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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.

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