Booker T Washington was an American educator, orator, author and the dominant leader of the African-American community nationwide from the 1890s to his death. Washington was born slave. After the Civil War he became head of Tuskegee Institute, then a teachers' college for blacks. His "Atlanta Exposition" speech of 1895 appealed to middle class whites across the South, asking them to give blacks a chance to work and develop separately, while implicitly promising not to demand the vote. Washington united blacks across the nation but his work fell apart after his death. Washington fought hard for the education of blacks. He felt strongly that corporation was the best way to work with whites for the betterment of the black race.
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