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Charles Spurgeon Johnson

Charles Spurgeon Johnson
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Winold Reiss, 16 Sep 1886 - 29 Aug 1953
Charles Spurgeon Johnson, 25 Jul 1893 - 27 Oct 1956
c. 1925
Pastel on illustration board
76.3cm x 54.7cm (30 1/16" x 21 9/16"), Accurate
Frame: 89.2 × 67.2 × 2.5cm (35 1/8 × 26 7/16 × 1")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of Lawrence A. Fleischman and Howard Garfinkle with a matching grant from the National Endowment for the Arts
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Born Bristol, Virginia
Charles Spurgeon Johnson’s studies on race relations in twentieth-century America made him, along with W.E.B. Du Bois and E. Franklin Frazier, a "founding father" for black sociologists. After graduating as a student of sociologist Robert E. Park at the University of Chicago and seeing combat in World War I, Johnson returned to Chicago in 1919, amid one of the worst race riots in American history. As associate director of the investigating commission, he authored The Negro in Chicago, now considered a classic analysis of the roots of race riots. Johnson next served as research director of the New York Urban League, where in 1923 he founded and edited the journal Opportunity. In this capacity Johnson became known as the "entrepreneur of the Harlem Renaissance," providing a publication outlet for such talented black writers as Langston Hughes and Zora Neale Hurston.
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
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