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Ann Petry (October 12, 1908April 28, 1997) was an African American author
Ann Lane was born on October 12, 1908 in Old Saybrook, Connecticut as the youngest of three daughters to Peter Clark Lane and Bertha James Lane in Old Saybrook, Connecticut. Her parents belonged to the Black minority of the small town. Her father was a pharmacist and her mother was a shop owner, chiropodist, and hairdresser. Ann and her sister were raised “in the classic New England tradition: a study in efficiency, thrift, and utility (…) They were filled with ambitions that they might not have entertained had they lived in a city along with thousands of poor blacks stuck in demeaning jobs.

The wish to become a professional writer was raised in Ann for the first time in high school when her English teacher read her essay to the class commenting on it with the words: “I honestly believe that you could be a writer if you wanted to.”
The decision to become a pharmacist was her family’s. She enrolled in college and graduated with a Ph.G. degree from Connecticut College of Pharmacy in New Haven in 1931 and worked in the family business for several years. She also began to write short stories while she was working at the pharmacy.
On February 22, 1938, she married George D. Petry of New Iberia, Louisiana. This new commitment brought Petry to New York. She not only write articles for newspapers such as The Amsterdam News, or The People’s Voice, and published short stories in The Crisis, but also worked at an after-school program at P.S. 10 in Harlem. It was during this period of her life that she had realized and personally experienced what the black population of the United States had to go through in their everyday life.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ann_Petry

Ann Petry's first published short story was "On Saturday the Siren Sounds at Noon, which appeared in Crisis. In 1946 Petry's "Like a Winding Sheet" was named Best American short story of 1946.
In 1946 Petry was awarded the Houghton Mifflin Literary Fellowship which allowed her to finish The Street, her first of three novels. Ann Petry has also authored serveral children's books including external image serve?sourceid=10354&is_search=Y&title=Tituba+of+Salem+Village&match=exact&options=andTituba of Salem Village
http://authors.aalbc.com/annpetry.htm