Playwright and founder of an experimental theatre, librarian, historian, and instrumental in the Harlem Renaissance — Regina Anderson Andrews was more than pioneer — she was dynamo whose name should be cherished by all who love the arts and the history of New York City.


First African American to lead a New York Public Library Branch

Founded the “Harlem West Side Literary Salon” (580 Saint Nicholas Avenue), which became a gathering place for local artists and authors….

Helped launch the legendary Harlem Renaissance in 1924 by organizing a dinner at the Civic Club, attended by such notable authors as W.E.B. DuBois, Jean Toomer, Countee Cullen and Langston Hughes…

Co-founded the Harlem Experimental theatre with W.E.B. Dubois… which in 1931 produced her one act plays — Climbing Jacob’s Ladder (about a lynching) and Underground (about the Underground Railroad)

Regina Anderson Andrews was one of 10 African-American women whose contributions were recognized at the 1939 World’s Fair….

Regina Andrews was playwright, activist, historian, salon doyenne and a librarian who believed that “the use of books is our strongest means of promoting intercultural understanding”.

Tune in next Wednesday for another NYLI blog celebrating Black History month… and check out this book to learn more about Regina Andrews…