|Timeline of Woody Guthrie (1912-1967)|
|1960 and beyond|
|1912||July 14||Born in Okemah, Oklahoma.||
Photograph by Walter Smalling, October 1979.
Historic American Buildings Survey, Prints and Photographs Division. Call Number: HABS, OKLA, 54-OKE.V, 1-2.
|1919||May||Death of older sister, Clara, in fire.|
|1927||Mother sent to Central State Hospital for the Insane in Norman, Oklahoma.|
|1929||Joined father and extended family in Pampa, Texas; focused on learning to play guitar and harmonica.|
|1930||Death of mother.|
|1933||Married Mary Jennings, Pampa, Texas (later divorced).||
Migrants' tents are a common sight along the right of way of the southern pacific. Near Fresno, California.
Photograph by Dorothea Lange, February 1939.
Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection, Prints and Photographs Division. Reproduction Number: LC-USF34-019044-C
|1935||Prepared typed songbook of original songs, "Alonzo M. Zilch's Own Collection of Original Songs and Ballads."|
|April||Began to compose songs about the Dust Bowl following the Great Dust Storm.|
|1937||Moved to Los Angeles, California; began performing on radio station KFVD.|
|1938||Summer||Traveled to investigate the living and working conditions of the migrant workers on assignment for The Light newspaper; wrote "Dust Bowl Refugees."|
|1939||Began writing "Woody Sez" column in People's World.|
|Met actor Will Geer and began traveling with him to migrant camps to perform.|
|1940||January-February||Moved to New York City; wrote "This Land Is Your Land" in reaction to Irving Berlin's "God Bless America."||
Elevated structure and buildings. Lower Manhattan. Photograph by Arthur Rothstein, December 1941.
Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection, Prints and Photographs Division. Reproduction Number: LC-USF34-024346-D.
|March||Performed at "Grapes of Wrath Evening," organized by Will Geer to benefit the John Steinbeck Committee for Agricultural Workers; met Alan and Elizabeth Lomax, director Nicholas Ray, and folk singers Aunt Molly Jackson, Leadbelly, and Pete Seeger.|
|Recorded four hours of songs and stories for the Library of Congress's Archive of American Folk Song in the Department of the Interior recording lab.|
|Began to write autobiographical novel, Bound for Glory.|
|Spring-Summer||Began to appear on CBS radio programs.|
|Recorded Dust Bowl Ballads for Victor Records in Camden, New Jersey (released in July).|
|1941||May||Commissioned by the U.S. Department of the Interior to write songs promoting the building of the Bonneville Dam on the Columbia River in Washington state; composed twenty-six songs in thirty days.|
|Summer||Joined the Almanac Singers in New York for cross-country summer tour; recorded Deep Sea Chanteys and Whaling Ballads and Sod-buster Ballads with the Almanacs for General Records.|
|Fall||Moved to Greenwich Village, living and performing with the Almanac Singers.|
|December||In the wake of Pearl Harbor, began writing pro-war songs with the Almanac Singers.|
|1942||Spring||Narrated and played music for Folksay modern dance, choreographed by Sophie Maslow and featuring Marjorie Mazia as a dancer.|
|Signed contract with E. P. Dutton publishing house for book.|
|Began dating Marjorie Mazia.|
|1943||March||Bound for Glory published (New York: E. P. Dutton & Co., Inc.).|
|June||Joined the Merchant Marine; shipped out on first of three voyages with Cisco Houston and Jimmy Longhi.|
|November||Returned to New York; moved to 3520 Mermaid Avenue, Coney Island.|
|1944||April||Met Moses (Moe) Asch and began to record in his studio in New York: the first recording of "This Land Is Your Land" and well over one hundred other songs.|
|1945||March||Released album of recordings made for Moe Asch through collaboration with Herbert Harris's Stinson Trading Company.|
|May||Inducted into the Army.|
|November||Married Marjorie in New York while on furlough (divorced July 1953).|
|December||Discharged from the Army.|
|1946||Began writing children's songs and recording them for Moe Asch's label.|
|Named to the board of directors of the newly formed People's Songs collective.|
|1947||February||Death of his and Marjorie's daughter Cathy Ann in fire.|
|1950||The Weavers (Ronnie Gilbert, Lee Hays, Fred Hellerman, and Pete Seeger) recorded Guthrie's "So Long, It's Been Good to Know You."|
|Music publisher Howie Richmond offered to publish and promote more of Guthrie's songs.|
|1952||September||Diagnosed with Huntington's Chorea.|
|October||Moved to Topanga Canyon, California; met Anneke Van Kirk Marshall.||
[Woody Guthrie, half-length portrait, facing front, playing guitar].
New York World Telegram and Sun Collection, Prints and Photographs Division. Reproduction Number: LC-USZ62-120588.
|1953||December||Married Anneke Van Kirk (divorced summer 1956); returned to New York.|
|1954||April||Pete Seeger began touring college campuses, introducing Guthrie's songs to new audiences.|
|September||Checked into Brooklyn State Hospital.|
|1956||Launch of Guthrie Children's Trust Fund: Pete Seeger, Harold Leventhal, and Lou Gordon served as trustees overseeing Woody's estate, with Arlo, Joady, and Nora (Woody and Marjorie's children) as beneficiaries.|
|March||Benefit concert for Guthrie Children's Trust Fund held at Pythian Hall in New York.|
|May||Voluntarily checked out of Brooklyn State Hospital.|
|Involuntarily checked into Greystone Park in Morris Plains, New Jersey.|
|1958||Kingston Trio scored popular success with folk ballad "Tom Dooley," signaling the beginning of an urban folk revival.|
|1959||Bob and Sidsel Gleason began hosting Guthrie in their home in East Orange, New Jersey, every Sunday; folksingers gathered to play and pay homage.|
|1960 and beyond|
|1961||January||Visited by Bob Dylan.|
|Spring||Transferred to Brooklyn State Hospital.|
|1964||Release of 1940 Library of Congress recordings as three-record set on Elektra (New York: EKL-271/272).|
|1965||Publication of Born to Win, a collection of writings (New York: Macmillan).|
|1966||April||Commended by U.S. Department of the Interior for Columbia River songs, presented with Conservation Service Award, and honored by having substation of Bonneville Power Authority named for him.||
[Construction of Washington Shore Fish Ladder at downstream end of Bonneville Dam.]
1 May 1937.
Historic American Buildings Survey, Prints and Photographs Division. Call Number: HABS, ORE,26-BONV, 2-F-90.
|1967||Committee to Combat Huntington's Disease (CCHD) formed by Marjorie Guthrie.|
|October 3||Died, Brooklyn State Hospital, New York.|
|1971||Posthumously inducted into Songwriters' Hall of Fame.|
|1977||Posthumously inducted into Nashville Songwriters Foundation, Inc.|
|1988||Posthumously inducted into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.|
|1996||Posthumously awarded Lifetime Achievement Award by North American Folk Music and Dance Alliance.|