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An Alice Dunbar-Nelson Chronology

Gloria T. Hull

1875    July 19, born in New Orleans, Louisiana.

1892    Graduated from Straight College, New Orleans; subsequently studied at Cornell, Columbia, the Pennsylvania School of Industrial Art, and the University of Pennsylvania, specializing in English educational measurements and psychology.

1892-1896    Taught school in New Orleans.

1895    Published Violets and Other Tales (Boston: The Monthly Review Press)—short stories and poems.

1897-1898    Taught in Brooklyn, New York; helped to found the White Rose Mission, which became the White Rose Home for Girls in Harlem.

1898    March 8, married poet Paul Laurence Dunbar and began living in Washington, D.C.

1899    Published The Goodness of St. Rocque and Other Stories (New York: Dodd, Mead, and Co. )—short stories.

1902    Separated from Paul Laurence Dunbar and moved to Wilmington, Delaware (he died February 6, 1906).

1902-1920    Taught and administered at the Howard High School, Wilmington; for seven of these years, also directed the summer sessions for in-service teachers at State College for Colored Students (now Delaware State College). Dover; and taught two years in the summer session at Hampton Institute.

1909    April, published "Wordsworth's Use of Milton's Description of Pandemonium" in Modern Language Notes.

1910    January 19, married teacher Henry Arthur Callis secretly in Wilmington. He left the next year for medical school in Chicago. (They were later divorced at some unknown time.)

1913-1914    Wrote for and helped edit the A.M.E. Church Review.

1914    Edited and published Masterpieces of Negro Eloquence (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: The Douglass Publishing Company).

1915    Was field organizer for the Middle Atlantic States in the campaign for women's suffrage.

1916    April 20, married Robert J. Nelson, a journalist.

1916-1917    Published a two-part article, "People of Color in Louisiana," in The Journal of Negro History.

1917-1928    Published poems in Crisis, Ebony and Topaz, Opportunity, Negro Poets and Their Poems, Caroling Dusk, The Dunbar Speaker and Entertainer, Harlem: A Forum of Negro Lift, etc.

1918    Toured the South as a field representative of the Woman's Committee of the Council of National Defense.

1920    Served on the State Republican Committee of Delaware and directed political activities among black women; edited and published The Dunbar Speaker and Entertainer (Naperville, Illinois: J. L. Nichols and Co.); drawing on her interests in juvenile delinquency and "abnormal psychology," worked with women from the State Federation of Colored Women to found the Industrial School for Colored Girls in Marshalltown, Delaware.

1920-1922    Coedited and published the Wilmington Advocate newspaper.

1921    August, began her Diary and kept an extant portion of it for the remainder of the year.

1922    Headed the Anti-Lynching Crusaders in Delaware fighting for the Dyer Anti-Lynching Bill.

1924    Directed the Democratic political campaign among black women from New York headquarters; August and September, published a two-part article on Delaware in "These 'Colored' United States" in The Messenger.

1924-1928    Was teacher and parole officer at the Industrial School for Colored Girls.

1926    January 2-September 18, wrote column "From A Woman's Point of View" (later changed to "Une Femme Dit") in the Pittsburgh Courier.

1926-1930    Wrote column "As In a Looking Glass" in the Washington Eagle (her columns and/or versions of them were also syndicated for the Associated Negro Press).

1926-1931    Resumed and kept the remaining extant portions of her Diary.

1928-1931 Was executive secretary of the American Friends Inter-Racial Peace Committee, which entailed much travel and public speaking.

1930    January-May, wrote column "So It Seems to Alice Dunbar-Nelson" in the    Pittsburgh Courier.

1931    Included in James Weldon Johnson's The Book of American Negro Poetry.

1932    Moved to Philadelphia, after Robert was appointed to the Pennsylvania Athletic (Boxing) Commission in January.

1935    September 18, died of heart trouble at the University of Pennsylvania Hospital. She was cremated in Wilmington and her ashes eventually scattered over the Delaware River.

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