Eugene L. Meyer is an award-winning veteran journalist and author with eclectic interests but special passions for history, lifestyles, travel, real estate and the Chesapeake Bay. He has been widely published in magazines, written three books and was for many years a reporter and editor at the Washington Post. Since leaving the Post in 2004, Meyer has garnered 15 awards for his work and has had more than 60 bylines in The New York Times and written for numerous other national and regional publications. Since 2009, he has also been the editor of the quarterly B’nai B’rith Magazine, which has won several awards under his stewardship. His first journalism job was as Washington bureau librarian for the old New York Herald Tribune, where he got to tag along with a White House reporter and watch the 1964 Civil Rights Act being signed into law.
His most recent book, FIVE FOR FREEDOM: The African American Soldiers in John Brown’s Army, was named Outstanding Biography/History Book by the American Society of Journalists and Authors in 2019. Prior to that, his Chesapeake Country, an appealing coffee table book first published in 1990, enjoyed five printings selling more than 32,000 copies, and was republished in an updated Second Edition in March 2015. His seminal Maryland Lost and Found, first published in 1986, won praise from acclaimed novelist Anne Tyler, who reviewed it in Washington Post Book World, declaring “:What wonderful voices!” Two updated paperback editions followed, in 2000 and 2003, and the book is still in print.
Much of Meyer’s writing is closely tied to his love of history. He also seeks to provide readers with a sense of place about where they live, work or travel. He likes back roads and forgotten places but also finds satisfaction in writing about dynamic changes in cities in suburbs. Over his long career, he has interviewed country music phenomenon Charlie Pride, former Weather Underground member Bernardine Dohrn and U.S. Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, covered antiwar protests from inside and out, spent Jimmy Carter’s last presidential Christmas in Plains, Ga., covered two state legislatures and the release of the Iranian hostages in 1981, gone crabbing and oystering with Maryland watermen, and written newspaper series on subjects ranging from urban renewal and farm preservation to the Chesapeake Bay to a suburban police “death squad.” Oh, and he also interviewed the Beatles in their dressing room — the calm eye in the middle of a hurricane — prior to their Philadelphia rock concert on Aug. 17, 1966. He has the clips to prove it!