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Booker T. Washington, W.E.B. Du Bois, Ida B. Wells-Barnett

Booker T. Washington
He was born in Hale’s Ford, Virginia, on April 5, 1856. His mother was a cook for the James Burrough plantation. His father was a man from a farm nearby. After the emancipation proclamation, on January 1, 1863, Booker T. Washington and his mother became free slaves.

At age nine he and his mother moved in with his stepfather in Malden, West Virginia. He than began working in salt and coal mines, he started working at 4 a.m. So he could go to school. His education expanded when he began working as a houseboy for rich white women, who were so astonished by this little black boy’s intelligence that they gave him more books to read. At age 16 Booker T. Washington walked about 500 miles back to Virginia to enroll into the Hampton Institute. Later on, he became an instructor at Hampton then the principal.

He founded the Tuskegee institute in Alabama in 1881. He believed that if black people worked hard enough and “tolerate the subjugation of the black community” that they would gain their rightful place in society. He died at the age 59.

W.E.B. Du Bois

He was born on February 23, 1868 of Great Barrington, Massachusetts. W.E.B Du Bois was a woman of Dutch, Indian, and African decent. His father was a light skinned man who his mother’s family cared nothing for. W.E.B Du Bois was educated all his life he had a pre- school education all the way to a college education and more. His mother was the spine of his education.
When the town voted for two thousand dollars is put to establishing a high school. She believed from that moment on that education was the tool to achieving success. In 1875 his Grandmother died. This caused his family to move again. They had to move in this house close on Railroad Street which wasn’t the good part of Great Barrington. “I had to use my wits to survive living… quite clear to me that education would be my salvation.” Dubois stated.

In 1884 he graduated valedictorian of his high school. He received his bachelors of arts from Fisk University in Nashville Tennessee in 1888. He enrolled in Harvard University as a junior and took bachelors of Arts cum laude in 1890. From 1892 to 1894 he engaged in graduate studies in history and economics at the University of Berlin on a Slater fund fellowship. He served for 2 years as professor of Greek and Latin at Wilberforce University in Ohio.

In 1896 he married Nina Gomer, and they had two children. 1896-1897 Du Bois became assistant instructor in sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. 1909 Du Bois was among the Founders of the NAACP. He believed that for Blacks to get the respect that they deserve in society that they would have to demand it.

Ida B. Wells-Barnett

She was born July 16,1862 in Holly Springs, Mississippi. Her mother was a famous cook and her father was a carpenter. Her father was on the board of trustees for Rust College a freedman school where Ida received a basic education. When she was 16 her mother and father and some of her younger siblings died from yellow fever. She was determined to raise her younger siblings the best she could.

She posed as a woman by putting her hair in an adult style and putting on a long dress and convinced people she was 18 and received a teaching job. A few years later after putting the older children in as apprentices, she moved to Memphis with younger ones and got a teaching job at Fisk University. She was telling the truth in a local newspaper, about the school system, how the school supplies and resources that the African –American children were inferior to the ones the white children. Mrs. Barnett lost her teaching job in 1891. She married to Fredrick Barnett in Chicago Illinois in 1895.
She believed that Blacks will gain their equality through education. She used her writing skills to educate the people all around the country and some of Europe of the way Blacks were being treated in the south.