Glenn S. McBrayer was born about 1884, probably in South Carolina, to Randall and Sylvia McBrayer. He was reared near Shelby, in western North Carolina, and appears in Cleveland County in the 1900 census. Ten years later, he was listed as a 23 year-old farm laborer, but he was soon to make life-changing moves. Sometime during the decade he obtained a degree from Howard University. In January 1917, he married Lillie Brown in Zebulon, Nash County. Shortly after, he passed the North Carolina bar.
The Crisis, April 1917, page 293.
In 1920, however, the McBrayers were in Wilson, and, according to the census, Glenn was working a retail grocery merchant. Sometime during the next year, he hung out his shingle and got himself elected corresponding secretary of the Negro State Bar Association. In the 1922 Wilson city directory, his occupation is clearly noted:
He appears in Wilson directories throughout the 1920s, but seems to have left Wilson after 1930. In 1934, Glenn and Lillian McBrayer are listed in the city directory of Buffalo, New York. His occupation is given as salesman.