Arna Bontemps – a noted Black poet, author, anthologist, librarian – was born in Alexandria, Louisiana on October 13, 1902.

He is credited with writing over 20 books, plays, and anthologies and was considered the leading authority on the Harlem Renaissance.
He was part of a core of young Black writers who led the “New Negro” movement. Bontemps wanted a front row seat to view and participate in the stirrings of jazz, theater and literature taking place in Harlem.

His scholarly interest in fostering a new appraisal of his race and re-evaluation of the Black man’s place in American history is just a part of his legacy.

His children’s books are unique and his poetry and writings convey the rhythms and richness of the African American culture which was to influence a number of writers who followed him. (Edwin Blair. “Literary Habitats.” Preservation in Print. September 1996.)

Historic Name: Arna Wendell Bontemps House
Other Names:  
Address: 1327 Third Street
City: Alexandria
Parish: Rapides
State: LA
Zipcode: 71301
Status: National Register
Date Placed on National Register: 9/13/1993
Level of Significance: National
Area of Significance: Literature; Ethnic Heritage
Property Type: Urban Residence
Architectural Style: Queen Anne Revival
Theme: African-American Heritage; Anglo-American Architecture

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