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Du Bois and Washington on Woman Suffrage

Document 3

In 1912, Washington Gladden, an influential white minister from Columbus, Ohio and an ally of W. E. B. Du Bois, supported the inclusion of woman suffrage in Ohio's new state constitution. He used the occasion to ask Booker T. Washington to state his position on woman suffrage. Washington replied:

My Dear Mr. Gladden:

       I think you have expressed my own attitude very fully in your own letter. I have moved rather slowly in this matter, but I think if you care to make any statement regarding my own position, it should be to the effect that I am in favor of woman suffrage. I do not believe that any harm can be done, and I think on the other hand that much good might be accomplished. While I take this position I also feel that there are many other questions of far greater importance before the country for immediate attention than this, but perhaps when we can get this question settled we will then be in a position to move on in the direction of settling some others which are more fundamental.

Booker T. Washington

-- Excerpt from a letter from Booker T. Washington to Washington Gladden,
Tuskegee, Alabama, 30 July 1912

4. Why did Washington say he supported woman suffrage?

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5. How strongly do you think Washington supported suffrage for women?

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To Document 4

 

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