Sometimes you read things that really disappoint you and the more I learn about the life and legacy of Reverend R.H. Boyd the more tragic the theft of this statue becomes. To think that someone would steal a piece of African-American history to possibly sell as scrap metal is disheartening. I truly hope that the perpetrators are found and that we can find out if there were any other motives outside of money.
The things that I respect the most about R.H. Boyd is that he was self-educated and even used his own money to hire a teacher to teach him. He founded the National Negro Doll Company and according to many texts he is believed to have pioneered the marketing of black dolls for black children for the purpose of black pride. Despite not learning the alphabet until the age of 22, he wrote over fourteen books and pamphlets. He was the founder and first president of the One-Cent Savings and Trust Company Bank. A financial institution created to serve the needs of African-Americans because a lot of the other banks at the time looked down on African-Americans because of their small deposits and account balances. He was a civil rights activist who fought against the Jim Crow laws of his era. Reverend R.H. Boyd founded the National Baptist Publishing Board with a goal of providing black Baptists with religious materials written by other black Baptists. This is only a fraction of the many things that Rev. R.H. Boyd was able to accomplish in his lifetime.
Learn more about the theft of this statue by reading The Tennessean’s article via the link below.