Central Pennsylvania African American History for Everyone
              An online resource since 1997.


 A teacher in the primary grades, Hygienic School, 1910.A student in the primary grades, Hygienic School, 1910.

the 20th Century

Choir of Emanuel
Church of God in Christ
Main Street, Steelton, PA


The following article was made possible by the Friends of Midland organization, which contributed photographs, information and primary research materials from their archives.  Originally formed to rescue and rehabilitate the historic Midland Cemetery, the Friends of Midland also have an interest in local African American history, including the Hygienic School and Steelton African American churches.  They are very interested in hearing from former students of the Hygienic School, former residents, and anyone interested in Steelton's African American history, and can be contacted at the following address:
Friends of Midland, P. O. Box 7442, Steelton, Pennsylvania 17113-0442.
E-mail:  Friends of Midland  or view the Homepage

The photograph below came to the archives through an online auction, with little explanation of its origin.  Fortunately there is an extensive pencil notation on the reverse side that identifies the place as the "Emmanuel Church of God in Christ on Main Street, Steelton, PA."  Presumably the picture depicts the choral members or choir of that church, which originally existed on the borough's west side.

A local resident, Sheila Barton, provided more details about the present day church, noting "This article is awesome, especially since a good amount of [the people in the picture] are still alive and attending Emanuel under the pastorate of Elder David Screven. We are now located at 16th and Liberty Streets in Harrisburg.  Mary Brown Moody is my mother. Bishop Burton, in his 100's, visits us every fifth Sunday...
-Sheila Barton, Third Generation Emanuelite, born and raised there. (Correspondence to Afrolumens Project, May 14, 2004)

We welcome any additional comments, remembrances or memories about either the church, congregation or persons listed below.  We will expand this article to include information as it is uncovered.

Please click the image for a larger photograph. 

The pencil notation on the reverse side reads:

"Emmanuel Church of God in Christ on Main Street Steelton, PA.
"First Row:  L.H. Butler, Shirley Wilkerson Carter.
"Second Row:  Marie Green, Mary Brown Moody, Elizabeth Sanders Hall, Vecalia Jarius McGrady, Elenore Garnet.
"Third Row:  Hurley Richardson, Janie Robinson Bishop, Suellen White Fielder, Rosalie McNeil Johnson, Bertha Garnet.
"Fourth Row:  Colonel Lyles, Bishop Dewitt Burton, Pastor Edward Brown, Henry Butler.
"Identification by, Vincent House.  My thanks to Vince."

The current address of Emanuel Church of God in Christ is 601 North Sixteenth Street, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, 17103.

Other Steelton Articles:

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This page was updated March 17, 2023.