James Ephraim McGirt

1874–1930

An African American writer, publisher, and businessman, James Ephraim McGirt was born in Robeson County in North Carolina. In 1895, he earned a BA from Bennett College. McGirt worked as a manual laborer until 1903, when he moved to Philadelphia and launched McGirt’s Magazine. As editor and publisher, McGirt featured his own prose and poetry “urging race advancement along with writings by prominent African Americans.” In 2004, McGirt was inducted into the Literary Hall of Fame by the North Carolina Writers’ Network. Although he did not garner literary acclaim during his lifetime, McGirt created a significant publishing outlet for other early-20th-century African American writers.

What People are Saying

"I learned that no matter how many times I do it, I will still be nervous when I speak in public. I also learned that it is possible to experience the same poem many times in a row and still feel like I am discovering something new about myself through the words of the writer."
Madeleine Schroeder
2017 OH POL Champion