He was often misunderstood about his ideas on holding office and the whole question of the part the negro should take in politics; for he was convinced that there were other things far more important at that time to the negro than the matter of voting.
There was one phase of politics, however, that Washington did keep in close touch with. This can be best explained by giving some of his correspondence.
"Theodore Roosevelt, immediately after taking the oath of office as President of the United States, in Buffalo, after the death of President McKinley, wrote Mr. Washington the following note:
Buffalo, N. Y.
September 14, 1901.
Dear Mr. Washington:
I write you at once to say that to my deep regret my visit South must now be given up.
When are you coming North? I must see you as soon as possible. I want to talk over the question of possible appointments in the South exactly on the lines of our last conversation together.
I hope my visit to Tuskegee is merely deferred for a short season.
(Signed) Theodore Roosevelt.
"In response to the above note Mr. Washington went to the White House and discussed with the