Charles M. Jones

Charles M. Jones

Place of birth: 
Nashville, TN
Date of birth: 
Place of death: 
Chapel Hill, NC
Date of death: 

The Reverend Charles "Charlie" Miles Jones served as pastor of the University Presbyterian Church from 1941 to 1953. He was beloved by many, but opposed by others for his liberal social gospel views and his activity in the Civil Rights movement. Following a period of bitter conflict during the Presbytery’s "investigation" of Rev. Jones, a number of the members of the congregation left with him to establish the non-denominational Community Church of Chapel Hill.

He married Mary Dorcas McKinney on November 21, 1932, in  Richmond, Virginia.

Jones was involved in the protection of several members of the Freedom Riders when they were attacked at/near the Chapel Hill bus station in April 1947: "After [the Freedom Riders'] bond was placed, Reverend Charles Jones, a local white Presbyterian minister, speedily drove the men to his home. They were pursued by two cabs filled with taxi men. As the interracial group reached the front porch of the Jones home, the two cabs pulled up at the curb. Men jumped out, two of them with sticks for weapons; others picked up sizable rocks. They started toward the house, but were called back by o­ne of their number. In a few moments the phone rang, and an anonymous voice said to Jones, 'Get those damn ni**ers out of town or we'll burn your house down. We'll be around to see that they go.'" (Excerpted from a 1947 report on the incident by Bayard Rustin and George Houser We Challenged Jim Crow.)

For Jones' 1956 debate about segregation with W. C. George, read

Jones died in Chapel Hill on April 6, 1993, and is buried in the Old Chapel Hill Cemetery.


Jones's WWII draft card


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