“The central purpose of Booker T. Washington’s life and work was to liberate souls from enslavement to ignorance, prejudice, and degrading passions, the kind of slavery that makes us tyrants to those around us in the world we live in.”


Booker T. Washington was born a slave in Franklin County Virginia just a few years before the Civil War began. With heroic determination, he got himself an education and went on to found the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute in Alabama, where he remained principal for the rest of his life. By the time Frederick Douglass died in 1895, Washington was with no comparison the most well-known and influential black American living.