Born in 1876, Sherwood Anderson grew up in a small town in Ohio—an experience that was the basis of his greatest achievements as a writer. He served in the Spanish-American War, worked as an advertising man, and managed an Ohio paint factory before abandoning both job and family to embark on a literary career in Chicago. His first novel, Windy McPherson’s Son, was published in 1916; his second, Marching Men, a characteristic study of the individual in conflict with industrial society, appeared in 1917. But it is Winesburg, Ohio (1919), with its disillusioned view of small-town lives, that is generally considered his masterpiece. Later novels—Poor White, Many Marriages, and Dark Laughter—continued to depict the spiritual poverty of the machine age. Anderson died in 1941.