The Mississippi Writers Page
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On This Day in Mississippi Literary History:

Feb. 1

1932: William Faulkner published “Once Aboard the Lugger” in the Saturday Evening Post.

1937: Baptist theologian Walter B. Shurden was born in Greenwood, Mississippi.

1948: Political scientist Charles Lipson was born in Clarksdale, Mississippi.

Feb. 2

1909: Biology professor Joseph J. Schwab was born in Columbus, Mississippi.

1910: Sociologist Romeo Benjamin Garrett was born in Natchez, Mississippi.

1933: William Faulkner began taking flying lessons.

1948: Historian Charles Reagan Wilson was born in Nashville, Tennessee.

1992: Writer and rancher Con Sellers, who wrote more than 100 novels under the pseudonyms “Robert Crane” and “Lee Raintree,” as well as others, died in Medford, Oregon, from complications resulting from an intestinal aneurysm.

Feb. 3

1907: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Hodding Carter was born in Hammond, Louisiana.

1951: Tennessee WilliamsThe Rose Tattoo opened at the Martin Beck Theatre on Broadway in New York, starring Maureen Stapleton and Eli Wallach.

1979: Educator and children’s book writer Charlemae Hill Rollins died.

Feb. 4

1953: Novelist and journalist Ben Ames Williams died of a heart attack in Brookline, Massachusetts.

Feb. 5

1948: William Ferris, anthropologist, folklorist, and founding director of the Center for the Study of Southern Culture at the University of Mississippi, was born in Vicksburg, Mississippi.

1994: A jury in Hinds County, Mississippi, convicted white supremacist Byron de la Beckwith for the 1963 murder of civil rights activist Medgar Evers. This was de la Beckwith’s third trial; the first two in the 1960s ended in hung juries.

2002: Publication of The Summons, a novel by John Grisham.

Feb. 6

1942: Harper’s Magazine accepted Eudora Welty’s story “The Wide Net” for publication. It had been previously rejected by the Saturday Evening Post, Collier’s, Red Book, Country Gentleman, Ladies Home Journal, and Atlantic, among others.

1988: Young adult fiction writer Iris Vinton died of breast cancer in New York City.

Feb. 7

1911: Football coach Glenn Ellison was born in Pittsboro, Mississippi.

1936: Poet and phsyciain John Stone was born in Jackson, Mississippi.

1954: Author and poet Maxwell Bodenheim was fatally shot by Harold Weinberg while on a drinking spree. Weinberg then stabbed Bodenheim’s wife Ruth to death, as well.

Feb. 8

1913: Newspaper columnist Orville B. Eustis was born in Greenville, Mississippi.

1925: William Faulkner published “Mirrors of Chartres Street” in the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

1942: Novelist Peggy Webb was born in Mooreville, Mississippi.

1944: Writer David Blagden was born in Biloxi, Mississippi.

1955: Novelist John Grisham was born in Jonesboro, Arkansas.

Feb. 9

1930: English professor Carl E. Bain was born in Jackson, Mississippi.

1931: The novel Sanctuary, by William Faulkner, was published by Cape & Smith.

1997: The television movie Old Man, based on the novella by William Faulkner, was broadcast on CBS.

2001: The motion picture Hannibal, sequel to Silence of the Lambs and based on a novel by Thomas Harris, premiered in theatres.

Feb. 10

1699: Pierre Le Moyne, Sieur d’Iberville, leading a French expedition to establish a permanent settlement in Louisiana, first entered present-day Mississippi at Ship Island.

1913: Poet Charles Henri Ford was born in Brookhaven, Mississippi.

1934: William Faulkner published “A Bear Hunt” in the Saturday Evening Post.

1951: William Faulkner’s Notes on a Horsethief was published.

1993: Children’s writer Otto R. Salassi died of liver disease in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Feb. 11

1941: The Atlantic Monthly accepted Eudora Welty’s short story “Why I Live At the P.O.” for publication.

1954: Shall Not Perish, teleplay by William Faulkner based on his story, was broadcast on Lux Video Theatre.

1969: Boys in the Band, a play by Mart Crowley, opened in London at Wyndham’s.

Feb. 12

2002: A Multitude of Sins: Stories, by Richard Ford, was published.

Feb. 13

1918: Poet, professor, and U.S. Air Force officer Joseph B. Roberts, Jr., was born in Yazoo City, Mississippi.

1943: William Faulkner published “Shingles for the Lord” in the Saturday Evening Post.

Feb. 14

1871: Writer Katherine Sherwood Bonner married Edward McDowell in Holly Springs, Mississippi.

Feb. 15

1896: Writer Pearl Rivers died in an influenza epidemic in New Orleans.

1925: William Faulkner published “Damon and Pythias Unlimited” in the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

1938: The Unvanquished, a novel by William Faulkner, was published by Random House.

1957: William Faulkner went to the University of Virginia for his second semester as writer-in-residence.

1979: English professor Richmond Pugh Bond died in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Feb. 16

1913: Lewis W. Walt, a writer and general in the U.S. Marine Corps, was born in Waubaunsee County, Kansas.

1938: Science fiction writer David Houston was born in Tupelo, Mississippi.

1944: Novelist Richard Ford was born in Jackson, Mississippi.

Feb. 17

1908: Sportcaster Walter Lanier “Red” Barber was born in Columbus, Mississippi.

Feb. 18

1861: Jefferson Davis, a former U.S. senator from Mississippi, was inaugurated the first and only president of the Confederate States of America in Montgomery, Alabama, a month prior to Abraham Lincoln’s inauguration in Washington, D.C.

1931: Writer Abe M. Tahir, Jr., was born in Greenwood, Mississippi.

1979: Crimes of the Heart, a play by Beth Henley, was first produced in Louisville, Kentucky, by Actors Studio.

2002: Hunting Season by Nevada Barr was published.

Feb. 19

1932: In Oxford, William Faulkner completed work on his novel Light in August.

1945: Writer Clifton L. Taulbert was born in Glen Allan, Mississippi.

1954: George F. Paul, a writer and specialist in antique phonographs, was born in Oxford, Mississippi.

1960: English professor and novelist Margaret McMullan was born in Newton, Mississippi.

Feb. 20

1935: Novelist Ellen Gilchrist was born in Vicksburg, Mississippi.

1949: Jason Berry, writer and press secretary for Charles Evers during his campaign for the Mississippi governorship in 1971, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana.

1956: Tennessee Williams received notification from the Group Theatre in New York City that he had been awarded $100 for three one-act plays under the title American Blues which included “Moony’s Kid Don’t Cry,” “The Dark Room,” and “The Case of the Crushed Petunias.” Williams had listed his birth year as 1914 in order to qualify for the contest limited to those aged 25 and under. He was actually 28 years old at the time.

1984: Eudora Welty’s One Writer’s Beginnings was published by Harvard University Press in Cambridge.

Feb. 21

1880: Educator David Edgar Guyton was born in Blue Mountain, Mississippi.

1918: Frank E. Smith, a former U.S. Congressman, newspaper editor, TVA administrator, and educator, was born in Sidon, Mississippi.

1936: Business consultant James A. Vaughan was born in Shannon, Mississippi.

1939: Historian Steven E. Ozment was born in MacComb, Mississippi.

Feb. 22

1937: Eudora Welty’s story “Old Mr. Grenada” was accepted for publication by the Southern Review; the story was retitled “Old Mr. Marblehall” in A Curtain of Green.

2002: The motion picture Big Bad Love, based on the short story collection by Larry Brown, premiered in New York.

Feb. 23

1870: The state of Mississippi was readmitted to the United States after the Civil War, the ninth state to do so.

1943: English professor Noel Polk was born in Picayune, Mississippi.

Feb. 24

1844: The Mississippi legislature chartered the University of Mississippi, the first public institution of higher learning in the state. The university would be built in Oxford, whose townspeople had named it that in hope of attracting the state university.

1905: Novelist Alice Walworth Graham was born in Natchez, Mississippi.

1983: Playwright Tennessee Williams choked to death at age 71 on the cap of an eyedropper he probably mistook for a sleeping pill at the Hotel Elysée in New York City.

Feb. 25

1894: Historian William Leo Hansberry was born in Gloster, Mississippi.

1919: Baptist theologian Fred D. Howard was born in Fulton, Mississippi.

1926: The novel Soldiers’ Pay, by William Faulkner (his first), was published by Boni & Liveright.

Feb. 26

1849: Writer Katherine Sherwood Bonner was born in Holly Springs, Mississippi.

1920: Historian John Hebron Moore was born in Greenville, Mississippi.

1954: English professor and fiction writer Danny Duncan Collum was born in Greenwood, Mississippi.

Feb. 27

1932: William Faulkner published “Lizard's in Jamshyd’s Courtyard” in the Saturday Evening Post.

1939: Suffragist and state legislator Belle Kearney died of cancer in Jackson, Mississippi.

1941: Horror and fantasy writer Mary J. Turner (Shannon Riley) was born near Ripley, Mississippi.

Feb. 28

1954: Bobby Delaughter, author of Never Too Late: A Prosecutor’s Story of Justice in the Medgar Evers Case, was born in Vicksburg, Mississippi.

Feb. 29 1988: Theologian Paul Ramsey died of a heart attack in Princeton, New Jersey.