Booker Taliaferro Washington (April 5, 1856 – November 14, 1915) was an African-American educator, author, orator, and advisor to presidents of the United States. Between 1890 and 1915, Washington was the dominant leader in the African-American community. Washington was of the last generation of black American leaders born into slavery and became the leading voice of the former slaves and their descendants, who were newly oppressed by disfranchisement and the Jim Crow discriminatory laws enacted in the post-Reconstruction Southern states in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. In 1895 his Atlanta compromise called for avoiding confrontation over segregation and instead putting more reliance on long-term educational and economic advancement in the black community. (Click here for full Wikipedia article)
Character, not circumstances, makes the man.
Excellence is to do a common thing in an uncommon way.
Few things can help an individual more than to place responsibility on him, and to let him know that you trust him.
I learned the lesson that great men cultivate love, and that only little men cherish a spirit of hatred. I learned that assistance given to the weak makes the one who gives it strong; and that oppression of the unfortunate makes one weak.
I think I have learned that the best way to lift one's self up is to help someone else.
I would permit no man, no matter what his color might be, to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him.
In any country, regardless of what its laws say, wherever people act upon the idea that the disadvantage of one man is the good of another, there slavery exists. Wherever, in any country the whole people feel that the happiness of all is dependent upon the happiness of the weakest, there freedom exists.
Men may make laws to hinder and fetter the ballot, but men cannot make laws that will bind or retard the growth of manhood.
No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in writing a poem.
Of all forms of slavery there is none that is so harmful and degrading as that form of slavery which tempts one human being to hate another by reason of his race or color. One man cannot hold another man down in the ditch without remaining down in the ditch with him.
Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which one has overcome while trying to succeed.
The world cares very little what you or I know, but it does care a great deal about what you or I do.
You can't hold a man down without staying down with him.
Wherever, in any country the whole people feel that the happiness of all is dependent upon the happiness of the weakest, there freedom exists.
Progress, progress is the law of nature; under God it shall be our eternal guiding star.
There is no power on earth, that can neutralize the influence of a high, pure, simple and useful life.
There are two ways of exerting one's strength: one is pushing down, the other is pulling up.
I have learned that success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.
Nothing ever comes to me, that is worth having, except as the result of hard work.