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Catalog Data

Written by:
Muhammad Ali, American, 1942 - 2016  Search this
Owned by:
Khalilah Ali, American, born 1950  Search this
Subject of:
Muhammad Speaks, American, founded 1962  Search this
Unidentified Man or Men  Search this
ink on paper
H x W (2018.75a): 8 11/16 × 8 9/16 in. (22 × 21.7 cm)
H x W (2018.75b): 11 × 8 9/16 in. (28 × 21.7 cm)
letters (correspondence)
Place depicted:
Louisville, Kentucky, United States, North and Central America
ca. 1968
In this letter, Muhammad Ali explains to then-wife Khalilah Camacho-Ali why he converted from Christianity to Islam. Ali publically converted to Islam in 1964.
A letter written by Muhammad Ali to his wife, Khalilah Camacho-Ali. The letter is two pages in length and is written in cursive, in blue ink, on two (2) sheets of partially torn, unlined, white paper. The first page (2018.75a) describes a night in Louisville, Kentucky where he encountered a man selling the newspaper of the Nationa of Islam, Muhammad Speaks. He noted that it was the first time he had heard of the paper. The second page (2018.75b) continues from page one and goes on to say that the newspaper seller invited him to a meeting, and though he did not intend to go to the meeting, he did purchase a copy of Muhammad Speaks. The rest of page 2 describes a cartoon in the paper that depicted an enslaved person being punished for praying in Arabic and a white slave owner insisting that the enslaved person prays to Jesus. The back of both pages are blank.
African American  Search this
Activism  Search this
Boxing  Search this
Communication  Search this
Identity  Search this
Religion  Search this
Slavery  Search this
Sports  Search this
Violence  Search this
Credit Line:
Collection of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, Gift of Jonathan Eig and Khalilah Camacho Ali
Object number:
Restrictions & Rights:
© Estate of Muhammad Ali. Permission required for use.
See more items in:
National Museum of African American History and Culture Collection
Documents and Published Materials
Data Source:
National Museum of African American History and Culture