Rentie Grove

Rentie Grove was an All-Black Town that was located near what is now currently 91st Street and Harvard Avenue nearby Jenks, OK. I had never heard about the history or even the name of this All-Black Town until this class, despite growing up in a town fifteen minutes away. Even though Rentie Grove never became officially incorporated, they still had many community businesses like the post office, schoolhouse, churches, a gas station, and a cemetery.

Family members visiting the Rentie Grove Community Cemetery

One of the most attractive of those features to the freedpeople who were moving to Rentie Grove was the school because they would be able to provide their children with the education they were not allowed to have themselves. I think that Rentie Grove, like other All-Black Towns, provided Black individuals with a community where they could raise a family, go to church, attend school, and work where they wanted, which was not a possibility elsewhere. From personal accounts I have read about the town, Rentie Grove was also a place where everyone knew each other, with members of the community and their families still visiting where the town once was. Today, all that remains of Rentie Grove is a small white wood-frame church, the cemetery, and a handful of stones that were left from the foundation of the schoolhouse, that are kept on display at Jenks East Middle School. All though the physical remnants left of Rentie Grove are few, the history of this community is being kept alive through the memories and stories passed down through generations.

Rentie Grove's Demise
Rentie Grove Baptist Church

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