Du Bois Central (Special Collections & University Archives)
Resources on the life and legacy of W.E.B. Du Bois
Special Collections & University Archives
Bookmark and ShareDu Bois: A Chronology
1868 Born, February 23rd, Great Barrington, Massachusetts.
1880-1884 Attends Great Barrington High School; Western Massachusetts Correspondent for the New York Age, the New York Globe and the Springfield Republican; graduates as class valedictorian.
1885-1888 Attends Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee; teaches in rural school districts during the summers; editor of the Fisk Herald; receives B.A. in 1888.
1888-1890 Enters Harvard as a junior and receives B.A., graduating cum laude.
1890-1892 Begins graduate study at Harvard.
1892-1894 Studies at the University of Berlin with a fellowship from the Slater Fund.
1894-1896 Teaches Latin and Greek at Wilberforce University in Ohio; marries Nina Gomer.
1896 Receives Ph.D. from Harvard; his dissertation “The Suppression of the African Slave Trade” is published by Harvard University Press.
1896-1897 Instructor of Sociology, the University of Pennsylvania; publishes The Philadelphia Negro; son Burghardt Gomer Du Bois born on October 2, 1897.
1897-1910 Teaches history and economics, Atlanta University; initiates the Atlanta University Studies.
1899 Son Burghardt Gomer Du Bois dies on May 24, 1899.
1900 Daughter Yolande Du Bois born in 1900.
1903 Publishes The Souls of Black Folk.
1905-1909 Founder and General Secretary of The Niagara Movement.
1910-1934 Director of Publicity and Research, Member Board of Directors, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
1910-1934 Founder and Editor of The Crisis, monthly magazine of the NAACP.
1919 Calls Pan-African Congress in Paris.
1920 Receives the Spingarn Medal of the NAACP.
1923 Special Ambassador Representing the United States at the inauguration of President King of Liberia.
1934 Resigns from the NAACP.
1934-1944 Returns to Atlanta University as Head, Department of Sociology; publishes Black Reconstruction.
1944-1948 Returns to NAACP as Director of Publicity and Research.
1945 Attends founding conference of the United Nations in San Francisco as representative of the NAACP.
1948 Co-chairman, Council on African Affairs.
1950 Chairman, Peace Information Center in New York City; candidate for U.S. Senate for New York Progressive Party. Wife, Nina Gomer Du Bois, dies and is buried in Great Barrington.
1951 Indictment, trial, and acquittal of subversive activities charges brought against him by the Justice Department; marries Shirley Graham.
1951-1959 Extensive speaking, writing, and international travel; wins Lenin Peace Prize in 1958.
1960 Daughter Yolande Du Bois dies in 1960.
1961 Becomes member of the Communist Party, U.S.A. Invited to Ghana by President Kwame Nkrumah to edit the Encyclopedia Africana.
1963 Becomes citizen of Ghana. Dies on August 27th and is buried with a state funeral in Accra. Du Bois’s death is announced by Roy Wilkins of the NAACP as the March on Washington begins on August 28th.

4 Responses to “Du Bois: A Chronology”

  1. 1
    E.E.W. Clay Says:

    Du Bois accomplised two other works not covered clearly here:

    1) The 1900 Pan-Africanist Conference in London

    2) Won Phd. status in five areas at Harvard:


  2. 2
    C.A.Brown Says:

    you have not included his attendance at 5th Pan African congress meeting in Manchester UK in 1945. This was a critical meeting.

  3. 3
    C.A.Brown Says:

    1945 – WEB DuBOIS attended 5th Pan African conference in Manchester UK.

  4. 4
    Carolyn Cousar Says:

    In 1899 DuBois held his annual conference at Atlanta Univ. The topic for the year was, “The Negro in Business.” DuBois gathered names and information on black businesses thoughout the nation, and created a national database of black businesses. DuBois had an idea for an organization that would allow black business owners to share plans and goals to strenthen their business network. From the information gathered, Booker T. Washington called the initial meeting of the National Negro Business Leaague. Although the foundation for the organization came from DuBdois’ work, he was not given credit by Washington. The National Negro Business League was founded in 1900.

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