Church of God (Guthrie, OK)

The Church of God, Guthrie, Oklahoma

The Church of God, Guthrie, OK, was founded as a renewal movement to overcome perceived losses in distinctive racial integration and simplicity of dress. They were on record as non-resistant to going to war.

William C. Kostlevy, Historical Dictionary of the Holiness Movement, 2001, Scarecrow, p. 54.

Sons of Ex-slave were Religious Objectors to War

Ex-slave, George Winn and wife Carrie were founding leaders in the Church of God (Guthrie, OK) congregation. They had two sons who were religious objectors to WWI. The older son, Stafford Sylas Winn, was held in Ft. Leavenworth, KS, military detention, for religious objection to war. The younger brother, Edward Winn, asked for Religious Objection as a member of the Church of God.

Edward Winn, COG Guthrie, WWI Draft Registration

Edward Winn, lists his reason for asking for exemption from military service as “member of Church of God.”

The older son, Stafford Sylas Winn, was held in military detention at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas, for refusal to serve in military service.  He is one of a small number of African-Americans, perhaps the only son of a slave, to be held in military detention in WWI as a prisoner of conscience.  The photo above is his record of court martial out of the military at Fort Sam Houston, TX, 31 May 1918.  From there, he was sent to Ft. Leavenworth Military Detention, KS.

National Archives (RG-153, JAG, Army, Courts Martial Case Files; from                       James Juhnke and Robert Krieder collection, Bethel College, N. Newton, KS).

Ward Eldon Harris, COG Guthrie, OK, WWI Draft Registration