Zora Neale Hurston - Folklorist, Birthday and Childhood

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Zora Neale Hurston's Personal Details

Zora Neale Hurston was a well-known American folklorist, anthropologist and author

InformationDetail
BirthdayJanuary 7, 1891
Died onJanuary 28, 1960
NationalityAmerican
FamousFolklorist, African American Authors, African Americans, Black Authors, Black Republicans, Columbia University, Howard University, Intellectuals & Academics, Anthropologists, Novelists
City/StateAlabama
SpousesAlbert Price III, Herbert Sheen
SiblingsJack, Sarah
Universities
  • Columbia University,Howard University
  • Columbia University
  • Barnard College
  • Morgan State University
  • Howard University
Notable Alumnis
  • Columbia University
  • Howard University
Founder / Co-Founder
  • The Hilltop
Birth PlaceNotasulga
GenderFemale
FatherJohn Hurston
MotherLucy Potts
Sun SignCapricorn
Born inNotasulga
Famous asFolklorist, Anthropologist
Died at Age69

// Famous Folklorist

Zora Neale Hurston's photo

Who is Zora Neale Hurston?

Zora Neale Hurston was a well-known American folklorist, anthropologist and author. Born in Alabama, she wrote plays, short stories and essays apart from novels, during the Harlem Renaissance period. She spent some time collecting folklore and stories from Latin America, the Caribbean and the South, and brought them out in her book ‘Mules and Men’. This way she recorded tales of various traditions, including the African-American culture that she herself belonged to. Her illustrious career spanned over a period of thirty years. Starting her life with a peaceful childhood, Hurston soon had to face the hardships of life with her mother’s early death. She displayed the knack of winning people’s hearts with her keen sense of humour and her great intellect. Though very social, the novelist was equally dedicated to her work. At times, she would retire to her bedroom to write in private, even when parties were in full swing in the living room. Despite gaining appreciation as a promising writer of the Harlem Renaissance, poverty kept chasing her and even in her last days she had to take up menial jobs. She breathed her last in Florida, and was buried in an unmarked grave. The famous writer Alice Walker located this eminent folklorist’s grave, and marked it with a headstone.

// Famous Intellectuals & Academics

Childhood & Early Life

Zora Neale Hurston was born on January 7, 1891, in Notasulga, to John Hurston and Lucy Potts Hurston. She was their fifth child, and had she seven siblings.

She was brought up entirely in Eatonville in Florida. When her mother died in 1904, her happy childhood came to a hurried end, and her father remarried.

She left home and took up basic jobs and strived to complete her schooling. She reached Baltimore in 1917, and studied in Morgan Academy to finish her high school education.

In 1918, Zora Neale Hurston started attending Howard University in Washington D.C and obtained an associate degree in 1920.

Career

She came out with her very first story ‘John Redding Goes to Sea’ in the magazine of the campus literary society, in 1921.

In December 1924, she published a short story titled, ’Drenched in Light’ in the magazine, ‘Opportunity’.

Between 1925 and 1927, she studied anthropology with Franz Boas in Barnard College.

With Langston Hughes and Wallace Thurman, she came up with a literary magazine called ‘Fire!!’ in 1926. However, they did not publish more than one issue.

Hurston wrote a number of short stories and articles for many magazines like ‘Opportunity’ and ‘The Negro Digest’. In February 1927, she collected folklore by travelling to Florida. She received a Bachelor of Anthropology degree from Barnard, the same year.

In 1932, she collaborated with the creative literature department of Rollins College in Florida and produced a concert of Negro music.

In January 1935, she began her work for a Ph.D. in anthropology at Columbia University. For this, she earned a fellowship from Rosenwald Foundation. She also won a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1937 to conduct research on ethnography in Jamaica and Haiti.

This folklorist wrote her greatest work ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’ in 1937, when she was in Haiti. She later joined Paramount Pictures as a story consultant.

Throughout the 1940s, she kept publishing her works in some of the prominent journals like ‘The American Mercury’ and ‘The Saturday Evening Post’.

In June 1956, she worked as a librarian at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida. A couple of years later, she took up a job as a substitute teacher at Lincoln Park Academy, Fort Pierce.

Major Works

In 1935, this accomplished writer published ‘Mules and Men’ which was a collection of African American folk tales. It is regarded as one of the best works on folklore and culture of the blacks.

In September 1937, Zora Neale Hurston published her greatest work ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’. Though it was not received well in the beginning, the novel was subsequently appreciated in the 1970s and 1980s. It has been included in the list of 100 best English-language novels published since 1923, by the magazine, ‘Time’.

She also came out with an autobiography titled ‘Dust Tracks on a Road’ in 1942, which was much appreciated for its literary content by critics.

Awards & Achievements

In 1925, Hurston entered the literary contest of the magazine ‘Opportunity’. She won the second-place for both the story, ‘Spunk’ and the play, ‘Color Struck’.

In June 1939, she was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from Morgan State College.

For her autobiography, she won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Race Relations, in 1943. The same year she also became the recipient of Howard University's Distinguished Alumni Award.

Personal Life & Legacy

Zora Neale Hurston first married Herbert Sheen, whom she divorced in 1931. Her second marriage was to Albert Prince, a man 25 years her junior, in 1939. This marriage lasted only seven months before ending.

In 1948, this talented anthropologist was falsely accused of molesting a ten-year-old boy. However, she was acquitted later.

Early in 1959, she suffered a stroke, and entered the St. Lucie County Welfare Home. She suffered from hypertensive heart disease and breathed her last in the same institution on January 28, 1960.

Trivia

This eminent writer had to give her year of birth as 1901, ten years later than her actual year of birth, to be eligible for free public schooling.

This American folklorist grew up in a rural community for blacks, the first of its kind in the nation, established in the year 1887.

// Famous Novelists

Zora Neale Hurston awards

YearNameAward

Other

1956 - Bethune-Cookman College Award
- Anisfield-Wolf Book Award

Zora Neale Hurston biography timelines

  • // 7th Jan 1891
    Zora Neale Hurston was born on January 7, 1891, in Notasulga, to John Hurston and Lucy Potts Hurston. She was their fifth child, and had she seven siblings.
  • // 1901
    This eminent writer had to give her year of birth as 1901, ten years later than her actual year of birth, to be eligible for free public schooling.
  • // 1904
    She was brought up entirely in Eatonville in Florida. When her mother died in 1904, her happy childhood came to a hurried end, and her father remarried.
  • // 1917
    She left home and took up basic jobs and strived to complete her schooling. She reached Baltimore in 1917, and studied in Morgan Academy to finish her high school education.
  • // 1918 To 1920
    In 1918, Zora Neale Hurston started attending Howard University in Washington D.C and obtained an associate degree in 1920.
  • // 1921
    She came out with her very first story ‘John Redding Goes to Sea’ in the magazine of the campus literary society, in 1921.
  • // Sep 1923 To Sep 1937
    In September 1937, Zora Neale Hurston published her greatest work ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’. Though it was not received well in the beginning, the novel was subsequently appreciated in the 1970s and 1980s. It has been included in the list of 100 best English-language novels published since 1923, by the magazine, ‘Time’.
  • // 1924
    In December 1924, she published a short story titled, ’Drenched in Light’ in the magazine, ‘Opportunity’.
  • // 1925 To 1927
    Between 1925 and 1927, she studied anthropology with Franz Boas in Barnard College.
  • // 1925
    In 1925, Hurston entered the literary contest of the magazine ‘Opportunity’. She won the second-place for both the story, ‘Spunk’ and the play, ‘Color Struck’.
  • // 1926
    With Langston Hughes and Wallace Thurman, she came up with a literary magazine called ‘Fire!!’ in 1926. However, they did not publish more than one issue.
  • // 1927
    Hurston wrote a number of short stories and articles for many magazines like ‘Opportunity’ and ‘The Negro Digest’. In February 1927, she collected folklore by travelling to Florida. She received a Bachelor of Anthropology degree from Barnard, the same year.
  • // 1932
    In 1932, she collaborated with the creative literature department of Rollins College in Florida and produced a concert of Negro music.
  • // 1935 To 1937
    In January 1935, she began her work for a Ph.D. in anthropology at Columbia University. For this, she earned a fellowship from Rosenwald Foundation. She also won a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1937 to conduct research on ethnography in Jamaica and Haiti.
  • // 1935
    In 1935, this accomplished writer published ‘Mules and Men’ which was a collection of African American folk tales. It is regarded as one of the best works on folklore and culture of the blacks.
  • // 1937
    This folklorist wrote her greatest work ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’ in 1937, when she was in Haiti. She later joined Paramount Pictures as a story consultant.
  • // Jun 1939
    In June 1939, she was awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from Morgan State College.
  • // 1942
    She also came out with an autobiography titled ‘Dust Tracks on a Road’ in 1942, which was much appreciated for its literary content by critics.
  • // 1943
    For her autobiography, she won the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Race Relations, in 1943. The same year she also became the recipient of Howard University's Distinguished Alumni Award.
  • // Jun 1956
    In June 1956, she worked as a librarian at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida. A couple of years later, she took up a job as a substitute teacher at Lincoln Park Academy, Fort Pierce.
  • // 28th Jan 1960
    Early in 1959, she suffered a stroke, and entered the St. Lucie County Welfare Home. She suffered from hypertensive heart disease and breathed her last in the same institution on January 28, 1960.

// Famous Alumni of Columbia University

Zora Neale Hurston's FAQ

  • What is Zora Neale Hurston birthday?

    Zora Neale Hurston was born at 1891-01-07

  • When was Zora Neale Hurston died?

    Zora Neale Hurston was died at 1960-01-28

  • Where was Zora Neale Hurston died?

    Zora Neale Hurston was died in Fort Pierce

  • Which age was Zora Neale Hurston died?

    Zora Neale Hurston was died at age 69

  • Where is Zora Neale Hurston's birth place?

    Zora Neale Hurston was born in Notasulga

  • What is Zora Neale Hurston nationalities?

    Zora Neale Hurston's nationalities is American

  • Who is Zora Neale Hurston spouses?

    Zora Neale Hurston's spouses is Albert Price III, Herbert Sheen

  • Who is Zora Neale Hurston siblings?

    Zora Neale Hurston's siblings is Jack, Sarah

  • What was Zora Neale Hurston universities?

    Zora Neale Hurston studied at Columbia University,Howard University, Columbia University, Barnard College, Morgan State University, Howard University

  • What was Zora Neale Hurston notable alumnis?

    Zora Neale Hurston's notable alumnis is Columbia University, Howard University

  • Which company or organization was founded by Zora Neale Hurston?

    Zora Neale Hurston was the founder/co-founder of The Hilltop

  • Who is Zora Neale Hurston's father?

    Zora Neale Hurston's father is John Hurston

  • Who is Zora Neale Hurston's mother?

    Zora Neale Hurston's mother is Lucy Potts

  • What is Zora Neale Hurston's sun sign?

    Zora Neale Hurston is Capricorn

  • How famous is Zora Neale Hurston?

    Zora Neale Hurston is famouse as Folklorist, Anthropologist