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January 7, 1891 Born in Notasulga, Alabama, the fifth of eight children, to John Hurston, a carpenter and Baptist preacher, and Lucy Potts Hurston, a former schoolteacher.
September 1917 - June 1918 Attends Morgan Academy in Baltimore, completing the high school requirements.
Summer 1918 Works as a waitress in a nightclub and a manicurist in a black-owned barbershop that only serves whites.
1918 - 1919 Attends Howard Prep School, Washington, D.C.
1919 - 1924 Attends Howard University; receives an associate degree in 1920.
1921 Publishes her first story, "John Redding Goes to Sea," in Stylus, the campus literary society's magazine.
December 1924 Publishes "Drenched in Light," a short story, in Opportunity.
1925 Submits a story, "Spunk," and a play, Color Struck, to Opportunity's literary contest. Both win second-place award; publishes "Spunk" in the June number.
1925 - 1927 Attends Barnard College, studying anthropology with Franz Boas.
1926 Begins field work for Boas in Harlem.
January 1926 Publishes "John Redding Goes to Sea" in Opportunity.
Summer 1926 Organizes Fire! With Langston Hughes and Wallace Thurman; they publish only one issue, in November 1926. The issue includes Hurston's "Sweat."
August 1926 Publishes "Muttsy" in Opportunity.
September 1926 Publishes "Possum or Pig" in the Forum.
September - November 1926 Publishes "The Eatonville Anthology" in the Messenger.
1927 Publishes The First One, a play, in Charles S. Johnson's Ebony and Topaz.
February 1927 Goes to Florida to collect folklore.
May 19,1927 Marries Herbert Sheen.
September 1927 First visits Mrs. Rufus Osgood Mason, seeking patronage.
October 1927 Publishes an account of the black settlement at St. Augustine, Florida, in the Journal of Negro History; also in this issue: "Cudjo's Own Story of the Last African Slaver."
December 1927 Signs a contract with Mason, enabling her to return to the South to collect folklore.
1928 Satirized as "Sweetie Mae Carr" in Wallace Thurman's novel about the Harlem Renaissance Infants of the Spring; receives a bachelor of arts degree from Barnard.
January 1928 Relations with Sheen break off.
May 1928 Publishes "How It Feels to be Colored Me" in The World Tomorrow.
1930 - 1932 Organizes the field notes that become Mules and Men.
May - June 1930 Works on the play Mule Bone with Langston Hughes.
1931 Publishes "Hoodoo in America" in the Journal of American Folklore.
February 1931 Breaks with Langston Hughes over the authorship of Mule Bone.
July 7,1931 Divorces Sheen.
September 1931 Writes for a theatrical revue called Fast and Furious.
January 1932 Writes and stages a theatrical revue called The Great Day, first performed on January 10 on Broadway at the John Golden Theatre; works with the creative literature department of Rollins College, Winter Park, Florida, to produce a concert program of Negro music.
1933 Writes "The Fiery Chariot."
January 1933 Stages From Sun to Sun (a version of Great Day) at Rollins College.
August 1933 Publishes "The Gilded Six-Bits" in Story.
1934 Publishes six essays in Nancy Cunard's anthology, Negro.
January 1934 Goes to Bethune-Cookman College to establish a school of dramatic arts "based on pure Negro expression."
May 1934 Publishes Jonah's Gourd Vine, originally titled Big Nigger; it is a Book-of-the-Month Club selection.
September 1934 Publishes "The Fire and the Cloud" in the Challenge.
November 1934 Singing Steel (a version of Great Day) performed in Chicago.
January 1935 Begins to study for a Ph.D in anthropology at Columbia University on a fellowship from the Rosenwald Foundation.
August 1935 Joins the WPA Federal Theater Project as a "dramatic coach."
October 1935 Mules and Men published.
March 1936 Awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship to study West Indian obeah practices.
April - September 1936 In Jamaica.
September - March 1937 In Haiti; writes Their Eyes Were Watching God in seven weeks.
May 1937 Returns to Haiti on a renewed Guggenheim.
September 1937 Returns to the United States; Their Eyes Were Watching God published, September 18.
February - March 1938 Writes Tell My Horse; it is published the same year.
April 1939 Joins the Federal Writers Project in Florida to work on The Florida Negro.
1939 Publishes "Now Take Noses" in Cordially Yours.
June 1939 Receives an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Morgan State college.
Summer 1939 Hired at a drama instructor by North Carolina College for Negroes at Durham; meets Paul Green, professor of drama, at the University of North Carolina.
November 1939 Moses, Man of the Mountain published.
February 1940 Files for divorce from Price, though the two are reconciled briefly.
Summer 1940 Makes a folklore-collecting trip to South Carolina.
Spring - July 1941 Writes Dust Tracks on a Road.
July 1941 Publishes "Cock Robin, Beale Street" in the Southern Literary Messenger.
October 1941-January 1942 Works as a story consultant at Paramount Pictures.
July 1942 Publishes "Story in Harlem Slang" in the American Mercury.
September 5, 1942 Publishes a profile of Lawrence Silas in the Saturday Evening Post.
November 1942 Dust Tracks on a Road published.
February 1943 Awarded the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award in Race Relations for Dust Tracks; on the cover of the Saturday Review.
March 1943 Receives Howard University's Distinguished Alumni Award.
May 1943 Publishes "The 'Pet Negro' Syndrome" in the American Mercury.
November 1943 Divorce from Price granted.
June 1944 Publishes "My Most Humiliating Jim Crow Experience" in the Negro Digest.
1945 Writes Mrs. Doctor; it is rejected by Lippincott.
March 1945 Publishes "The Rise of the Begging Joints" in the American Mercury.
December 1945 Publishes "Crazy for This Democracy" in the Negro Digest.
1947 Publishes a review of Robert Tallant's Voodoo in New Orleans in the Journal of American Folklore.
May 1947 Goes to British Honduras to research black communities in Central America; writes Seraph on the Suwanee; stays in Honduras until March 1948.
October 1948 Seraph on the Suwanee published.
March 1950 Publishes "Conscience of the Court" in the Saturday Evening Post, while working as a maid in Rivo Island, Florida.
April 1950 Publishes "What White Publishers Won't Print" in the Saturday Evening Post.
November 1950 Publishes "I Saw Negro Votes Peddled" in the American Legion magazine.
Winter 1950 - 1951 Moves to Belle Glade, Florida.
June 1951 Publishes "Why the Negro Won't Buy Communism" in the American Legion magazine.
December 8, 1951 Publishes "A Negro Voter Sizes up Taft" in the Saturday Evening Post.
1952 Hired by the Pittsburgh Courier to cover the Ruby McCollum case.
May 1956 Receives an award for "education and human relations" at Bethune-Cookman College.
June 1956 Works as a librarian at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida.
1957 - 1959 Writes a column on "Hoodoo and Black Magic" for the Fort Pierce Chronicle.
1958 Works as a substitute teacher at Lincoln Park Academy, Fort Pierce.
Early 1959 Suffers a stroke.
October 1959 Forced to enter the St. Lucie County Welfare Home.
January 28, 1960 Dies in the St. Lucie County Welfare Home of "hypertensive heart disease"; buried in an unmarked grave in the Garden of Heavenly Rest, Fort Pierce.
August 1973 Alice Walker discovers and marks Hurston's grave.
March 1975 Walker publishes "In Search of Zora Neale Hurston," in Ms., launching a Hurston revival.

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