The Washington papers continue to garner critical acclaim as a major publishing enterprise in Black and American historiography. Throughout their corpus, they reveal the private world of black Americans in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and provide vivid personal perspectives on interracial relations during the "age of accommodation."
Between 1909 and 191, Booker T. Washington remained the most powerful figure in black America. His dominance, however, did not go unchallenged. Both the newly inaugurated President William Howard Taft and the newly founded National Association for the Advancement of Colored People were at odds with Washington. In addition, his influence was further strained by the spread of race riots, lynchings, and laws discriminatory toward blacks.
Still, Washington continued his efforts to promote better race relations and improve black educational and economic opportunity. On speaking tours in the South, he drew large enthusiastic crowds of both races who were captivated by his charismatic intelligence and style. He also remained very much involved with the daily life and administration of Tuskegee - among other things, redefining George Washington Carver's duties at the institute. This period alo saw his continued work on My Larger Education (1911), a sequel to Up from Slaver, and The Man Farthest Down (1912), a study of the working classes in Europe.