June 30, 1908 Allen Allensworth founded the town of Allensworth in the heart of the San Joaquin Valley as an all-Black community. It is the only California town founded, financed, and governed by African Americans. By 1914, the town was reported to be 900 acres of deeded land worth more than $112,500. Over the next couple of decades, the town became a ghost town. Parts of it have been preserved as the Colonel Allensworth State Historical Park which was listed on the National Register of Historic Places February 23, 1972. Allen Allensworth was born enslaved April 7, 1842 in Louisville, Kentucky. He escaped slavery by joining the Union Army during the Civil War. He was ordained a Baptist minister in 1871 and led several churches in Kentucky. He was the only Black delegate from Kentucky to the Republican National Convention in 1880 and 1884. Allensworth was appointed military chaplain to a unit of Buffalo Soldiers in 1886 and by the time he retired in 1906 had reached the rank of lieutenant colonel, the first African American to achieve that rank. After leaving military service, He moved to Los Angeles, California and founded the town of Allensworth. Allensworth died September 14, 1914. Biographies of Allensworth include “Battles and Victories of Allen Allensworth” (1914) and “Out of Darkness: The Story of Allen Allensworth” (1998).