August 23

August 23, 1900 – National Negro Business League 

Founded By Booker T. Washington

Booker T Washington portrait

Booker T. Washington

On August 23, 1900,  Booker T. Washington founded the National Negro Business League (NNBL) in Boston, Massachusetts.  The organization received support from Andrew Carnegie. Washington believed the creation of a strong networking organization of African American business leaders could be an impetus for improving the overall social and racial conditions of African Americans in the country.

Frances Benjamin Johnston - Andrew Carnegie and Booker T. Washington - Google Art Project

Booker T. Washington and Andrew Carnegie

Over 300 chapters of NNBL were created across the country consisting of African American small business owners such as physicians, business entrepreneurs, craftsmen and others who had achieved success in creating their own business.

Booker T Washington New Orleans 1915

Booker T. Washington giving a speech in New Orleans, 1915.

The Negro Business League in 1966 changed it’s name to the National Business League and reincorporated in Washington, DC.

(Above) Audio Speech by Booker T. Washington to the Atlanta Cotton States and International Exposition in 1895  (May not be available or visible to some media players)