The Harlem Renaissance

Zora Neale Hurston
African American writer and folklore scholar who played a key role in the Harlem Renaissance

Great Migration
Major relocation of African Americans to northern cities from 1910 and into 1920s

Harlem Renaissance
Blossoming of African American art and literature that began in the 1920s

Marcus Garvey
Famous figure in the World War I he took great pride in his African heritage

James Weldon Johnson
NAACP leader and Harlem Renaissance writer; he wrote poetry and, with his brother, the song “lift every voice and sing”

Langston Hughes
African American poet who described the rich culture of African American life using rhymes influenced by jazz music. Wrote African American hope and defiance, as well as the culture of Harlem and also had a major impact on the Harlem Renaissance

Paul Robeson
African American actor and singer who promotes African American rights and left-wing causes

American music form that blends several different musical forms from the Deep South; often includes improvisation

Louis Armstrong
Leading performer on the Harlem jazz scene; he was talented trumpeter whose style influenced many later musicians

Bessie Smith
African American blues singer who played in important part in the Harlem Renaissance

D.W. Griffith
Filmmaker who produced Birth of a Nation during World War I, which introduced many advanced filmmaking techniques

Charlie Chaplin
British comedian and movie star; he became famous for playing the character of the “little tramp” in silent movies in the 1920s

Charles A.


American pilot; he became the first person to fly alone across the Atlantic Ocean nonstop in 1927. Hero to millions of Americans

Crossing the Atlantic Ocean

Amelia Earhart
American pilot; first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean and set many speed and distance records. Disappeared in Pacific Ocean

F. Scott Fitzgerald
American writer famous for his novels and stories, such as the great gatsby, which captured the mood of the 1920s. He gave the decade the nickname “jazz age”

George Gershwin
Composer whose famous piece “rhapsody in blue” showed the impact of jazz on the 1920s

Young women of the era who defined traditional ideas of proper dress and behavior.

They shocked society by chopping off their hair, raising their hemlines, wearing makeup, smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, and going dancing in nightclubs

Key ideas and beliefs a person holds

Billy Sunday
American fundamentalist minister; he used colorful language and powerful sermons to drive home the message of salvation through Jesus and to oppose radical and progressive groups

A belief in the literal interception of a particular religion’s doctrine or holy books

Aimee Semple McPherson
American fundamentalist preacher who was well known for her glamorous presentation

Theory which holds that inherited characteristics of a population change over generations and that as a result of these changes, new species sometimes arise

Clarence Darrow
Famous American criminal lawyer; he defended John Scopes’s right to teach evolution in the scopes trial

William Jennings Bryan
American lawyer and populist politician, he favored the free coinage of silver, An economic policy expected to help farmers. Democratic candidate for president in 1896 and he was defeated by William McKinley

Liquor smugglers

Illegal bars where alcohol was served