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Mon, 08.13.1810

Samuel H. Davis, Minister, and Educator, born

Samuel H. Davis

*Samuel H. Davis was born on this date in 1810. He was a Black minister, teacher, and community leader.

Davis was born in Temple Mills, Maine. Samuel, Sr., was born into slavery in 1782 in Lunenburg, New York, near the Hudson River, later known as Athens, in Greene County, NY. (4) His father's father was a Dutchman surnamed McCarty--a descendant of the Netherlands Dutch. 

Davis studied at Oberlin College in Ohio. Afterward, he spent time in Windsor, Canada, before returning to Buffalo. Davis worked as a brick mason. He taught at a Buffalo school for black children.  He became the Principal Teacher of the Vine Street African School in 1842, close to Michigan Street. He also opened his private school for black students in 1844.

Davis' school was direct across the street in the basement of the Vine Street African Methodist Episcopal Church. Davis was a fifth pastor at the Michigan Street Baptist Church and built much of it himself. After serving as pastor for several years, he moved to Detroit to work at the Second Baptist Church.

Eventually, he was offered a position as a teacher for the Dawn Settlement, located near Dresden, Ontario, a haven for freedom seekers escaping slavery. He remained in Ontario for the rest of his life, serving his churches in various compacity over the years. He died in 1907 at the age of ninety. In 2011, a plaque was unveiled at the church commemorating its history and Samuel H. Davis. Attendees included his descendants.

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