Biography of Ida B. Wells coming out in 2021, publisher says

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FILE – In this Dec. 2, 2011 file photo, Michelle Duster, great-granddaughter of civil rights pioneer Ida B. Wells who led a crusade against lynching during the early 20th century, holds a portrait of Wells in her home in Chicago’s South Side. Duster’s biography of the pioneering African-American journalist and activist, “Ida B. the Queen” will come out next February. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — The great-granddaughter of Ida B. Wells is writing a biography of the pioneering African-American journalist and activist.

One Signal Publishers announced Thursday that Michelle Duster’s “Ida B. the Queen” will come out next February. Duster will collaborate on the book with Atlantic staff writer Hannah Giorgis.

Duster is an author and educator who has spoken often about the legacy of Wells and previously worked on the books “Ida from Abroad” and “Ida In Her Own Words.” Earlier this month, Wells was honored with a posthumous Pulitzer Prize, noting “her outstanding and courageous reporting” on lynchings.

Wells was a journalist and publisher in the late 1800s and early 1900s and later helped found civil rights and women’s suffrage groups. Ida B. Wells-Barnett died in 1931.

“After working on various projects for over 30 years, it is exciting to finally see my great-grandmother’s sacrifice and legacy be fully recognized,” Duster said in a statement. “Ida’s life is well-known in some communities, but ‘Ida B. the Queen’ will introduce her to a wider and different audience. I hope her story will inspire people to live their own truths as Ida did.”

One Signal is an imprint of Simon & Schuster.

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