Paul Laurence Dunbar photograph   Save
Ohio History Connection
Description: Photograph of Paul Laurance Dunbar (1872-1906), an African American poet, lyricist, and author from Dayton, Ohio, ca. 1890. Dunbar was born in Dayton, Ohio, in 1872 to Joshua and Matilda Dunbar, both former slaves, and was encouraged by his mother in poetry and his schooling from an early age. He attended Dayton Central High School and was the sole African American student at that time. He served briefly as the editor of the Dayton Tattler, a newspaper produced primarily for Dayton's black community and published by Dunbar's classmate, Orville Wright. Following his high school graduation, Dunbar worked as an elevator operator while writing poetry in his free time. He built a reputation as a successful literary voice and writer of dialect poetry, and was the first African American poet to receive critical acclaim for his work. Dunbar authored twelve collections of poetry, five novels, one play, and a large number of newspaper articles before his death from tuberculosis on February 9, 1906. He is buried in Woodland Cemetery in Dayton. View on Ohio Memory.
Image ID: AL02738
Subjects: Dunbar, Paul Laurence, 1872-1906; African American poets; American poetry--Ohio; Literary Ohio
Places: Dayton (Ohio); Montgomery County (Ohio)