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Booker T. Washington
Born: April 5, 1856 - Franklin County, Virginia
Died: November 14, 1915 - Tuskegee, Alabama

Excerpt from Up From Slavery

n May, 1881, near the close of my first year in teaching the night-school, in a way that I had not dared expect, the opportunity opened for me to begin my life-work. One night in the chapel, after the usual chapel exercises were over, General Armstrong referred to the fact that he had received a letter from some gentlemen in Alabama asking him to recommend some one to take charge of what was to be a normal school for the coloured people in the little town of Tuskegee in that state. These gentlemen seemed to take it for granted that no coloured man suitable for the position could be secured, and they were expecting the General to recommend a white man for the place. The next day General Armstrong sent for me to come to his office, and, much to my surprise, asked me if I thought I could fill the position in Alabama. I told him that I would be willing to try.

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Teaching Topics in Social Studies
Booker T. Washington was born into SLAVERY and was nine when the CIVIL WAR ended. Educated at Hampton Institute, Washington devoted his life
to one of the challenges unfinished by RECONSTRUCTION providing EDUCATION for FREEDMEN as a means toward ECONOMIC SELF-RELIANCE. He promoted a form of RACE RELATIONS some labeled as ACCOMODATION at the expense of POLITICAL AND SOCIAL EQUALITY. He founded the TUSKEGEE INSTITUTE, the premier institution of HIGHER and INDUSTRIAL EDUCATION for blacks, building and maintaining it through a strong political NETWORK, drawing elites such as GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER, who headed the agricultural department.

Teaching Topics in Language Arts
Booker T. Washington's AUTOBIOGRAPHY, Up From Slavery, was compiled by the author from a series of MAGAZINE ARTICLES.
Scavenger Hunt
To whom is Booker T. Washington's autobiography dedicated?
. . . answer . . .
It contains his life story-the NARRATIVE OF THE SELF-MADE MAN-and attempts to PERSUADE others by the example of his own life. In 1881, he founded the Tuskegee Institute, just one of many schools dedicated to promoting LITERACY among freed blacks. A SPEECH, the Atlanta Compromise Address in 1895, marked a turning point in his life and career. Advising his AUDIENCE in a METAPHOR to "cast down your buckets where you are," Washington's point of view about race relations challenged others to respond.

Facts About Booker T. Washington and Up From Slavery
  • The T in Booker T. Washington stands for Taliaferro
  • Up From Slavery begins and ends in Virginia-first detailing his birth there as a slave, and ending with his giving a speech before the city council of Richmond
  • The Tuskegee Institute was originally founded as "Tuskegee Normal School for Colored Teachers"
  • He was the first African American to be celebrated at a dinner at the White House in 1901
  • He worked secretly against Jim Crow laws by writing letters using code names

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