African Americans on Postage Stamps

Malcolm X


33-cent Malcolm X stamp
The Malcolm X stamp was issued January 20, 1999.

"You can't separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom."
—Malcolm X

Malcolm X was born Malcolm Little in Omaha, Nebraska, the son of a Baptist preacher. In 1931, Malcolm’s father was killed, probably murdered because of his political and social activism. For Malcolm, this started a spiral into a life of crime that ended with his being sentenced to prison for burglary. While in prison, Malcolm became a militant activist and a follower of the Nation of Islam, a black nationalist religious movement based on traditional Islamic teachings and Marcus Garvey’s principles of black nationalism. After his release from prison, Malcolm became a powerful spokesman for the movement, one who was both popular yet polarizing. But in 1964 he split from the movement and started the Organization of Afro-American Unity, and after a trip to Mecca, he took the name El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz and came to believe that the world’s people could live in fellowship.

The Black Experience