African-American writer, sociologist, Civil Rights activist, and advocate of Pan-Africanism. His most famous non-fiction works include The Souls of Black Folk (1903) and Black Reconstruction in America (1935).
When he graduated from high school, his childhood church collected money to support the cost of his college tuition. He subsequently attended Fisk University and, later, Harvard University, and went on to become both a professor at Atlanta University and a leader of the Niagara Movement.
He was the first African American to receive a doctorate from Harvard University.
He was born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts to Alfred and Mary Silvina Du Bois. In 1896, he married Nina Gomer, with whom he had a son (who died as a baby) and a daughter. Following his first wife's death, he wed playwright and activist, Shirley Graham.
Dubois and Benjamin Tucker were both famous Massachusetts-born authors.