About Us

Our History

In the year of 1924, Jones chapel was founded in finance by the following citizens of Elyria: J.R. Roller, Sr., Clarisa Ann Roller, Ona Williams, Israel Web, Rosiena Francis, Fred E. Davis, Mary Templeton, Agnes Lewis, E.D. Gholston, and Adrian DeJarnette. The congregation met first in a storefront of a building on Broad Street. About three months later they moved to Pine Street. Under the leadership of Rev. I.S. Webster, they were later moved to Middle Avenue. The church was named for Mrs. Ella Jones who was among its' first members, and was remembered for her contributions and active participation in the church program. The Bishop of the Third Episcopal District of the A.M.E. Church assigned Rev. Webster to the church. Though he was a man with little formal training, he was an ardent Christian. He laid the groundwork for the first African Methodist Episcopal church in Elyria. In 1927, a lot was purchased on 17th Street on this site, the first basement for the church was erected. In 1929, the Rev. A.H. Northern was assigned to Jones Chapel, he served for one year, and during his administration, necessary repairs were made to keep the basement from flooding.

Another lot was purchased on 17th Street and the church began to grow.  In 1947, Rev. A.H. Baxter came from a church in Fremont, Ohio and his long ministry of 10 years brought many changes: a new building for the congregation to worship in, the building was contracted to David Hardy, a black contractor of Elyria. Hardy agreed to use as many members of the church is possible on the job, and At times there were as many as 12 Jones chapel members working with the contractor. The dedication of the new building was made on July 25, 1952. Bishop A.J. Allen, Rev. Baxter and many others from the congregation were on hand to witness this event. After many pastors (Rev. Barnes, Rev. C.H. Hinton, Rev. A. G. Johnson, Rev. C.H. Hinton, Rev. Isaac R. Louden, Rev. Wilbur Lowe, Jr., Rev. William S. Wheatley, Rev. Herbert Evans, Rev. Paul P. Martin, Rev. Ralph T.F. Newell, Rev. James M. Reed, Rev. Dr. Eugene L. Schoolfield, II, Rev. Gary M Hearst, Rev. Kevin E. Parks,  Rev. Dr. Cheviene Jones), and along with our present pastor Rev. Dixie Smith, we are doing our best to continue to grow.