Roth, Henry(1906– ) writer; born in Tysmenica, Austria-Hungary. His family moved to New York City when he was an infant, and after graduating from the City College of New York (B.S. 1928), he began writing while holding a variety of jobs in New York. In 1934 he published Call It Sleep, his semiautobiographical novel about an immigrant Jewish boy; the novel was relatively unnoticed at the time and Roth went on teaching, and during World War II, worked as a precision metal grinder. In 1945 he moved to Maine and took up raising chickens; in his late years he moved to Albuquerque, N.M. Call It Sleep was reissued in 1960 and hailed a minor classic. Although his only other published works were short magazine pieces and his memoirs, Nature's First Green (1978), he is said to have destroyed his second novel and started a third.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.