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 John Steven McGroarty

John Steven McGroarty

Birth
Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 7 Aug 1944 (aged 81)
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Burial Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Plot Section F, Lot 1693
Memorial ID 8998 · View Source
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Poet, Columnist, Author and Congressman. Born at Buck Mountain, in Foster Township, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania. Upon completion of elementary courses in the parochial and public schools of WilkesBarre, John taught for two years. As soon as he was financially solvent, he completed his education at the Harry Hillman Academy. His native talents won for young John a teacher's credential before he had reached his seventeenth birthday. Following his graduation from the Hillman Academy, where he took advanced studies in journalism, John joined the staff of the Wilkes-Barre Evening Leader, and quickly advanced to the managing editorship. He later studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1894 and commenced practice in Wilkes-Barre. He then moved to Montana and was employed in an executive position with the Anaconda Copper Mining Company at Butte and Anaconda from 1896 to 1901. Afterward he moved to Los Angeles, California in 1901 and engaged in journalism. In 1909, he edited a LA Times centenary edition of Lincoln's birth with an introspective on blacks in Los Angeles. He became a "beloved figure in black Los Angeles" for his broad-minded views. John authored numerous books and dramas, one of his best-known works being The Mission Play in 1911, a three-hour pageant describing the California Missions from their founding in 1769 through secularization in 1834, ending with their "final ruin" in 1847. The play opened on April 29, 1912. He also penned California: Its History and Romance in 1911 and Mission Memories in 1929. In his book the California Plutarch, 1935, he detailed the lives and histories of Northern and Southern California's early pioneers such as the Crocker, Carrillo, Van Nuys, Stanford, Avila, Estrada, Sepulveda, Baldwin and Mulholland families. Though his volume California, Its History and Romance went through ten editions in only thirteen years, John was not and never claimed to be a serious historian or an original scholar. In 1923, John and Ida built their home, Rancho Chupa Rosa, in the solitude of the Verdugo Hills. John was designated poet laureate of California by the State legislature in 1933. He was elected to the 74th Congress in January, 1935 to January, 1937, where he played a large factor in introducing the Townsend Bill to the legislature; John was reelected to the 75th Congress January, 1937 to January, 1939, but was not selected as a candidate for renomination in 1938; he was also unsuccessful at securing the Democratic nomination for Secretary of State of California that same year. After his brief stint in politics, he resumed the profession of journalism in Tujunga, California. John died in St. Vincent's Hospital in Los Angeles, California at the age of 81.

Bio by: Shock


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 5 Apr 2000
  • Find A Grave Memorial 8998
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for John Steven McGroarty (20 Aug 1862–7 Aug 1944), Find A Grave Memorial no. 8998, citing Calvary Cemetery, Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .