During the late 19th century and early 20th century emancipation of slaves and the freedom of African-Americans was a pressing issue. There are two prominent different proposed means of solutions presented at the time. Booker T. Washington presented one, he believed that slaves should not take violent action to gain freedom. W.E.B. Du Bois presented the other, he believed that African-Americans should demand their freedom and should try to achieve it by using any means possible. Booker T. Washington and W.E.D. Du Bois offered different strategies, all of which were appropriate in the historical context of 1877-1915.
Booker T. Washington thought that African-Americans should not use violence when gaining their freedom and dealing with problems of poverty. By the 1920's the percentage of African-Americans enrolled in school between the ages of 5 and 19 had doubled from that of 1860. (Doc A) This statistic shows Booker T. Washington's method of gaining freedom because of in the increased rate of education of African-Americans with violence. T. Thomas Fortune, a black activist and newspaper editor went to Tuskegee and recalled his time there. He discovered that in that town of 1000 acres of land there are 400 colored, 28 of which are teachers male and female all because of the Booker T. Washington's hard work to gain African-Americans freedom. (Doc G) Illiteracy of African-Americans began to decrease from the year 1890 to the year 1910. (Doc B) This just shows that more African-Americans became literate and became one step closer to gaining their freedom. All of these ways show how passive reform helped African-Americans slowly gain their freedom and pried themselves out of the clutches of poverty. .
W.E.B. Du Bois was precocious individual who believed that fighting for their freedom was necessary for African-Americans. Lynching of African-American people from the year 1882-1915 increased then began to decrease then increased again.