The Magpie, “Anniversary Issue” (Vol. XXII, no. 1, January 1938)

Robert Blackburn American
DeWitt Clinton High School

Not on view

The Magpie, a journal produced by students at the DeWitt Clinton High School in the Bronx, provides a portrait of New York student life during the Great Depression. Using poetry, short stories, and visual art, the students both experimented artistically and provided commentary on a range of topics. A number of the covers were designed by Robert Blackburn (class of 1939), who, through his art studies, had met Harlem-based cultural figures such as Langston Hughes, Richard Wright, Jacob Lawrence, and Augusta Savage; he brought his knowledge and keen eye to The Magpie, eventually serving as its art editor. Other contributors include James Baldwin, Richard Avedon, and Paddy Chayefsky. Despite the students’ youth, many produced sophisticated work that touched on many of the themes, styles, and concerns that would reappear in their more mature production.

The Magpie, “Anniversary Issue” (Vol. XXII, no. 1, January 1938), Robert Blackburn (American, Summit, New Jersey 1920–2003 New York), Journal

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