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The Lost-Found Nation of Islam in the Wilderness of North America (NOI) was established in 1933 by two men who would make a tremendous impact upon the course of African American history. In doing so, they would in fact, change the course of both race relations and religion in America. One was an immigrant from (what is today known as) Pakistan , India , named Wallace D. Fard (pronounced “Fa-ROD”). He was also called, Wali Fard Mohammed, Professor W.D. Fard and Master Fard Muhammad, among other aliases. The other was his student, Elijah Poole.
In 1925, Mr. Poole moved his family from Deep Step, Georgia to Detroit , Michigan in hopes of better employment opportunities. However the infamous Wall Street Crash, which began in New York City in 1929 and lasted throughout most of the 1930’s, had made already bad economic conditions much worse. This event was also called “The Great Depression” because of the monetarily depleting domino effect it caused throughout the industrialized world (particularly the United States and Europe). Wealthy European Americans were found jumping out of windows and off of bridges after losing their money behind this financially catastrophic event.
Elijah Poole was now in worse shape in the North than he was in the South. This situation led to his developing a dependency on cigarettes and alcohol. Because of his unemployment, Elijah’s family had to subsist on welfare and other handouts. Oft-times he was embarrassed to even come home and face his family and would get drunk until he passed out on the street. On more than one occasion, his wife Clara would have to find him and carry him home on her shoulders.
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