Up From Slavery

Washington’s mother, who remains nameless in the narrative, is credited for her devotion to her family and her support of Washington’s educational aspirations during and after slavery. Washington’s mother was born into slavery and moved the family to West Virginia after Emancipation. She was in relatively poor health, and she died after Washington’s second year at the Hampton Institute. It is Washington’s mother who acquires his first book for him, and also who sews him a homespun cap for school.
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Washington’s Mother Character Timeline in Up From Slavery

The timeline below shows where the character Washington’s Mother appears in Up From Slavery. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1: A Slave Among Slaves
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
Meritocracy Theme Icon
Gradual Racial Progress Theme Icon
...quite sure when he was born, since his father was a slave owner and his mother was a slave, and there were no records kept of his birth. Washington never even... (full context)
Gradual Racial Progress Theme Icon
Washington’s mother was unable to attend to her children for any long period of time because she... (full context)
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
Gradual Racial Progress Theme Icon
Like his mother with her constant labor, Washington had no time for sports or leisure as a child... (full context)
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
Gradual Racial Progress Theme Icon
...a speech and read a long paper, something Washington assumes is the Emancipation Proclamation. Washington’s mother explained to the slaves that they had been freed, and all of the slaves rejoiced.... (full context)
Chapter 2: Boyhood Days
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
Washington’s mother decided to move their family to West Virginia to live with her husband, Washington and... (full context)
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
Vocational Education Theme Icon
...family needed the extra income. Washington was deeply disappointed, but with the help of his mother, arranged for the teacher to give him lessons after his long workday. (full context)
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
...hat or a cap to school, Washington did not have one. When he asked his mother if he could have a school cap, she was able to create a homespun cap... (full context)
Gradual Racial Progress Theme Icon
...about only having a first name. He chose Washington as his last name, and his mother had called him “Booker Taliaferro” as a child, so he adopted “Taliaferro” as his middle... (full context)
Chapter 4: Helping Others
Vocational Education Theme Icon
...Hampton, Washington was able to go home as a result of money sent by his mother and brother John as well as a gift from one of his teachers. Washington was... (full context)
Vocational Education Theme Icon
...abandoned house to rest. During the night, John found Washington and informed him that their mother had died during the night. Washington was heartbroken and felt lost. A large reason for... (full context)
The Dignity of Labor Theme Icon
Washington’s mother’s death left the family’s home in confusion. Amanda, Washington’s sister, was very young and did... (full context)
Chapter 15: The Secret of Success in Public Speaking
Meritocracy Theme Icon
...slave boy, he would get a weekly treat of molasses on his plate from his mother that was much more enjoyable and valuable to him than these extravagant meals. (full context)