March 6, 2024

Langston Hughes’ Home Opens to the Public
as House Museum

The long-time home of influential Harlem Renaissance writer Langston Hughes is now open to the public as a historic house museum. The celebrated poet and activist lived in the 19th-century brownstone on East 127th Street in New York for the last 20 years of his life.

Constructed in 1869, the Italianate-style home at 20 East 127th Street consists of three stories. Hughes used the topmost floor as his work room for the last two decades of his life, from 1947 to 1967. It has been on the National Register of Historic Places since 1982 and it was declared a city landmark by the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission in 1981.

One space in the historic dwelling now features personal belongings of Hughes’, including typewriters, never-before-seen photos of him and original articles showcasing his poetry. There are also numerous shelves filled with books of Hughes’ work that visitors can browse, such as Montage of a Dream Deferred (1951), The Weary Blues (1925) and Selected Poems of Langston Hughes (1959).

The grand re-opening event for the Langston Hughes House, held this past June and hosted by Los Angeles-based poet Felicia Cade, involved live musicians playing soul, blues and jazz, and local poets reciting verses of Hughes’ poetry.

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