian Fellowship, Inc. of Miami Beach, Florida which became a subsidiary of the AMF in 1963. The records of the HCF include log books (folders 1-9 through 1-14), newsletters (folder 2-5), and a prayer book (folder 2-6).


The minute books of the CHM Board of Trustees and Executive Committee meetings give a glimpse into the founding and operation of the mission for sixty years. The books for 1920 through 1935 are missing. The minutes include not only the annual election of officers, trustees, and acceptance of new member but also the oversight of the needs and working of the mission.


Many documents describe the organization and administration of the mission and its loose affiliation with other, mainly Jewish missions in other cities (especially the Hebrew Christian Mission of Miami Beach). However, there is also some information on premillenial beliefs of the mission as they related to its evangelistic work. There are also, mainly in folders 1-8 and 3-3 a little information on the mission’s activities in Palestine and its pro-Zionist stance throughout its history.


Exceptional items: The first annual report of the CHM in Folder 1-1 published in November 1888 gives information on the origin and progress of the work and a report on the ministry of CHM missionary Rev. Bernhard Angel in Chicago. The second annual report in Folder 1-2 includes a copy of the CHM Constitution (adopted December 1889), officers, executive committee members and other members. Folder 1-3 containing the third annual report includes a copy of the of the CHM Charter and Constitution as filed with the State of Illinois in 1891 and the By-Laws. Because of the fragile condition of the reports researchers must use the photocopies in folders 1-4, 1-5, 1-6.


Folder 1-7 contain appraisals for two CHM properties in Chicago at 1505 S. Sawyer Ave. and 1311 S. Kedzie Ave. which were done in 1948. The business offices and Mission Home of the CHM were at 1311 S. Kedzie Ave. and 1505 S. Sawyer Ave. respectively in 1922.


Correspondence in Folder 1-8 consist of twelve generic letters (1922-1926) addressed to those interested or involved in the work of CHM containing announcements of meetings. Also included in the folder are three (1949, 1958-1959) other letters about financial and legal matters.


The minute books (folders 1-15, 1-16, 2-1, 3-2) contain both the records of the Board of Trustees and the Executive Committee. A separate book (folder 2-2) contains only the minutes of the Executive Committee for 1911-1918. Minutes for Executive Committee for 1902-1910 and 1919 are in folder 2-1 along with the Board of Trustee minutes.


The earliest minute book (folder 1-15) of the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee includes information of the first meeting on November 4, 1887 at which the Hebrew Christian Work was organized and committee members were elected. At the Second Annual meeting in December 1889 the constitution of the renamed organization, Chicago Hebrew Mission, was approved and the officers and executive committee were elected (pages 36-44). Names and addresses of the members of the CHM in 1902 are listed on page 5-6 in folder 2-1.


The last minute book (folder 3-2) covers twenty-five years of meetings beginning in 1936. The minutes for the fiftieth annual business meeting (November 4, 1936) were clipped possibly from the CHM monthly publication The Jewish Era magazine and pasted in the minute book. It was noted that Mrs. T.C. Rounds, the only surviving member of the original committee, was now in her 95th year. Over the years she had served as secretary, treasurer, and superintendent pro-tem and was still a member of CHM. The following year at the annual meeting Mrs. Rounds was reelected by the board. In July 1946 the Board of Trustees adopted a policy in regard to branches in other cities (pages 292-293). The policy stated that all branches were to be interdenominational, run by a Board of Councillors and have the oversight of the work, the doctrinal position was to be the Niagara Confession, and the CHM was to be responsible for the finances of the branches and hold title to all properties. The Mission Branch in Milwaukee (page 63) was dedicated on October 16, 1938. This mission had six full time workers employed on a faith basis.


The minutes for the CHM workers’ meeting for 1905-1910 (folder 2-3) document the practical day-by-day ministry of the mission. Some of the information given include reports on classes for boys and girls, mothers’ meetings, adult Bible instruction, distribution of tracts, Bibles, and clothing, visits by CHM workers, and the industrial school. An interesting discussion arose in July 1906 related to the attempted placement of a “little converted Jewess, who is in great need of being removed from her parents, who are willing to have her become educated as [a] missionary.” By the end of August no one was found who could take the girl in so the matter was dropped.


The format of the worker’ meeting minute book for 1919-1926 (folder 2-4) is quite different from the previous one. There are not only minutes for the meetings but also statistical data for the activities of the month. The data includes the number of various meetings conducted and attendance at each, number of conversions, visits, literature distributed and sold, and relief given. Composite statistics for each year and the names of those some of those converted are listed.


Miscellaneous items in folder 3-3 include a tract in English and Hebrew published in 1974, photocopies of the 1891 constitution and by-laws of CHM, proposed amendments to the constitution of AMF, flyers and schedules of special meetings, embossed impression of the CHM seal, “In Memoriam Dr. Jacob Blum” (missionary for the AMF in Israel for twenty years who died in 1966), “Messianic Judaism:” or Judaising Christianity by David Baron (a reprint of an article in the October 1911 issue of The Scattered Nation), AMF Centennial Banquet program, and a booklet 100 Years of Blessing: The Centennial History of the American Messianic Fellowship. The folder also contain brochures describing the work of the mission under the presidency of Charles A. Blanchard.


The miscellaneous folder (3-3) contains a set of mission’s personnel policies from 1946. These outline both the spiritual and vocational expectations of CHM workers of that era, as well as rules governing the mission’s home, which housed the offices and where many of the staff lived.


There are six log books of the Hebrew Christian Fellowship, Inc., in folders 1-9 through 1-14 covering five years (1959-1964). These books contain information on the ministry of HCF including contacts with individuals who visited the mission or attended services. The newsletters of the HCF originally in a loose leaf notebook were removed and placed in folder 2-5. There are two incomplete sets of newsletters of affiliated city missions the Twin Cities Hebrew Christian Messenger (1945-1947) and “The Voice” of the Hebrew Christian Fellowship (1954-1959). There are also a few correspondence and over two dozen letters to prayer partners and friends of HCF. The HCF prayer book in folder 2-6 contains mainly lists of names of those who were prayed for and in some cases the reason for the request.



Series: II. Audio visual materials

Date Range: 1951-1986

Volume: 0.004 cubic feet

Geographic coverage: United States

Type of documents: Audio tape

Subjects: Chicago Hebrew Mission, American Messianic Fellowship

Notes: Oral history of the Chicago Hebrew Mission/American Messianic Fellowship by Mel and Barbara Shelver.


Tape 1 (65 minutes). The tape is divided into twelve chapters with Mel and Barbara speaking alternatively about their thirty-five years (1951-1986) with CHM/AMF. They describe their first days at the mission home where Mel became the office manager and bookkeeper and Barbara was secretary to Superintendent Rev. Milton Lindberg, experiences of communal living with other mission workers, ministering to visitors to the mission, celebrating Jewish holidays, witnessing to Jews outside of the mission, meeting William E. Blackstone’s grandson and great-grandson, and changes in the expectations of those applying to the mission now compared to those who applied years ago.



Provenance


The materials in this collection were given to the Archives of the Billy Graham Center by the American Messianic Fellowship in April 1988, March 1990, March 1992, and November 2002.


Accession: 88-26, 90-30, 92-27, 02-72

June 23, 2010

Wayne D. Weber







LOCATION RECORD

Accession: 92-27

Type of Material: Audio Tapes

The following items are located in the AUDIO TAPE file.


Item# - Reel or cassette, speed, length, number of sides, contents (title of session, participants) according to the program, date.


 #

R/C

speed

length

Sides

Contents

Dates

 T1

C

 

65min

 2

Remembering When: An oral history of Chicago Hebrew Mission/American Messianic Fellowship by Mel and Barbara Shelver

Jan 1991







LOCATION RECORD

Accession: 90-30

Type of material: Photographs

The following items are located in the PHOTO FILE; request by folder title (in bold) at the beginning of each entry below.



AMERICAN MESSIANIC FELLOWSHIP: Photograph of the female staff with four ladies standing about a seated older lady probably Mrs. T.C. (Tryphena Cecilia) Rounds. 1 b&w, ca. 1920s.







BOX LIST

Box

Folder

Item

Dates

 

 

Annual Reports - CHM

1

1R

 

First Report

1888

1

2R

 

Second Report

1889

1

3R

 

Third Report

1891

1

4

 

First Report, photocopy

1888

1

5

 

Second Report, photocopy

1889

1

6

 

Third Report, photocopy

1891

1

7

Appraisals - CHM

1948

1

8

Correspondence - CHM

1922-1959

3

1

Legal Documents - CHM

1943-1957

 

 

Log Books - HCF

1

9

 

 

1959-1960

1

10

 

 

1960-1961

1

11

 

 

1961-1962

1

12

 

 

1962

1

13

 

 

1962-1963

1

14

 

 

1963-1964

 

 

Minute Books - CHM

 

 

 

Board of Trustees & Executive Committee

1

15

 

 

1887-1893

1

16

 

 

1893-1901

2

1

 

 

1902-1920

3

2

 

 

1936-1960, 1963

2

2

 

Executive Committee

1911-1918

2

3

 

Workers’ Meeting

1905-1910

2

4

 

Workers’ Meeting

1919-1926

3

3

Miscellaneous - CHM

1891-1987, n.d.

2

5

Newsletters - HCF

1945-1963, n.d.

2

6

Prayer Book - HCF

1959-1962





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