Knight, Etheridge, 1931-1991

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Ethridge Knight Jr. (son of Etheridge Sr. and Belzora Cozart Knight) was born in Corinth, Mississippi, on 19 April 1931. He grew up in Corinth and Paducah, Kentucky, attended local schools and dropped out after the eighth grade. He joined the United States Army in 1947. He was wounded during the Korean Conflict and developed an addiction to drugs and alcohol. After his discharge from the service he turned to crime in support of his habit and in 1960 was arrested for armed robbery. He was incarcerated in the Indiana State Prison from 1960 to 1968. While in prison he began to write poetry and submitted his writings to publishing houses. After many rejections his first work was published in 1965. After his release from prison he married fellow poet Sonia Sanchez. They divorced and he married two more times. He authored five books of poetry and a wide range of articles in periodicals and anthologies. He served as poet or writer-in-residence at several universities and colleges and received numerous awards. In November 1988 he was injured by a hit-and-run motorist in Philadelphia. He returned to Indianapolis after his accident, and remained there until his death 10 March 1991.

From the description of Papers, 1955-2000. (Indiana Historical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 54809714

Born in 1931 in Mississippi and raised in Kentucky, Knight did not finish high school and left home at 17. He served in the Army from 1947 to 1951 as a medical technician in Korea. By 1949 his family had moved to Indianapolis, Ind. In 1960 Knight was sentenced to the Indiana State Prison for robbery. While there he studied poetry and published his first book in 1968, receiving parole later that year. He continued writing, publishing, speaking, and holding poet-in-residence positions in spite of continuing drug, alcohol, legal, and marital problems. He died in Indianapolis in 1991.

From the description of Etheridge Knight collection, 1968-1991; bulk 1982-1991. (Butler University Libraries). WorldCat record id: 43964710

Afro-American poet.

From the description of Papers, 1965-1985. (University of Toledo). WorldCat record id: 14062097

Etheridge Knight is an African-American poet and editor.

From the description of Etheridge Knight biographical materials, ca. 1984. (Pennsylvania State University Libraries). WorldCat record id: 49571740

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Knight, Etheridge. Papers, 1955-2000. Indiana Historical Society Library
creatorOf Knight, Etheridge. Etheridge Knight biographical materials, ca. 1984. Pennsylvania State University Libraries
creatorOf Knight, Etheridge. Etheridge Knight collection, 1968-1991; bulk 1982-1991. Butler University Libraries
creatorOf Bly, Robert. Robert Bly miscellaneous materials series, 1946-2000s. University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
creatorOf Bly, Robert. Robert Bly papers, circa 1900s-2009 (bulk 1946-1999). University of Minnesota, Minneapolis
referencedIn Lane, Pinkie Gordon. Pinkie Gordon Lane papers, 1925-2001 (bulk 1970-2000). Louisiana State University, LSU Libraries
creatorOf Knight, Etheridge. Office files of The American Poetry Review, 1973-1989. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
creatorOf Madgett, Naomi Cornelia Long. Naomi Long Madgett and Lotus Press papers. 1937-2004 (bulk 1970-2003). University of Michigan
creatorOf Knight, Etheridge. Papers, 1965-1985. University of Toledo, William S. Carlson Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Banks, Tom. person
associatedWith Bly, Robert. person
correspondedWith Brooks, Gwendolyn, 1917-2000 person
associatedWith Correale, David S. person
associatedWith Etheridge Knight Festival of the Arts. corporateBody
associatedWith Ferris, William. person
associatedWith Gracie, James Francis. person
associatedWith Indiana State Prison. corporateBody
associatedWith Jewitt, Bill. person
associatedWith Kalafski, Francis. person
associatedWith Knight-Bowens, Eunice. person
associatedWith Knight family. family
associatedWith Lane, Pinkie Gordon. person
associatedWith Madgett, Naomi Cornelia Long. person
associatedWith Martin University (Indianapolis, Ind.) corporateBody
associatedWith McAnally, Mary. person
associatedWith McKim, Elizabeth person
associatedWith Morrow, Lorinda. person
associatedWith Randall, Dudley, 1914-2000. person
associatedWith Robertson, Carol Ann person
associatedWith Sanchez, Sonia, 1934- person
associatedWith Sanchez, Sonia, 1934- person
associatedWith Sullivan, John E. person
associatedWith Tipton, James. person
associatedWith Victor, Tom. person
associatedWith William, Charles. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Indiana--Michigan City
United States
Prisoners' writing, American
Poetry--Study and teaching
Political poetry
African American veterans
Prison reformers
Poets, American
Protest poetry
American poetry--African American authors
Poetry, Modern--20th century
American poetry--20th century
Prisoners as authors
African American poets
Poetry--Social aspects
Prisoner's writings


Birth 1931-04-19

Death 1991-03-10





Ark ID: w6v72xbd

SNAC ID: 57737051