A personal letter written by Malcolm X to Nation of Islam leader and his mentor, Elijah Muhammad, about the state of his marriage is set to hit the market.
Penned in 1959, the letter reveals personal details about Malcolm X‘s marriage to his wife Betty Shabazz. It’s reported that the letter shows a correspondence between the two controversial leaders, offering counseling and advice on marital woes.
According to TMZ, the letter details an issue Malcolm X and wife Betty Shabazz had been quarreling over for several months. He reportedly asks, “I have complete faith in whatever way you wish or may chose (or may not) to take it up with her.”
The letter is said to have originally been in the care of Elijah Muhammad’s son, but eventually was handed over to his attorney in order to sell it to a collector over 20 yeas ago. Moments In Time, a reputable company of collector’s items, is now selling it for $75,000.
Finding the right buyer
Experts believe that this announcement will draw in buyers from historical museums to Malcom X fans— but it would also be an interesting turn of events if the current Nation of Islam leader, Hon. Minister Louis Farrakhan decided to buy the document for the Nation’s own archives.
Malcolm X fiercely promoted the teachings of the Nation of Islam under the direction of Nation leader, Elijah Muhammad from 1952-1964. During a time of civil unrest between 1962 and 1964, X and Muhammad had a major falling out, in which he was placed on suspension from the Nation and momentarily stripped of his ability to represent the Nation. During this time, he took a pilgrimage to Mecca that changed his outlook on the Nation of Islam and changed his views on religion. As Malcolm X began to adapt to Sunni Muslimhood upon his return, he was infamously and mysteriously murdered a year later in 1965. By the time of his death, he had changed his name to el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz.
Even after his death in 1965, Malcolm X’s legacy continues to make an impact.
Malcolm X’s legacy still makes headlines
Malcolm Xavier Combs, a student at Christ the King High School, told the New York Daily News that a school administrator, Veronica Arbitello, called him to her office to talk about his request to have the name, Malcolm X, on his sweater.
“[She] told me … that’s someone I don’t want to be associated with,” Combs said. “All I wanted was the ‘X.’ My name is Malcolm Xavier Combs.”
But Arbitello took it one step further and then started to mock Combs for his request. The administrator laughed with her husband, Coach Joe Arbitello, about the name and introduced him as “the new Malcolm X.”
“I felt insulted,” Combs said. “They just laughed at me … that’s my name, Malcolm X, not a nickname.”
Although Combs ended up canceling the order for the sweater, when he talked to his parents about the problem, they said that they hadn’t been contacted by the school or Arbitello about the sweater. Combs was left feeling humiliated and without the senior swag he’d hoped to wear.
Later that week the Queens student got the surprise of his life when the Civil Rights icon’s daughter came to visit him.
Malcolm Xavier Combs was thrilled to meet Ilyasah Shabazz at Sharpton’s National Action Network headquarters in Harlem on Sunday. During the meeting, Shabazz gave him an “X Legacy” tee shirt, according to the New York Daily News.
“I’m probably going to frame that — I like it so much,” Combs said.
During the meeting, Shabazz praised her father’s legacy. Combs’ request to have Malcolm X’s name on his sweater had been denied because the school administrator thought it was too controversial, a claim that Shabazz also argued against.
“He was fearless because he loved us and he believed in our humanity,” she said. “He believed every child deserved an opportunity to realize his or her God-given potential. He said we’re miseducated [and] demanded an end to 400 years of trauma … What’s so controversial about that?”