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Person Detail: Nella Larsen

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General Information:
Full Name: Nella Larsen
Biography:
(1891/93-1964) African American fiction writer. Nella Larsen was born in Chicago to a Danish mother and a West Indian father, who died when Nella was two. Her mother then married a man of her own race and nationality, a situation which some have said has informed Larsen's writing. After studies in Nashville and then, in Copenhagen, Larsen studied nursing from 1912-1915 at Lincoln Hospital in New York City. Her love of books led her to take a job as librarian in the Harlem Branch of the New York Public Library first as assistant librarian from 1922-23 and then as children's librarian from 1924-26. Her short story "Correspondence" was published in September of 1926, the same month she quit her job at the library. She fell in with the major Black authors of the Harlem Renaissance including James Weldon Johnson, Jessie Fauset, Jean Toomer, and Langston Hughes. She wrote "Quicksand" (1928), and "Passing" (1929). Larsen was the first black woman to receive a Guggenheim fellowship for creative writing which she got in 1930. Larsen was eventually accused of plagiarism, and after a scandalous divorce, she receded from the literary life. She worked as a nurse in Manhattan from 1941 until her death in 1964.
Author's Timeline:
1891 (Unknown) County
Nellie Marian Walker was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1891/93. 
1964 New York County
Nella Larsen died in New York, New York in 1964. 
1912 Bronx County
Larsen studied nursing from 1912-1915 at Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx, New York.  
1922 New York County
Her love of books led her to take a job as librarian in the Harlem Branch of the New York Public Library first as assistant librarian from 1922-23 and then as children's librarian from 1924-26. 
1926 (Unknown) County
Correspondence
 
1928 (Unknown) County
Quicksand
(Pub: New York: Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN: )
Novel. 
1929 (Unknown) County
Passing
(Pub: New York: Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN: )
Novel. 
1941 New York County
Larsen worked as a nurse in Manhattan, New York from 1941 until her death in 1964.  

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