In the College Hill area near Cincinnati, there has been a story circulating for years. Some of it is verifiable; some of it not. It is the story of a man named John T. Crawford. Crawford was a Union soldier who spent time in a Confederate prison. Some called Crawford an eccentric; others said he was insane. He lived frugally and was a lifelong bachelor. When he died, he was estimated to be worth what would have been around $2 million by today’s standards. He also willed his house to become a home for elderly African-American men, with preference for those who once had been slaves. It operated until the 1960s. What is uncertain is why Crawford took such an interest in African-American men who had been slaves. The story told around town was that while in prison, Crawford was helped by the slaves in the prison. It was said they helped him escape. Evidently, he never forgot the kindness shown to him.


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About The Author

A third generation preacher, Mike Shannon is Professor of Preaching at Cincinnati Bible Seminary of Cincinnati Christian University. He has served as a preaching minister, church planter, and college professor. His most recent preaching ministry was at the historic First Christian Church of Johnson City, Tennessee. In his nearly two decades at Cincinnati Christian University, Mike has served as both professor and Dean of the Seminary. He has also been an adjunct professor at Milligan College and Northern Kentucky University. Mike is the author or co-author of several books.

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