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Booker T Washington-The Great Accommodator Booker T Washington was born Booker Taliafero on April 5th 1856 He was a Mulatto slave He and his mother were slaves to James Burroughs a farmer in Virginia When his mother married another slave Washington Ferguson Booker took the name Booker T Washington when he entered school The Emancipation Proclamation which was issued on September 22nd 1862 but was not passed until the Civil War ended in 1865 gave Booker the opportunity to attend school at the Hampton Institute in Virginia Unfortunately at the time Booker could not pay for the school yet he showed up with the hope of still attending General Samuel Chapman Armstrong a commander of African-American troops in the Civil War arranged for Washingtons tuition to be paid for by a wealthy white man Washington graduated in 1875 and was asked to return in 1879 as a teacher by Gen Armstrong In 1881 Gen Armstrong recommended Washington as principal of the Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee Alabama The school came to be world famous and was funded by right white northerners such as Andrew Carnegie and John D Rockefeller Washingtons non-threatening racial views impressed many who saw him on his speaking tours and soliciting donations Washington earned many honors throughout his life such as being the first African-American ever to dine at the White House with the president whom he was an advisor to which was Theodore Roosevelt at the time Roosevelt received such bad press from the situation that Washington was never asked back although he was still continually asked advice by the president Washington also wrote a best selling book entitled Up From Slavery which was his autobiography Although Washingtons leadership in the black community declined he was the first to represent the idea of going out and making a difference in their communities instead of letting the change come upon the newly-freed slaves Washington passed away on November 14th 1915 after suffering
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