- Birth name:
- Francis McCourt
- Date of Birth:
- 19 July 1930 Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA
Frank McCourt was born August 19, 1930, in Brooklyn, New York, to Irish immigrant parents; grew up in Limerick, Ireland; and, at the age of 19, returned to the United States. Surviving initially through a string of casual jobs, spending every spare minute reading books from the public library, Frank began a process of self-education and improvement that eventually led to a career as a high-school teacher. For 27 years, he taught in various New York City public schools, the last seventeen of which were spent at Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan.After retiring from teaching, Frank and his brother Malachy McCourt performed a two-man show titled "A Couple of Blackguards," a musical review about their Irish youth. Then, in his 60s, McCourt sat down and began writing about his past. The tales of his childhood that he had told many times to his classes at school and in the bars of New York soon took shape as the highly acclaimed memoir Angela's Ashes (1999). Published initially in the United States, it went straight into the bestseller lists and then crossed the Atlantic to take the bookshops by storm in Ireland, in the rest of Europe, and around the world."Angela's Ashes" went on to win, in the US alone, the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Critics Circle Award, and the LA Times Award. His second book, about his life in the US after he moved from Ireland, is called "'Tis." A third volume, "Teacher Man," appeared soon afterward. Frank McCourt lived with his wife Ellen in New York City and Connecticut.