See biographies by H. M. Chesnutt (1952), J. N. Hermance (1974), and F. R. Keller (1977); studies by S. L. Render (1974) and W. L. Andrews (1980).
(born June 20, 1858, Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.—died Nov. 15, 1932, Cleveland) U.S. writer, the first important African American novelist. As a young school principal in North Carolina, he was so distressed by the treatment of African Americans that he moved his family to Cleveland, where he became an attorney and began writing in his spare time. He published numerous tales and essays, two collections of short stories, a biography of Frederick Douglass, and three novels, including The Colonel's Dream (1905). A psychological realist, he used familiar scenes of folk life to protest social injustice.
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