Booker T. Washington was born on April 5,1856 in Hale's Ford Virginia. Washington was amongst the last generation born into slavery. His family gained freedom in 1865 under the Emancipation Proclamation. In 1881 Washington became the first leader of Tuskegee Institute. Washington became a conduit for funding educational programs for African Americans. He was able to persuade wealthy whites to fund his endeavors to improve conditions for African Americans in the United States. Washington founded the National Negro Business League (NNBL) in 1901. During his lifetime Washington published five books with the help of his long term advisor Timothy Thomas Fortune. His book titled Up from Slavery became a best seller in 1901. That same year President Theodore Roosevelt invited Washington to dine with him at The White House. He became the first African American to be invited by a president. During all of his travels Washington remained president of Tuskeegee Institute until his death. Washington died on November 14, 1915 at the age of 59. On April 7,1940 Washington became the first African American to be depicted on a United States postage stamps.