MARCUS CHRISTIAN COLLECTION, ADDENDUM 1
Earl K. Long Library
University of New Orleans
Size: 1 box
Locations: Primarily New Orleans, La.
Dates: late 1930s-early 1940s, 1954
Summary: Typescript copies of New Orleans newspaper articles (n.d. and 1837-1941) on African Americans produced by members of the WPA's Federal Writers Program - Dillard Unit in late 1930s and early 1940s. Included are a few stray transcriptions of a later date.
Collections: Marcus Christian Collection (Mss 11)
Source: Gift, October 1992
Access: No restrictions
Copyright: Physical rights, copyright, and literary property rights are retained by the Earl K. Long Library, University of New Orleans.
Citation: Marcus Christian Collection, Addendum 1, Louisiana and Special Collections, Earl K. Long Library, University of New Orleans
Marcus Bruce Christian, the son of Emanual Banks Christian and Rebecca Harris, was born on March 8, 1900, in Mechanicsville (now incorporated into Houma), Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana. The son and grandson of teachers, he was educated at Houma Academy and an evening public school in New Orleans. Orphaned at thirteen, Christian moved to New Orleans in 1919 and resided there until his death on November 21, 1976.
From 1926 until 1935, Christian owned and operated a dry-cleaning business. In 1936 he joined the Federal Writers’ Project and was assigned to the “Colored Project” at Dillard University, eventually becoming its director and holding that post until the project’s demise in 1943. Under Christian’s authority, the Dillard project contributed information about black writers to the New Orleans City Guide (1938) and Louisiana: A Guide to the State (1941), both published by the Federal Writers’ Project.
Upon the termination of the Writers’ Project, Christian served as director of the Dillard University War Information Center. Also in 1943, he received a Julius Rosenwald Fellowship to pursue historical research on African Americans in Louisiana. A year later, he was appointed assistant librarian at Dillard. During this period he also operated his own printing company. From 1972 until his death in 1976, Christian held the post of special instructor in English and history at the University of New Orleans.
Widely acclaimed as poet laureate of the New Orleans African American community, Christian composed some two thousand poems over the course of his life. His first book of poetry was published in 1922, and he contributed poetic, literary, and historical works to the Afro-American, the Pittsburgh Courier, Opportunity, Crisis, the Dillard Arts Quarterly, the New Orleans States-Item, the New York Herald-Tribune, Phylon, and the Louisiana Weekly. He also served as poetry and contributing editor of the Louisiana Weekly. An active historian, Christian did extensive research on Louisiana and assisted in the writing of “A Black History of Louisiana,” an unpublished manuscript produced by the Federal Writers’ Project. His published works include Negro Ironworkers of Louisiana, 1718-1900; Battle of New Orleans; From the Deep South; and Common People’s Manifesto of World War II.
249-1 The series includes the following headings which were originally selected by members of the WPA's Federal Writers Program - Dillard Unit.
Accidents and Mortality, 1865-1876
Clinton Riot, 1875
Colfax Riot, 1873
Crime Against Freedman, 1865-1876
Crime by Slaves, 1840-1859
Crime - General, 1858-1874
Crime Laid on the Negro, 1866-1868
Emancipation and Emigration, 1868-1880
Fraternities, Lodges, Benevolent Associations, 1875-1881
Free Colored Crime, 1857
Fugitive Slaves, 1856-1858
Fusionist Party, 1873
Kansas Question, 1856-1858
Mechanics Institute Convention and Riot, 1866
Negro Churches, 1874-1941
Negro Dances, 1874
Negro Droll Stories and Attempted Witticisms, 1866-1881
Negro Education, 1873-1874
Negro in Politics in Louisiana, 1866-1921
Negro in Theater, 1875
Negro Soldiers, 1845-1941
Negro Suffrage, 1865-1941
New Orleans Tribune Editorials, 1865
Other States, 1866-1867
Politics in Louisiana, 1850-1880
Quadroon Balls, Slave Balls, 1841
Republican Refutation of Reconstruction Slanders, 1873
Riots, Uprisings, 1867-1880
Runaway Rewards, 1837 - ca. 1859, n.d.
Secession Discussion, 1850
Slave Stealing, 1841-1860
Slavers and Slave Trade, ca. 1854-1858
Southern Newspapers on Abolition, 1854
Want Ads, 1874
Christian, Marcus B.
Federal Writers’ Project—Louisiana