Sam Ragan

Sam Ragan

About Sam Ragan

Samuel Ragan (December 31, 1915 – May 11, 1996) was an American poet, journalist, author, and arts advocate from North Carolina. Sam Ragan published six collections of verse, including Journey into Morning and To The Water's Edge, two of which were nominated for Pulitzer Prizes, and four works of nonfiction. He served as North Carolina Poet Laureate from 1982 until his death.
Ragan was a recipient of the North Carolina Award in Fine Arts, the John Taylor Caldwell Award for The Humanities, The Roanoke-Chowan Award for Poetry, the R. Hunt Parker Award for Literary Achievement, the Morrison Award and the North Caroliniana Society Award. He was elected to both the North Carolina Journalism Hall of Fame and the North Carolina Literary Hall of Fame. Ragan was awarded honorary doctorates at St. Andrews University in Laurinburg, North Carolina, Atlantic Christian College, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Methodist College, in Fayetteville, North Carolina. In 1982, Governor Jim Hunt named Sam Ragan North Carolina's Poet Laureate for life.
He began writing Southern Accent, a weekly newspaper column of literary criticism, commentary and poetry. It became the longest running column in the United States and appeared in forty-three states and twenty-four foreign countries. In 1969 he purchased The Pilot, a small weekly newspaper in Southern Pines, North Carolina. Ragan served as its editor and publisher, remaining active on The Pilot's staff until his death.

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