Jorge (George) Godoy, Early Mexican American Poet

Jorge (George) Godoy, Early Mexican American Poet

a work in progress


George, also known as Jorge, Godoy, was born in San Francisco on February 22 of either 1891 or 1892, depending on whether you believe his World War I draft card or his entry in Who's Who in America.

His parents were José Francisco Godoy and Adela Perrin, both natives of Mexico. His was a literary and diplomatic family. His grandfather was a Mexican newspaper editor and later the Mexican consul in San Franciso. His grandmother, a native of Louisiana, was California's official state translator in the 1870s and wrote under the pen name "Americana." His aunt was an actress who translated a novel from Spanish into English. One of his brothers wrote plays. A sister published a childhood memoir in 1919.

Godoy's first pubished work may have appeared, along with a large photo, in the July 12, 1908, issue of the Washington Post. The newspaper printed two poems, "The Unfortunate Lover" and "I Saw Her", and a short story, "Love or Country."

Godoy published poems regularly in the New York Herald, first as a contributor to the paper's World War One sock-poem promotion, and then regularly after the war ended. He also wrote articles on US-Mexico issues for the Washington Post.

While George Godoy was definitely a minor poet, his first two books precede Tropical Town and Other Poems by Salomon de la Selva (1918), which is frequently cited as the first book of English-language poetry from a US Hispanic writer.

 Cover of Short Poems by George Godoy

Books by George Godoy

Short Poems. Washington, DC: Press of Sudwarth Printing Co., 1909 [Digital version]

Smiling Sobbing Sonnets by Jorge Godoy. Washington, DC: National Capital Press, 1914 [Digital version]

Uncle Sam and His Latin American Nieces, 1920. (Announced by not published?)

Lindberg in Mexico: December 1927 by Jorge Godoy. Mexico City: Hotel Regis, 1928

The Mexican Lindy or Spirit of Caranza (listed in Godoy's Rhythmical Reader)

Godoy's Rhythmical Reader: Thirty-one Lessons. Mexico City: (the author), 1928

Brief History of Mexico City and Suburbs by Alfonso M. Ramírez and Jorge Godoy. México: (the authors), 1930

Poetic Mexico: Poems. México: (the author). 1938

Quien es quien en el frontón. México: Imp. Monterrubio, 1946. Rhyming verse (in Spanish) about noted handball and jai alai players.

 Cover of Smiling Sobbing Sonnets by Jorge (George) Godoy

Edited by George Godoy

Poetas inglesas by Jorge Godoy. México: Secretaría de Educación Pública, 1946

El cuento americano by Jorge Godoy. México: Secretaría de Educación Pública, 1947


Translated by George Godoy

Colonial Mexico by  Francisco González Montero and Ignacio González Hermosilla; translated into English by George Godoy. Mexico City: Arte Mexicana, 1933

Fiesta en Tasco by Raquel Bevilacqua Wuthenau. México : Editorial Fotocolor, 1942. A bilingual children's book, with the English translation by George Godoy.

Ensueños by Reina Danciger, translated into Spanish by George Godoy. (N.-pl.): (n.p.), 1946. A posthumous Spanish edition of Day Dreams. Reina Danciger (née Guerra) was probably a Latina. She died in 1943. Her husband, Jack Danciger, was a Texas oil man. Their daughter, Ruth Dancinger Guerra de Soler, died in a car accident in Cuba in 1955.