Washington’s physicians, as doctors are wont to do, argued heatedly over the precise cause of death. Dr. Craik insisted that it was “inflammatory quinsy,” or peritonsillar abscess. Dr. Dick rejected such a possibility and offered three alternative diagnoses: stridular suffocatis (a blockage of the throat or larynx), laryngea (inflammation and suppuration of the larynx), or cynanche trachealis . The last arcane medical diagnosis (from the Latin, for “dog strangulation”), which prevailed as the accepted cause of Washington’s death for some time, referred to an inflammation and swelling of the glottis, larynx and upper trachea severe enough to obstruct the airway.
In July 1897, Du Bois left Philadelphia and took a professorship in history and economics at the historically black Atlanta University in Georgia.  His first major academic work was his book The Philadelphia Negro (1899), a detailed and comprehensive sociological study of the African-American people of Philadelphia, based on the field work he did in 1896–1897. The work was a breakthrough in scholarship, because it was the first scientific study of African Americans and a major contribution to early scientific sociology in the .   In the study, Du Bois coined the phrase "the submerged tenth" to describe the black underclass. Later in 1903 he popularized the term, the " Talented Tenth ", applied to society's elite class.  Du Bois's terminology reflected his opinion that the elite of a nation, both black and white, was critical to achievements in culture and progress.  Du Bois wrote in this period in a dismissive way of the underclass, describing them as "lazy" or "unreliable", but – in contrast to other scholars – he attributed many of their societal problems to the ravages of slavery. 
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