Connecting the Past to the Present – Claude McKay – Writer & Poet

Royal Docks
1919

About this record

Political writer and poet Claude McKay was born in Sunnyhill, Jamaica in 1889. In 1919 he migrated to London and worked for the socialist publication Dreadnought, it’s believed he was England’s first black reporter.

McKay documented the lives of soldiers and seafarers from across the globe that were now living and working in East London docks.

He interviewed London dockworkers from Canning Town and their stories would inspire his later novels ‘Home to Harlem’ and ‘Banjo’.

Kingston Jamaica map from Cram's Modern Atlas 1901 (CC)
Claude McKay at Kremlin Crisis December 1923 (CC)
Portrait of Claude McKay c. 1940s (CC)
Profile of Young Claude McKay 1920 (CC)

To explore Trisha McCauley’s whole research journey with photography you can attend her free workshop this Saturday 15 May 2021

And download the Connecting Past to the Present resource by clicking here.

Additional record details

Heritage newsletter

We would like to send you monthly emails spotlighting heritage content in Newham, as well as updates and opportunities to be involved in next year's festival. Be the first to hear about new projects, funding opportunities and ways to be involved.

1 - 31 May 2021