Louis Farrakhan

Louis Farrakhan

Louis Walcott Farrakhan was born in New York on 11th May, 1933. After attending Winston-Salem Teachers College he worked as calypso singer.

In 1955 Farrakhan joined the Nation of Islam (sometimes known as Black Muslims), a black nationalist and religious organization that had been founded by Wallace Fard.

Adopting the Arabic name, Farrakhan, he recorded a song, A White Man's Heaven is a Black Man's Hell, for the movement and wrote two plays that were performed in Black Muslim mosques.

Farrakhan moved to New York where he worked closely with the two main leaders of the Nation of Islam, Elijah Muhammad and Malcolm X.

After Malcolm X left the Nation of Islam to form Organization of Afro-American Unity in March, 1964, Farrakhan replaced him as minister of Mosque Number Seven in Harlem, New York City.

When Elijah Muhammad died in Chicago on 25th February, 1975, the Nation of Islam split. Farrakhan now became leader of the Black Muslims but Muhammad's son led another faction, the Muslim American Community.

Farrakhan supported Jessie Jackson in 1983 during his campaign to win the presidency. However, he was asked to leave the campaign after upsetting Jewish votes with his comments on Adolf Hitler.

In 1995 Qubilah Shabazz, the daughter of Malcolm X, was accused of plotting to murder Farrakhan. Later that year he organised the highly successful Million Man March of African American men to Washington.