Visit from a Witness to History

Shaw (Watha T. Daniel) Library

Visit from a Witness to History

Malcolm X Black History Month Program Recap

On Feb. 21, 1965, Peter Bailey stood feet away and witnessed the assassination of his friend, Malcolm X.

Almost exactly 50 years later, on Feb. 8, 2015, Peter Bailey, now a University of the District of Columbia professor, shared his experiences with more than 30 adult and teen community members at the Watha T. Daniel/Shaw Neighborhood Library. He recalled not only witnessing the assassination, but he also remembered Malcolm X's subsequent character assassination in the media. He related how his association with the Civil Rights leader led to his persecution by J. Edgar Hoover and resulted in him being blacklisted from federal employment for over 40 years.

Director Spike Lee spent several hours conferring with Professor Bailey as he wrote the screenplay for Malcolm X, and after a screening of the film at this event, Professor Bailey fielded questions from the community about this controversial leader.

Peter Bailey is also is a former co-editor of Ebony Magazine, and was a co-founder of the Organization of Afro-American Unity with Malcolm X.