Booker T. Washington

Booker T. Washington 1856-1915
Birthplace: Franklin County, VA
Graduate of Hampton University, 1875

After the Civil War, Washington worked in salt furnaces and coal mines and attended school part time, until he was able to enter the Hampton Institute in Virginia. After three years at Hampton (1872-75), he instructed, developed, and ran other schools and universities. Under his direction, Tuskegee Institute became one of the leading African-American educational institutions in America. Washington believed that it was foolish for blacks to fight for social equality before they obtained economic equality. Washington organized the National Negro Business League (1900), a group committed to Black economic independence. He received honorary degrees from Dartmouth and Harvard. His published works include his autobiography, Up from Slavery (1901, repr. 1963), The Future of the American Negro (1899), Tuskegee and Its People (1905, repr. 1969), Life of Frederick Douglass (1907, repr. 1968), The Story of the Negro (1909, repr. 1969), and My Larger Education (1911).

Related Resources

Web Resources
Booker T. National Monument
The National Park Services site concerning Washington's home.

Today in History
Library of Congress page about Washington.

Black History Month  Return to the Encyclopedia
of Prominent African Americans

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