Cast Down Your Bucket

“Racial Battles are to be won by marching forward, not by holding back.”

Booker T. Washington

After the Civil War, this country adopted the 13th, 14th and 15th Constitutional amendments, which provided the right to vote and other citizenship rights to African American men.

Efforts to take away these new liberties began as the Reconstruction Era ended. A leader in the post-Reconstruction era, Booker T. Washington was the most prominent voice for African Americans at a time when equality was only a dream. Washington urged our nation to “Cast down your bucket” into the waters of equality and liberty for all.

During their visit to Booker T. Washington National Monument, students explore the Southern plight from the end of the American Civil War through the turn of the 20th-century as African Americans struggled, fought and even died for the right to vote. Students analyze the politics and commercial industries of the South, examine the speeches and papers of Washington and other leaders of the era and debate the economic and social philosophy of Booker T. Washington. While analyzing, describing and discussing the climate of the post-Reconstruction South, students discover that drive and determination can change a nation.


Last updated: February 26, 2015

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

12130 Booker T. Washington Highway
Hardy, VA 24101


(540) 721-2094

Contact Us