A preacher and a diplomat
1834 – A BAPTIST MISSIONARY PUBLISHES THE FIRST NEWSPAPER IN THE INDIAN LANGUAGE – On February 11, 1834, Isaac McCoy left home for Washington, D.C., to find that the Secretary of War had submitted his plan for the organization of Indian affairs. McCoy was born in Pennsylvania on June 13, 1784, but six years later his family moved to KY where he received Christ, was baptized, and united with the Buck Creek BC. He married in 1803, and one year later they moved to Indiana where he was licensed to preach the gospel. He was later ordained by the Maria Creek BC and served as pastor. The church grew as he, “with the Bible in one hand and rifle in the other, went everywhere preaching, ‘the Lord working with him.’” In 1817 the McCoy’s were appointed missionaries to the Indians of Indiana and Illinois. He founded a mission just west of what is now Niles, Michigan and named it “Carey” for the great missionary. He rode hundreds of miles on horseback through the wilderness. Five of his six children died while he was away from home but no sacrifice was too great. He also made several trips to the Nation’s Capital to present the needs of the Indians to the Congress. McCoy composed hymns which were used by the Indians in their worship of the true God. He secured a printing press, and on March 1, 1835, he printed in the Shawnee tongue the first newspaper ever published in an Indian language. He preached the first sermon in Chicago or near where it is located. In 1842 he was appointed the Secretary of the American Indian Association of the Triennial Baptist Convention. At age 63, returning from preaching, he was caught in a rainstorm and fell ill, and in a few days, on June 21 1846 he went home to be with the Lord. On his tombstone are these words, “For nearly thirty years his entire time and energies were devoted to the civil and religious improvement of the aborigines of this country.”
Dr. Greg J. Dixon, from: This Day in Baptist History Vol. I: Cummins Thompson /, pp. 57.
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