Tuskegee Institute, Macon County

Perhaps the best-known African-American university in the country, Tuskegee was founded in 1881 by Booker T. Washington (1856-1915), a man who had been born and reared a slave. With a curriculum designed to provide industrial and vocational education for African-Americans, Tuskegee became the core and symbol of its founder's efforts to ameliorate the economic conditions of the African-American and improve his way of life. Tuskegee is most noted for its contributions in the field of agricultural research; in 1896, Dr. George Washington Carver (1864-1943) became head of its Agriculture Department.