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Poole, Elijah (Muhammad, Elijah)

Born: 1897 AD
Died: 1975 AD, at 77 years of age.

Nationality: American
Categories: Activists


1897 - Born on October 7th in Sandersville. The leader of the black separatist religious movement known as the Nation of Islam (sometimes called Black Muslims) in the United States.

1923-1930 - The son of sharecroppers and former slaves, Muhammad moved to Detroit where he became assistant minister to the founder of the sect, Wallace D. Fard, at Temple No. 1.

1934 - Muhammad succeeded Fard as head of the movement, with the title “Minister of Islam.” Because of dissension within the Detroit temple, he moved to Chicago where he established Temple No. 2.

1942-1946 - During World War II he advised followers to avoid the draft, as a result of which he was charged with violating the Selective Service Act and was jailed.

1965-1975 - Muhammad became known especially for his flamboyant rhetoric directed at white people, whom he called “blue-eyed devils.” In his later years, however, he moderated his anti-white tone and stressed self-help among blacks rather than confrontation between the races. Because of Muhammad's separatist views, his most prominent disciple, Malcolm X, broke with the group and, before his assassination, helped to lend an identity to the group (once known as the American Muslim Mission and now part of the worldwide orthodox Muslim community) that split from the Nation of Islam after Muhammad's death.

         - Died on February 25th in Chicago.


Page last updated: 8:31am, 07th Apr '07