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Sale 2441 Lot 343
(ISLAM.) MALCOLM X. Two typed manuscripts for Malcolm X's Los Angeles Herald Dispatch column "God's Angry Men." Three typed 8 x 10 pages, each written on rectos only; with copious edits and corrections; one of the two articles signed "Malcolm X" at the foot of the third page of the article. Los Angeles, circa July-August, 1957
Estimate $200,000 - 300,000
two exceedingly rare original manuscripts written, edited and signed by malcolm x. In early 1957, most Americans had no idea who Malcolm X was. The Nation of Islam had not yet become something for white America to worry about. Malcolm X was still Elijah Muhammad's favorite son, and as such was dividing his time between Los Angeles, Chicago and New York, giving speeches. In fact Malcolm was beginning to get a reputation in the black community as a powerful speaker, and someone whom Elijah Muhammad himself respected, essentially his protégée.
In March of 1957, two of New York City's policemen were observed beating a Harlem man named Reese V. Poe with their billy-clubs. Hinton Johnson and a couple of members of Mosque Number 7, the largest mosque in the country, shouted for them to stop: "Hey, you're not in Alabama, this is New York!' The policemen paused for a moment, and then left Mr. Poe alone to turn their fury on Hinton Johnson, fracturing his skull. By now a small crowd had formed and was insisting the police take Johnson, who was bleeding, to the hospital. Instead, they took him to the 128th precinct station house where it didn't take long for a crowd of nearly 3000 to gather in front. The crowd was angry. This was just another incident, among many involving police who were not from the community, and who were known for their violence toward blacks. It looked like there might well be a riot, but someone suggested they call in the young leader from Mosque number 7, Mr. Malcolm X, who arrived with a contingent from the mosque. Malcolm was able to get the police to take Hinton Johnson to Harlem hospital and then addressed the crowd outside. Having finished, literally with a sweep of his hand (according to those present), he convinced them all that the situation was well under control and the crowd dispersed.
The whole incident was picked up by the New York Daily News and other services that played up the near riot conditions up in Harlem and of course Malcolm X's role in pacifying an "angry crowd." The July 18th issue of the Los Angeles Herald Dispatch reported the incident, in a lead article with the headline "Young Moslem Leader Explains the Doctrine of Mohammedanism," and in the same issue, Malcolm X contributed the first article in a series of articles titled "God's Angry Men."
The two articles basically carry the same message: that the "so-called Negro" was kidnapped and brought to America, kept in "ignorance and darkness," that "Elijah Muhammad teaches us that Almighty God ALLAH is all powerful and independent. Allah needs no one to apologize for him. Islam, his true religion, is not a religion of compromise . . . . Islam is Truth, life itself; it has been kept a secret from us. . . But Almighty God (Allah) forgets not. As he predicted in the Old Testament (Mal.4:15) that He would send Elijah to the lost sheep." Both of these articles under God's Angry Men are aimed at bringing people who have lost hope into the fold. Both close with a personal note: "I myself--being he who was lost and dead, buried here in the rubbish of the West, in the thickest darkness of sin and ignorance (hoodwinked) by the false teachings of the Slave master--am able to stand upright today PERPENDICULAR, on the square with my God ALLAH, and my own kind (here and in the East) . . . able for the first time in 400 years to see and hear."
The entire preceding paragraph, written in the first person ("I myself") Malcolm has gone over and changed to "We ourselves" and so forth. Malcolm's article "We Were a Dead People" appearing in the August-September 1956 issue of Moslem World is very close to the text of both these columns in the Los Angeles Herald Dispatch. At the foot of the third page of each article, Malcolm writes "Put your name in the Lamb's Book of Life. Write immediately to Mr. Elijah Muhammad 5335 So. Greenwood Ave, Chicago, Illinois." Copies of both articles will be provided for prospective bidders.