Feb 21, 2008 - Sale 2137

Sale 2137 - Lot 375

Price Realized: $ 9,600
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 4,000 - $ 6,000
NEGRO CAN DO ANYTHING WASHINGTON, BOOKER T. "It is said that the strongest chain is as strong as its weakest link . . ." Five pages of holograph notes and jottings possibly for a speech or several speeches. Three 4to pages, one written on the back of a sheet of Tuskegee letterhead; and two small 8vo pages; some creases where folded and a closed tear to one of the latter pages. (Tuskegee, ALA) circa 1900-1910

Additional Details

The first page of the 4to pages seems to be a sketch for a speech regarding the plight of the Southern Negro: "In the southern part of our country are 20,000,000 of your brethren who are bound to you and to whom you are bound with an indissoluble cord from [which] you can not separate your selves, if you would." "The highest intelligence in your community is" [the rest crossed out] then ('Aim shall be to reach the lowest') Negro can do anything." The other two pages appear to be talking points, single phrases and words: "Superior race, way to show superiority. Proud of race." The smaller sheets contain similar notes and jottings probably for things he had to do as principal of Tuskegee: "Material Progress, VA and GA, Business League, Negro Conference, new hours, Columbia Heights, 'Camp Meeting,' Negro banks," etc. These notes provide a rare insight into the thinking of Booker T. Washington, a pivotal figure in the transitional period following slavery and Reconstruction.