Dr John Henrik Clarke New Afrikan Grandmaster Teacher, The Importance of Nationality & Land

We have overused the word Black, because black tells you how you look, but it doesn’t tell you who you are. ~ Dr. John Henrik Clarke

NBCs (Negros, Blacks & Colored): Those three people don’t exist, because there is no land called Negro, Black, Colored or even African-American. That’s why it’s effective to use the term “so-called” before those “assigned” & “accepted” statuses or labels that identify us as “artificial-persons” & wards of the state under ordinances & UCCs (Uniform Commerical Codes) of the 13th Amendment.

The Struggle iz For Land PT II ( Organize The South / Black Belt ) – Haki Kweli Shakur


We are a loose nation searching for a nationality. The population of African people in the United States is far in excess of six small European nations. Where we are going? We have to go back as best we can to where slavery and colonialism took us from. And they took us from a concept of nation management and nation maintenance. We have been so long away from home we unfortunately have forgotten how we ruled states before the foreigners got there. We did very well. We produced a state that had no worth for jails because no one had gone to one; no worth for prostitution ‘cause no one had ever been one. We did not produce a state with a whole lot of nonsense about rugged individualism but we produced a collective state. You had to function in relationship with the total state. You didn’t do your thing unless it was in keeping with the maintenance of the whole people. It wasn’t a personal ego-personality type of thing that we have now. “I’ve got my rights. Mind your own business.” In a collective society, everybody’s business is everybody’s business. Your behavior determines, to some extent, the destiny of your nation and your group. Therefore, your group has a right and responsibility to preside over your behavior and you have a responsibility to make that behavior in a manner that does not endanger the group. This kind of collective society — giving to each according to his need — existed in Africa not only before Karl Marx, but also before Europe.

Revolutionary Nationalism ( We Are Descendants of Different Tribes/Nation’s ) – Haki Kweli Shakur

Land is the basis of nation. There is no way to build a strong independent nation when most of the land is being controlled by foreigners who also determine the economic status of the nation. Africans need seriously to study their conquerors and their respective temperaments. Neither the Europeans nor the Arabs came to Africa to share power with any African. They both came as guests and stayed as conquerors.

I would not even name Elijah Muhammad except for the fact that he did make a contribution toward nation-consciousness. In nation-consciousness you can make your own religion. You can go to his or you can make another one or choose another one. The laws of nation-consciousness are the laws of responsibility, and we are not going to save ourselves until we are conscious of nation-responsibility and nation-building. We are not going to save ourselves as individuals; we’re going to do it as a collective. To do it as a collective, we’re going to have to be bold enough (even if we have to break our own hearts) to find out where we went wrong.

Dr. John Henrik Clarke – Nationality ( NationHood )

There has been a systematic attack on the psyche of “black” people for roughly 400 years in the United States of America. I place “black” in quotes because it tells you how you look but not who you are. Dr. John Henrik Clarke once said that the proper name of a people must always relate to three things: land, history, and culture. Black is simply a color. As a matter of fact, black is the combination of all colors. It is a noble word. Despite its nobility, I maintain that it fails to adequately reference the proper history and lineage of its intended audience. It is a cleaver word and one that has been given great power by whites and blacks alike. However, there is no geographical specificity with the word “black”. Land, History, and Culture are three things that are noticeably deficient when referencing so-called “black” people. Let’s break down the three and see what I’m talking about.

When the term land is referred to it means an ancestral point of origin. A place in which your ancestors have dwelled and controlled the resources therein. For “blacks” in America this is a complicated issue. Though most have been born and raised here in America for numerous generations, this land is not our ancestral homeland. We do not control the resources of this land. There have been centuries of government sanctioned anti-black racism that have made it very apparent that “blacks” were merely residents or second class citizens with limited rights and/or privileges. Political activist and Anti-Racism advocate Scot Nakagawa gives us insight into this by stating, “anti-black racism is the fulcrum of white supremacy.” Scot is correct in his observation. The kidnapping, dehumanization, and enslavement of “blacks” provided a platform on which white supremacy could flourish. An entire country was built on this platform. The European refugees who fled to this country under the guise of religious persecution needed land. This land was necessary for their very survival. Land provided the foundation for the promulgation of white supremacy. How can one reasonably expect me to say that this land is my land when my ancestors were denied the basic rights of humanity? How can I claim this is my land when centuries of legalized discrimination even lynching was tolerated and encouraged? How can I claim this is my land when my Native American brothers and sisters languish into obscurity? Contrary to the song my friends, this land is not your land and this land is not my land. It is Native American land.

These are not  my words but i agree with the basis of Land! Free The Land!

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From Kody Scott to Monster to Sanyika Shakur: The Life and Transformation of an L.A. Gang Member

From Kody Scott to Monster to Sanyika Shakur: The Life and Transformation of an L.A. Gang Member

Murderers are, most commonly, not the average eleven year old boy. Gangs are not inducting and recruiting the average eleven year old boy. Kody Scott was not the average eleven year old boy. He was however, a fairly normal and average boy in Southern Los Angeles, where he grew up with his mother and five siblings. It was where he ultimately became a member of the Eight Trays Crips gang. In his book Monster: the Autobiography of an L.A Gang Member, Kody writes of his life as he was inducted into the gang, as he grew within the gang, and as he finally pulled himself out of the gang. His entire story allows readers further incite into a world where little is known and understood.

For the people who join gangs they have a range of different reasons for joining. For Kody, as early as elementary school he had decided that he no longer wanted to be a victim. “Early on I saw and felt both sides of the game being played where I lived. It was during my time in elementary school that I chose to never be a victim again, if I could help it. There was no gray area, no middle ground. You banged or held strong association with the gang, or else you were a victim, period.” (Shakur 100) His childhood was also full of hardship, violence and instability, something for which the gang world offered a new kind of family and a refuge. (Shakur 103) Kody entered into the Crips gang in 1975 at the age of eleven. That night of his initiation he became a murderer and his journey through the Crip world began. The night started with these words “‘Bangin’ aint no part-time thang, its full-time, it’s a career. It’s being down when aint nobody else down with you. It’s gettin’ caught and not tellin’. Killin’ and not caring, and dyin’ without fear. It’s love for your set and hate for the enemy.” (Shakur 12) The night ended with Kody gunning down a rival gang with a 12 gauge shotgun sawed off, with pump action.

Sanyika Shakur aka Monster Kody Beyond The Hate

The ferocity and quickness that gang life engulfs its members is unbelievable. When reading Kody’s autobiography one minute you’re reading of his initiation into the gang world, the next you have witnessed more accounts of violence and death than you can easily recall. One minute he inhabits grade school the next, no one and nothing matters to him as much as his set within the Crips.

His relationship with his family greatly decreased as he became more and more invested and involved in the gang life. Kody immediately rushes onto his path of gaining his sets respect and gaining a reputation. The ultimate prize is the title of O.G., Original Gangster. “…I had escalated from little homie to homie, and was putting in much work and dropping many bodies…For I had learned early that there were three stages of reputation to go through before the title of O.G.—Original gangster—would apply righteously..” (Shakur 14)

Through his pursuit of success in the gang world Kody puts nothing ahead of his reputation and respect. From his ruthlessness he gains the nickname of Monster, “In 1977, when I was thirteen, while robbing a man I turned my head and was hit in the face. The man tried to run, but was tripped by Tray Ball, who then held him for me. I stomped him for twenty minutes before leaving him unconscious in an ally…The police told by standers the person responsible for this was a ‘monster.’ The name stuck and I took that as a moniker over my birth name.” (Shakur 13) To live up to his new nickname Kody became progressively more violent and vicious. He began to develop the reputation and respect he worked so hard for. His years in the Crips are a whirlwind of battles against rival gangs and against rival sets. Yet Kody believes he is a warrior fighting to make his home safer “gangbangers think of themselves as making others fearful in order to make themselves safer.” (Brumble 158)

While amidst the ongoing war that Kody finds himself a combatant in, the outside world continues on and he meets his future wife and mother of his children. He does not put them first until much later in his life. He continues to fight for his set, often being captured and sent to jail. The number of times and different kinds of jails Kody encounters is exceptional. However jail and what it provided became one of the most prominent reasons Kody gets out of the crips gang.

Kody dropped out of school after sixth grade and did not retain much of his education. Jail allowed and provided a way for Kody to educate himself. He became literate, and some of the jails even had trade schools that the prisoners could participate in. Jail was the most beneficial in its contributions to Kodys education. Early on however, it did nothing to dissuade his actions as a gangbanger. It wasn’t until much later that Kody began to use the education he had gained from jail to question the ways of his life. While in jail he was introduced to Muhammad Abdullah, he led the Muslim worship services at the Youth Training School (the jail Kody was in at the time). Muhammad introduced Kody into the Muslim world and gave him pamphlets to read such as Message to the Oppressed. He introduced to Kody and his fellow gangbangers the idea that what they were doing was self destructive; they were killing each other when their “real enemy” (white people) is out killing them. They are less of a threat when they are turned in upon themselves (Shakur 219). This is the beginning that leads Kody eventually toward his freedom. This leads him towards Islam, and toward the CCO, the Consolidated Crip Organization. The CCO was an organization of the Crips that formed alliances with other gangs, such as the Bloods. As a policy they would not disrespect or bring violence upon their allied gangs. After he began to find fault with the CCO and their leadership he was introduced to the New Afrikan Independence movement. This was a final influence that led to his retrieval from the crips “I received the ideological formulation material and it redeemed me. It gave me answers to all the questions I had about myself in relation to this society…the science was strong and precise…once I overstood the New Afrikan ideology and pledged my allegiance to the Republic of new Afrika’s independence, I began to see cripping in a different light…” (Shakur 352)

Kody Scott spent thirteen years in the Crips before he pulled himself out. He went from Kody, to Monster Kody to Sanyika Shakur. He went from only caring about his crip family to realizing the importance of his wife and children and putting them first. However Kody wrote his book from solitary confinement for assault charges he received as a “normal civilian”.

What Kody has done in his life is beyond words awful yet also somehow remarkable in the way he was able to right himself. He changed the way he thought and how he looked at the world. He gave us his novel, a story so intricate one must read it themselves to fully grasp. His novel provides a view into a world that is not much well understood. As Kody said in his book “there are no other gang experts except participants.” (Shakur xiii) He has provided the world a firsthand narrative of his expertise on the subject, hoping to warn and inspire those youth who are facing what he once faced.

Works Cited
Brumble, David. “Stanley ‘Tookie’ Williams, Gangbanger Autobiography, and Warrior Tribes” Journal of American Studies 44 2010: 155-170. Internet.
Brumble, David. “The Gangbanger Autobiography of Monster Kody (Aka Sanyika Shakur) and Warrior Literature” American Literary History 12 2000:158-186. Internet.
Horowitz, Mark. “In Search of Monster.” The Atlantic. N.p. December, 1993. Web. 4 Nov, 2010.
Shakur, Sanyika. Monster: The Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member. New York: Atlantic Monthly Press, 1993. Print.

Photo Citation:
“Monster: The Autobiography of an L.A. Gang Member.” Amazon.com. Web. 2 Dec 2010.


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Quotations of Tookie The Little Blue Book

Quotations of Tookie

1. Working together, we can put an end to this cycle that creates deep pain in the hearts of our mothers, our fathers, and our people, who have lost loved ones to this senseless violence.

2. Once I was in solitary confinement, it provided me with the isolated moments to reflect on my past and to dwell upon something greater, something better than involving myself in thuggery and criminality. It had to be more to life than that. It had to be more than the madness that was disseminating throughout this entire prison.

3. Between the years of 1988 to 1994, and it’s a continuous — it’s an incessant reality for me. My redemptive transition began in solitary confinement, and unlike other people who express their experiences of an epiphany or a satori, I never experienced anything of that ilk. Mine — that wouldn’t have been enough.

4. I often tell people that I didn’t have a 360-degree turnaround; I had a 720-degree turnaround.

5. It took me twice as much. Just one spin around wouldn’t have done it. I was that messed up, that lost, that mentacided, brainwashed.

6. I was able to gradually in a piecemeal fashion change my life slowly but surely through education, through edification, through spiritual cultivation, battling my demons. And eventually, that led to me embracing redemption.

Kiwe & Damu Unity is a Must ( TOOKIE KNOW ) THE TERM GANG ORIGINATED IN SLAVERY – Haki Kweli Shakur


7. I’m talking to any youth who are considered to be or deemed to be at-risk or even hinting around being a thug or a criminal of any type of genre.

8. I mostly propagate education and the need for it, because to me, that is the terra firma in which any human being must stand in order to survive in this country or to survive anywhere in the world, in dealing, you know, with every aspect of civilization, every aspect of surviving. Education is very important. It took me all of these years to discern that, and now I do.

9. We started out — at least my intent was to, in a sense — address all of the so-called neighboring gangs in the area and to put, in a sense — I thought I can cleanse the neighborhood of all these, you know, marauding gangs. But I was totally wrong. And eventually, we morphed into the monster we were addressing.

10. when you maintain this sense of peace and you live by truth, by integrity, these things don’t bother me. It doesn’t. I have been experiencing moribund type experiences most of my life. I could have died many a times. I could have died when I was shot. I could have died when I was shot at by the police and rival gang members. There were many opportunities for me to die. Of course, I don’t want to die.

11. I mean, after my redemption I have what I consider to be a joie de vivre, so, you know, I have an enjoyment, a love for life. So that’s why I can calmly sit here and speak to you or anyone else with peace in my heart and peace in my mind. I don’t get rattled. Nothing can rattle me. Nothing will ever rattle me. I have been rattled the majority of my life.

12. Well, the fact that a person such as me, of my ilk, who deemed the opposing gang as an eternal enemy, it wasn’t hard for people to believe me, because they knew where I stood. There were no clandestine or latent messages. Everybody knew where I stood. And for me to come out and say that what we were doing was wrong, it was believable. That’s why people didn’t – or at least the gang members didn’t discredit my propensity and my alacrity for peace. That’s why I was embraced with sincerity by those who I knew and those I didn’t know on both sides of the fence.

13. The death penalty, it’s not a system of justice, it is a system of – a so-called system of justice that perpetuates a, shall I say, a vindictive type of response, a vigilante type of aura upon it. We’re talking about something that is barbaric. We’re talking about something that – it doesn’t deter anything. I mean, if it did, then it wouldn’t be so many – especially in California, we’re talking about over 650 individuals on death row. And if it was a deterrent, this place wouldn’t be filled like this. And it’s an expensive ordeal that – the money, as you know, the monetary means comes out of the taxpayers’ pocket. And for anyone to think that murder can be resolved by murdering, it’s ridiculous.

14. I mean, we look at all of the wars that we have throughout other countries and other nations, and all it does is – this violence, all it does is engender violence. There seems to be no end, but a continuous cycle, an incessant process of blood and gore that doesn’t end. And through violence, you can’t possibly obtain peace. You can, in a sense, occupy a belief of peace; in other words, through this mechanism of violence, you – it appears that because there is a standing army or standing police that is used in brutality or violence or a system that uses brutality or violence that that is going to totally eliminate or stop criminous behavior or criminous minds or killings or what have you, but it doesn’t.

15. I’m learning to “master self” while rising from the ashes of madness.

16. “I have a despicable background. I was a criminal. I was a co-founder of the Crips. I was a nihilist.”

17. “I functioned primarily on street wit. I managed to make it to the 12th grade. The teachers were insipid in their methodology.” “Cripping was all I knew. I lived it. I breathed it. I walked it and I talked it.”

18. “My courage was predicated on violence, on a negative reputation, on drugs, on ignorance. The courage I have now, or fortitude, is based on faith.”

19. “People forget that redemption is tailor-made for the wretched.”

20. “I always ask the question: Can a black man in America receive justice? I can say to you or anybody else that the answer is absolutely no. There ’s a myriad of things that bring me to this conclusion — prosecutorial misconduct, the biased selection of juries, the issues of informants, the exclusion of exculpatory evidence, illegal interrogation of witnesses. It commonplace. It deeply ingrained in the California criminal justice system.”

21. “I was darned near twice this size. I had an indelibly entrenched grimace on my face. I had total disdain for the law enforcement system and it showed. And I was shackled.”

22. “To threaten me with death does not accomplish the means of the criminal justice system or satiate those who think my death or my demise will be a closure for them. Their loved ones will not rise up from the grave and love them. I wish they could. I sympathize or empathize with everyone who has lost a loved one. But I didn’t’ do it. My death would not mollify them.”

23. “They can empathize with me. I pretty much experienced all the madness they a’re going through.”

24. “I feel a sense of bliss within. I like to see the viability of youth.”

25. “I don’t take myself seriously. I do take my helping children and writing books exceedingly seriously.”

26. “How can a person express contrition if he’s not guilty?”

27. “ We started the Crips to protect ourselves and our families from other gangs. We used violence against their violence. But starting the Crips only made things worse.”

28. “Prison is a place where grown men have gone insane. It is a place where men have been killed and where some have even killed themselves. Prison is hell. This I know, … Life in Prison “

29. “In prison, violence is like an active volcano — it can erupt at any time. Violence can come from someone you hardly know, or even from someone who is very close to you. You can have a friend today, and tomorrow he can become your No. 1 enemy. It’s crazy in here, … Life in Prison.”

30. “They would try at every turn to discredit me, but I was game,”

31. “If it’s my time to be executed, what’s all the ranting and raving going to do?”

32. “The only thing that I was doing was destroying my own kind,”

33. “ In choosing not to be a beast, I discovered my humanity. I became autodidactic, self-educated – a critical thinker “

34. “ I was inspired to write children’s books, but without blood and gore. “

35. “ If you’re going to teach a child, teach him properly. “

36. “ ” I am no longer part of the problem. Thanks to the Almighty, I am no longer sleepwalking through life,”

37. “ “I’ve become a man of peace. My redemption keeps me strong.” has

38. I Read About George Jackson and His Comrads Attempts To Convert The Black Criminal into The Ultimate Revolutionary! It Would Be A Harder Challenge For Me To Transfigure My Machiavellian Mode To An Educated And Redemptive Mind Set!

39. ” I began studying more black history, I attribute the Restoration of my self confidence and Self worth to reading about My Ancestors in Amerikkka and Afrika , For decades i had participated in my own dehumanization, The word ” mentacide ” – brainwashing – coined by psychologist Bobby Wright perfectly depicts my state of mind, I had been mentacided about my culture, my ethnicity, and my purpose, There was much work that had to be done to reverse the damage, I’d have to RE-HUMANIZE MYSELF ”

40. Armed with the radical EVOLUTION of mind,body, and behavior I was being reshaped by the disciplines of consistent will power, knowledge,dedication and SPIRITUALITY Serving as an ethical nutrient in my life , The ” SPIRIT ACT ” of spirituality induced me to ” MA’AT ” ( An Egyptian or Kamitic term that Means TRUTH, JUSTICE, and RIGHTEOUSNESS) and I discovered how to devote faith and praise to the one and only GOD!

41. ” Evil Introduced me to black history with a book entitled Destruction of Black Civilization By Chancellor Williams The study of Black History | Law | Psychology | Math | Religion | Swahili | Spirituality and other subjects became a staple of our daily discipline in the scheme of SURVIVAL!

42. In time I was able to deduce through comparative study 📖 of World religions that no single person or religious sect has a MONOPOLY on God or SPIRITUAL CULTIVATION! , I have no Qualms about being NONDENOMINATIONAL. My intention is to connect with God based on my own merits to Obtain spiritual enrichment rather than focus on a particular church or religion, I will never turn away from spiritual knowledge of The Metu Neter , Quran , bible, Perennial Psychology of the Bhagavad Gita or any other worthy Spiritual Scripture, I construct my faith around facts that can best help me REDEEM MYSELF! ”

43. ” Throughout my life I was hoodwinked by South Central’s terminal conditions, its broad and deadly template for failure. From the beginning I was spoon-fed negative stereotypes that covertly positioned black people as genetic criminals-inferior, illiterate, shiftless, promiscuous, and ultimately ” THREE-FIFTHS ” of a human being, as states in the constitution of the united states of Amerikkka. Having bought into this myth, I was shackled to the lowest socioeconomic rung where underprivileged citizens compete ruthlessly for morsels of the amerikan pie-a pie theoretically served proportionately to all, based on their ambition, intelligence, and perseverance.“

44. “ Like many others I became a slave to a delusional dream of capitalism’s false hope: a slave to Dys-education, a slave to nihilism; a slave to drugs, a slave to black-on-black violence; and a slave to self hate, paralyzed within a social vacuum, I gravitated toward thughood, not out of aspiration but out of desperation to survive the monstrous inequities that show no mercy to young or old. Aggression, I was to learn , served as a poor man’s merit for manhood. To die as a street martyr was seen as a noble thing ”

45. “ Any time we have a crip attack a staff member we look for the link to tookie “. His words confirm that regardless of my transition, positive youth projects, peace initiatives, and more than a decade of committing not a single disciplinary infraction , I am always to be a suspect. The vindictive objective to destroy me is so irrational that the California department of corrections is apparently willing to incite potential prison bedlam under the guise of preventing violence by locking down hundreds of Afrikan Amerikans. “

46. “ Nonetheless I manage to rise above these malicious attempts to negatively portray me. Anxiety and defeatism are not a option ”

47. “ Though i can’t condone it, much of the violence i inflicted on my gang rivals and other blacks was an unconscious display of my frustration with poverty, racism, police brutality, and other systematic injustices routinely visited upon residents of Urban Black Colonies such as South Central Losangeles “

48. “ I was filled with hate for Injustice. Yet my reaction to the hate was violence directed only towards other blacks. “

49. “ Condition And Brainwashed to Hate myself and my own race, other black people became my prey and the crips my sword “

50. “ Unlike those ashamed to admit it their motivation or too blind to recognize it, I forged through much of my Life locked into a hostile intimacy with Amerikkka’s wrongness “

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Gullah Jack Bakongo Leader/ Spiritualist of The Denmark Vesey Conspiracy 1822 was Executed July 12 1822

Gullah Jack  was executed July 12, 1822 also known as Couter Jack and sometimes referred to as “Gullah” Jack Pritchard, was an African conjurer, who is historically known for aiding Denmark Vesey in planning a large Maafa (slavery) rebellion that would become known as Denmark Vesey Conspiracy of 1822. Little was known about his background, except that he was of Bakongo origin and was shipped from Zanzibar to America under Zephaniah Kingsley’s direction, Gullah Jack was allowed to take a bag aboard ship which he always kept with him. Approximately forty people escaped or were taken prisoners in the 1812 Seminole raid on the Kinsley plantation where Gullah Jack was enslaved. He was among the group that eventually ended up in Charleston, South Carolina. In 1821, Paul Pritchard purchased him there.

The K.Kinte Show Season 6 Origin of The Term Black Power RVA 1919, John Mitchell Jr , and The Origins And Power of Vodoun ( Voodoo ) With Guest Haki Kweli Shakur

A short man with bushy side whiskers who acted ‘artful’ for whytes, Gullah Jack had perfected the ‘shuck-and-jive’ persona. He was a member of the AME church that Denmark Vesey attended. Just after Christmas 1821, Vesey recruited Gullah Jack to be one of his lieutenants. Gullah Jack was a conjurer and known among Blacks as “the little man who can’t be killed.” He had a reputation as a powerful root doctor who was skilled in the uses of herbs for medicine or poison and able to create powerful protective amulets against evil. He also represented an Angolan company called the “Gullah Company” or the “Gullah Society.”

Gullah Jack was instrumental in spreading the message of Denmark’s plan to seize the city of Charleston, kill most of the whytes, and, if necessary, escape to the Caribbean, supposedly, to Haiti. He recruited African-born men as soldiers for the revolution and gave the recruits African religious symbols to guarantee victory against the “buckra” (whytes). He instructed his faithful to only eat parched corn and ground nuts on the day of the attack and gave them crab claws to hold in their mouths as they attacked, to keep them from being wounded. He is also said to have used his spiritual powers to terrify others into keeping silent about the conspiracy. Historians believe Jack’s strong African culture, contrasted against Vesey’s preaching, helped attract many of the enslaved that joined the revolt.

Indigenous Spiritual Science ( Spirituality Didn’t Start in a Book ) – Haki Kweli Shakur

The plan was betrayed and Gullah Jack was captured on July 5, 1822. At his trial Gullah Jack played the fool so much that some of the judges could not believe he was part of the rebellion. However, as the trial progressed and six witnessed testified against him, Jack’s demeanor changed. He scowled and gave his accusers hard looks. He made motions and designs with his fingers until the judges admonished him for trying to bewitch the witnesses. Testimony from his trial mention that he requested an extension on his life for one or two weeks. However, he was condemned to death and hung on July 12, 1822. He is still remembered and admired in the Gullah/Geechee nation.

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Born in the wake of Freedom – John Mitchell Jr

“Born in the Wake of Freedom”

” He had a gun in his hand, truth at his lips and an army at his back,”  – John H Mitchell

The Civil War and slavery lay just seventeen years behind. One of the stormiest periods in the history of the nation was drawing to a close. The assassination of Lincoln, the turmoil of reconstruction and the Hayes-Tilden controversy were fresh in the memories of Richmonders of that day. Gathering in an upper room of a building located near the corner of Third and Broad streets thirteen former slaves (James H. Hayes, James H. Johnston, E.R. Carter, Walter Fitzhugh, Henry Hucles, Albert V. Norrell, Benjamin A. Graves, James E. Merriweather, Edward A. Randolph, William H. Andrews and Reuben T. Hill) pooled their meager resources and started America’s oldest Negro newspaper on a career which was destined to play an important part in molding the opinions of Negroes in this city, state and nation. [Richmond Planet, 5/28/1938]

The first editors of the Planet were Edwin Archer Randolph, a Yale graduate and a leading politician of his day, who served as editor- in-chief. James E. Merriwether, an outstanding educator and civic leader, and E.R. Carter, also prominent in politics, served under Randolph as contributing editors. Reuben T. Hill was selected to manage the paper while the other members of the group, mostly employed as public school teachers, made occasional contributions to its columns. [Richmond Planet, 5/28/1938]

No stranger to controversy even in its early days, the Planet took a strong editorial stance against the rumor that the Richmond School Board was planning to sack the Negro School Principals: James H. Hayes, Albert V. Norell, and James Johnston. The School Board was so displeased that most of the male Negro school teachers lost their jobs. Among them, John Mitchell, Jr.

Although Mitchell did not found the Richmond Planet, a newspaper,”born in the wake of freedom,” nor was he its first editor, it was under his tenure that the Planet gained its well-deserved reputation as a proponent of racial equality and of rights for the African-American community.

John Mitchell JR, Black Power Was Born in RVA, Richmond Planet Paper, Armed Self Defense – Hak Kweli Shakur

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Born a slave in Richmond on July 11, 1863, Mitchell was appointed editor of the weekly paper in 1884 at the age of just twenty-one. He quickly gained a reputation as a man determined to expose racial injustice wherever it lurked. One writer described him as, “dar[ing] to hurl the thunderbolts of truth into the ranks of the wicked.” “No stronger race man is known among us,” the adulation continued. “Clinging to no party, subserving to no one interest save that of the oppressed, he throws the full force of heart and mind into every question that will affect…the welfare of his brethren.” [Freeman, (Indianapolis, Indiana, 8/30/1890)]

Under Mitchell, the Planet’s masthead, the ‘Strong Arm’, was a flexed bicep surrounded by shock waves that radiated out from a clenched fist, reflecting the force and energy with which Mitchell projected his opinions. For forty-five years, the Planet covered news: local; national; and worldwide. Much of the paper’s focus, however was on lynchings, segregation and the rise of the Ku Klux Klan. Deterred by none, Mitchell’s reports, editorials and cartoons denounced racial prejudice and ridiculed its perpetrators.

The images that you are about to see are taken directly from the microfilmed pages of the Planet itself. They open a window into the past and allow us to look back to a dark and desperate time in our nation’s history when Jim Crow prevailed and the lynch mob ruled. 👇🏾👇🏾👇🏾


John Mitchell, Jr. was born a slave in Richmond, Virginia. After the war, he will become an active civic leader as well as a civil rights activist in Richmond’s Jackson Ward community. The area gained notoriety as being a hub for freedmen both before and after the Civil War and was given the nickname: “Black Wall Street of America.”  In 1884, Mitchell joins the “Richmond Planet” and was made an editor. Previously he had been a teacher in local schools in the community. As a journalist, Mitchell campaigned against lynching and Jim Crow. Due to the large concentration of white supremacist groups in the region, writing about these issues put Mitchell in danger:

Mitchell himself was threatened with hanging at the hands of a Charlotte County mob angered by his reporting of the lynching, there, of Richard Walker in May 1886. Mitchell was sent a rope with a note attached warning him that he would be lynched himself if he ever set foot in the county. In reply, and borrowing a line from Shakespeare, Mitchell had this to say: “There are no terrors, Cassius, in your threats, for I am so strong in honesty that they pass me like the idle wind, which I respect not.” Then, armed with two Smith & Wesson pistols, he boarded a train for Smithville and undeterred walked the five miles from the states to the site of the hanging.” [Maurice Duke and Daniel P. Jordan, eds., A Richmond Reader: 1733-1983, (Chapel Hill, N.C., 1983), pp. 327-328]

Mitchell became a leader of the Knights of Pythias both locally and on the state level where he remained an active leader until the 1920’s. He was also president of the National Afro-American Press Association and founder and president of the Mechanic’s Saving Bank in Richmond. In 1904, Richmond passed a new law to enforce segregated seating on its trolleys and to protest, Mitchell ordered a boycott of the system which was covered in his article: “Street Car Trap.”

Mitchell also finds himself to be active in politics. In both 1892 and 1894 he runs for and is elected to a seat as a Richmond City alderman. In 1921, Mitchell runs for governor of Virginia on the “Lilly Black” Republican ticket. This loss would come to haunt him in his later years as his run for governor itself was opposed by other African Americans in the community for fear that it would divide the black vote.

However, the most ambitious of all of Mitchell’s goals was his Mechanics Savings Bank where he served as both President and founder. Despite all of his efforts, by 1922, the bank was failing and Mitchell was accused of misusing tens of thousands of dollars which will eventually take him to the State Supreme Court where he countered charges against him. Mitchell was eventually cleared of all charges but the bank went into receivership in 1923 and then re-charted by the State in 1924. After the intense legal battle, Mitchell found himself stripped of all assets despite remaining the editor of the Richmond Planet until his death.



EVOLUTION of WRITING Origin and Development of Script Arts – Onyeji Nnaji





Origin and Development of Script Arts.

(Extracted from the book,Reminiscence)


Onyeji Nnaji

I grew up in the part of the world where everything said by the mouth or scribbled by hands on the ground is attached great importance because, as the elders would say; they all have meanings. By this reason, as children, we became fixated and attracted to the several body artistic designs and marks on different walls, admiring them with the wishes that we had known how to scribble them like those people who are older than us. This formed the fundamental relevance I developed from childhood for scripts and the arts in them. The relevance of scripted art is not just the beauty it carries. Of course, one that is overtaken by the beauty in any scripted art as we were those day as children will never take notice or understand the underlying meaning in it. For, as commonly known, every scripted art is designed for the sole purpose of bringing information across to other, and by so doing, the script would be preserved beyond time.

The reason for writing is for proper documentation and sustenance of whatever language and information the script may contain. Scripted writings give the oral grandparents sustainable proof. The purpose therefore, is that what had been spoken should be held the way it was spoken for generations since the brain thinks of so many things and would not recall all its involvement with speech exactly as the previous ones, after a longer period of active engagement. Delicate documents like the oral tradition and myths, folklores and other culturally and traditionally endued knowledge could not have been so accurately sustained without certain aspect of them being influenced by such factors as interest and favour. This apart, certain mystic knowledge would have lost without the assistance of scripting.

On the other hand, scripted art is not devoid of its own imperfection. At list, translations and transcriptions into the preferable device can hardly be perfected without tampering with certain important material. Translation and transcriptions are often riddled by this form of imperfection or inadequacy. Through this means, several relevant parts of many people’s oral tradition had been adversely affected this all important art. Communication of human thought, in general, can be achieved in many different ways, speech being only one of them. And writing, among other uses, is only one form of conveying human speech. Nevertheless, modern society appears to have exalted this distinctive form of communication. Perhaps this is partly because, as a representation of external realities, communication through graphic art seems more objective, more substantial, than linguistic communication. Even abstract notions can be transcribed graphically through this “solidifying symbolic system”. The roots of this system are to be found in human beings fundamental need to store information in order to communicate, whether to themselves or to others, at a distance in time or space. Since one knows writing only for what it is now, it is difficult – perhaps even pointless – to provide a definition of it that presumes to include all past, present and future meanings. Whether it is of utilitarian advantage to see in full writing a “system of graphic symbols that can be used to convey any and all thought” is a moot point.

Just as valid would be the equally unspecific definition of writing as “the graphic counterpart of speech, the fixing of spoken language in a permanent or semi-permanent form”. Yet this, too, seems to miss so much of what writing is about. One might accept that it is indeed the sequencing of standardized symbols (characters, signs or sign components) in order to graphically reproduce human speech, thought and other things in part or whole. This might, in fact, be the most general definition of writing possible at present. How well each system then accomplished this in the past was determined by the relative need of each society as it grew more complex. But this definition, too, remains just this: a limiting definition of something rather special that appears to resist limitation. Writing is writing, it does not matter the language which it is done, done by hands or machines with the primary intention to sustain the oral language. Through writing many nations of antiquity with evidence of ancient civilization were reckoned with without writing their activities and contribution to global civilization would be lost.

(i) Origin of Writing

The first time, in my childhood, I involved myself with the western education, we were made to know the issues connected with the pharaohs of the ancient Egypt; their mystic strength which was not comparable to that of any other nation as we were told, their enslavement of the Israelites and their earlier involvement with scripted art (even when our teacher could not tell of the nature writing Egypt had had in those promising days of her civilization), it was apparent – not only to me but all of us, students – that Egypt holds the history of writing in he world. In the later days, I heard about the form of writing that flourished in the ancient Babylonia society, known Coneiform my thought began to change a little.

Yet, with the dominance of English language which overshadowed every other languages in Nigeria (spoken or written), my idea of this history began to change gradually. I thought that what may be regarded as the mother of script would be the English language since its studies reveals the presence of the lexicon of many other languages. Unfortunately, research proved me wrong. From the book entitled, Before the Pyramids, Emily Teeter made the following observation,

The world’s earliest known writing systems emerged at more or less the same time, around 3300 BC, in Egypt and Mesopotamia (today’s Iraq). At that time, both societies reached out far beyond their borders through overland and maritime trade networks, forming common frontiers of exchange around the Levantine coast and the shores of Arabian Peninsula (P.99).

The excerpt above is bold enough; at the beginning of chapter eleven, with this assertion on the history of script. It is however obviously complicating for Teeter to assert that writing system developed simultaneously within the northern boundary; probably via trade along the coast or other forms of relationship mentionable by reason of proximity among the nations stated. Could Teeter have spoken the mind of the global population, such that hieroglyphics with it earliest presence in the scripted wall of the ancient world would be accepted as the mother of scripted art? I think not. History, of course, revealed that Nubia civilization predates Egyptian civilization, and in being of ancient reckoning, Nubia was known for Mitotic scripting. According to Diop Anta, Nubia civilization was the earliest in North Africa.

Again, Teeter had written here with certain lapses left uncovered. This is the danger of judging things holistically. A holistic approach to things put writers in a hasty conclusion about the very thing concerned. It then calls for the demand to watch one’s back. Teeter here made a very hasty conclusion, and by such, opened rooms for personal combat. At the very first line and first paragraph of this chapter (Eleven) he made the assertion that almost all the paragraphs down pages has information conflicting. The discovering in Abydos made by Flinders Petrie explained Egypt as a colony of the population which Ivan Van Setimar revealed that they had come from “Inner Africa”. Among the same set of civilizers were scribes who were believed to have deposited an earlier form of writing that is older that the hieroglyphics; a system of writing made of lines different from the over flocked pictures in the hieroglyphics. The excerpt below revealed another form of writing different from registered lines as the chapter reveals.

Especially important for the history of writing is a corpus of signs – painted at a large scale onto ceramic vessels, and incised in miniature onto perforated labels – that represent a formative stage in the emergence of the hieroglyphic writing system(P.102).

In my little thought, I do not think that such a fully developed form of painting “that represent a formative stage in the emergence of the hieroglyphic writing system” should be the offspring of hieroglyphic rather than the mother script. Therefore, if Teeter judges and proved himself wrong, it means that Egyptian script art form is not the origin of writing.

The attempts to interpret the earliest writing system found on stones in the British Isle entertained different suggestions for its origin, Done Luke said thus,

Script may have originated in Africa and been taken northward by early adventurers… this same script can be found along the Niger in West Africa because there appears to be a possible West African Scandinavian link in our findings.

Don Luke in the article, “African Presence in the Early History of British Isles and Scandinavia” published in the 1985 African Presence in the Early Europe (edt) Ivan Van Setima, was the first researcher to stressed the point that Ogam might be a West African language and contrary to the North African Basque language suggested by Barry Fell. Barry Fell, in America B.C., 1983 also suggested a similar origin for scripted art. Ogam is the earliest form of writing and communication known in the British Isles and in Scandinavia, where ancient traditions insist that it was introduced by the Druids, who, according to the indigenous traditions of the Isles, were Black African dwarfs and magicians. Research conducted by Marija Gimbutas has linked Ogam with the “Old European Script” dating back to 5,300 B.C. By this date, it is now apparent that Ogam was older ten. Example of ogam is shown below.


Associating the origin of Ogam with the Black African Dwarfs shades a little light on deciphering the original home of Ogam scrip writing. Ogam’s origin began to become clearer when similar types were found at Okigwe in the Igbo heartland and other ones among the Ikom monolith. Here in Nigeria, Ogam was the earliest form of writing in the Igbo settlement. It was ogam that gave birth to Nsibidi which is today used by the Efik and Ibibio family grouping as the language of their masquerade. But in the Igbo tribe, Ogam is not called the same name; the Igbo call it Akala, Marks. The ancient Igbo society used Akala to keep documents of their affairs with people. They used it to keep record of certain recompense either from the gods or from man. On the other hand, it was used to keep document of debtors and creditors. We can see this in Achebe’s book.

“Look at the wall… look at those lines of chalk” and Okoye saw groups of perpendicular lines drawn in chalk. There were five groups and the smallest group has ten lines… “Each group there represents a debt to someone, and each stroke is one hundred cowries” (Things, 6).

Akala was used up till the days of the colonial master in the Igbo land. My paternal grandmother who died in 1987 has several Akala at one side of her walls. Some were vertical lines and others were horizontal lines stroked on the wall in an organized manner. She also had some that had the shape of two-sided angles in a V-shape. There are some that were of X-shape and others of the shape of a quadrangle. Yet, Akala was not the origin of writing, although it was the earliest adopted scripted system. We have discussed this in chapter three above.

Ogam of Akala, as the Igbo call it, originated from figures that later became the Igbo mystic geometry for cosmological renditions. This is the mystery behind the emergence of writing. The earliest form of writing was composed of figures used to mark certain metaphysical relevance. And among these figures, the first which became prominent in Akala was a vertical stroke written in the manner a learner of the English figures would write one.  Among the Igbo, the first figure was the ordinal, Mbu, translated to mean first. Mbu is different from the cardinal Otu, Ofu, Nnake or Nnaa as Igbo general, Igbo Owere, Igbo Onitsha or Nkanu may call it respectively. In all the versions of the Igbo language, one may be dialectically pronounced, but first remains the same and realized as Mbu. This perhaps might be because of its reference to supernatural. Mbu is the symbol for the supreme deity, God in the Igbo cosmology. This forms the genesis of script art earliest used by the ancient scribes in Igbo land in the ancient time before the invention of Nsibidi. In the ancient Igbo, Umudiala were the ancient Igbo scribes. This generation of people has been identified in chapter two above as dwarfs. Their original home is the Igbo heartland from where Bantu travellers emigrated.

(ii) Scripted Arts; from Concept to Stones

The marks we have as scripted art today existed earliest as concepts used for metaphysical purposes. As scripted art, the marks were used by the dwarfs to encode activities and the personalities involved in them. As scripted art, the marks were called Akala in the Igbo setting. Our findings show that after the flood, the survived dwarfs carried the marks to the various parts of the world where they found themselves. The adaptation of this same writing form among their survival places around the world remained one veritable means of identifying their place of origin.

Igbo Ogam

Some Ogams in the British Isle

Just like hierogliphics, scholars had given time to the interpretation of Ogams using English alphabets. Initially,  Edo Nyland Ibid., 1996) an Ogam scholar, who has done much work transcribing Ogam and even coming up with an Ogam Dictionary, notes that,

Many people have tried to translate the inscriptions using the Celtic language, but without any success. Not a single genuine Ogam inscription is written in Celtic … The Celtic language did not yet exist at the time these petroglyphs were made.

The label unearthed I Abydos in the attempts towards deciphering the origin of hieroglyphic writing reveals the message below.

The label conveys its message through a combination of writing and pictorial elements,as well as formalized divisions of space. These include the use of register lines, which became increasingly standard for royal display at this time. (Before, 101).

The tablets are shown below.


Few of the transcribed Ogams are shown below,



We also found instances of Akala imprinted on stones at Anatolia Turkey where those who survived the flood in Noah’s ark were believed to have alighted. But the difference between the mark scripts displayed above and the ones found in Anatolia is that the latter appears more symbolic than mere marks stroked on stones in the manner of Ogams or Akala. The possibility of this form of writing shows that Noah and his family may have good knowledge of Ogam scripting.

(iii) From Marks to Symbols

We have noted that towards the end the first era before the flood, the Akala/mark script forms changed to a more symbolic form of writing. This form was called Nsibdi. The symbols below are Nsibidi characters. There are many others that the picture below could not contain.


The original name was Nsibiri. The later consonant d was invented by the Efik-Ibibio society where it flourished in the later days. Indigenous to peoples occupying the eastern region of Nigeria, nsibidi is more commonly associated with the Ejagham people of northern Cross River State and southwestern Cameroon, from where it is believed to have spread to surrounding ethnic groups like the Ibibios, influencing their art forms and undergoing notable transformation in the process. Among the Igbos, for instance, uri or uli graphic design is often cited as an offshoot of nsibidi. Essentially, while nsibidi does not correspond to any single spoken language, it has dismantled linguistic barriers that would otherwise prevent communication between various ethnic nationalities, thus facilitating interaction between the groups.

Nsibidi came of the knowledge of western historian when J. K. Macgregor witnessed a court section in Enyong in Cross River state where Nsibidi was used to document the proceedings in the court in 1909. In the southern Igbo land, he also encountered where Nsibidi was used to write and Igbo name.



The boy’s name was Onuoha. Macgregor related that the first and second letters are corruption of the English alphabets N and A, while the last letter was taken to him as an original Nsibidi. The few letters below have the interpretation labels stated along them.
The major reason behind the slow pace of the spread of this form of writing has been blamed on its cultic circumscription. It was used by the dwarfs greater among which were diviners and dibias of their time. It remained within them and was not taught to ordinary people. Good knowledge of Nsibidi language was only taught to members of the cult of scribes. Presently, it is used as designer pattern for Akwete textile among the Igbo, while among Efiks Nsidibe is used as the language of their masquerade. Unlike Akala/Ogam, Nsibidi’s influence on the scripts of the civilization of ancient communities far and near is a sense to note that the scripted form actually lasted longer than the former. Our research shows it influence on the Berber/Tuareg/Hausa Scriptin the Northern Nigeria and the scripts of the people in the North East and Southern Iberian were very heavy, comparing the scripts below.

                    Berber/Tuareg/Hausa Script

                       Iberian North East                                 Southern Iberian

The Iberian type of scripts was found in the Iberian Peninsula, in Southern France and in the Balearic Islands. The oldest date of ancient Iberian writing has been dated to the 4th century BC. Due to Roman invasions in the 3rd century BC, the script and the language from which it was written in were replaced with Latin lexicons.

In the later days of the Mesopotamian civilization, after the fall of Babel, some of the Sumerian tablets showed evidence of Nsibidi alphabets in their writings. In Ur (the home of the biblical Araham) for instance, found was the image of the community foundation peg of a female character whose body was designed with different alphabets of Nsibidi. The image is shown below,


(iv) From Symbols to Pictorial Scripts

 The last stage of script evolution before the invention of alphabetical letters was pictorial scripts. Pictorial scripts made use of picture relatively similar with Nsibidi. But unlike Nsibidi, pictorial scripts made use of images of their implied reference. Good examples of pictorial scripts are Coneiform and Hieroglyphics.



Hieroglyphic scripts, developed around 3000 BC., proved real picturesque in its letters. There was also a decimal system of numeration up to a million. Unlike other cultures the early picture forms were never discarded or simplified probably because they are so very lovely to look at. Hieroglyphs were called, by the Egyptians, “the words of God” and were used mainly by the priests. These painstakingly drawn symbols were great for decorating walls of temples. For conducting day to day business, there was another script known as hieratic. This was a handwriting in which the picture signs were abbreviated to the point of abstraction. Hieroglyphs are written in rows or columns and can be read from left to right or from right to left. You can distinguish the direction in which the text is to be read because the human or animal figures always face towards the beginning of the line.

The history of hieroglyphics is traced directly to Akala/Ogam system of writing. Akala writing system was adopted in Egypt by the civilizers of Egypt. The information uncovered by Emily Teeter (edt) Before the Pyramids revealed the contribution of a writing system that is made up of lines, unearthed in Abydos, which existed earlier before hieroglyphics. The picture is shown above. Above considerations, Egyptian hieroglyphics proves more picturesque than every other writing system used in the civilizations before the invention of modern alphabets such as Greek, French, English, Swahili and Igbo. The English equivalence of hieroglyphics are shown below.

The history of the current letters that formed the alphabets of the languages stated above is traced to the Greece civilization. The civilization of Ancient Greece emerged into the light of world history in the 8th century BC. Normally it is regarded as coming to an end when Greece fell to the Romans, in 146 BC. However, major Greek kingdoms lasted longer than this. As a culture (as opposed to a political force), Greek civilization lasted longer than the date

Ogam Stone Inscriptions and IGBO Column Writing A Comparison – Catherine Ocholonu


By Catherine Obianuju Acholonu

Adapted from a paper published under the title “Ogam Philosophical Language and the Lost Nation of Tilmun” in UNESCO Nigeria published booklet Reflections on Indigenous Philosophical Thought, 2008, Abuja.

Ogam Origins
Deciphering Ogam
Ogam Inscriptions

The Horse Creek Petroglyph of
West Virginia


Ogam (also spelled Ogham) was the earliest form of writing and communication known in the British Isles and in Scandinavia, where ancient traditions insist that it was introduced by the Druids, who, according to the indigenous traditions of the Isles, were Black African dwarfs and magicians. Research conducted by Marija Gimbutas has linked Ogam with the “Old European Script” dating back to 5,300 B.C. (Marija Gimbutas, The Language of the Goddess, see Ego Nyland Website, 1996). Ogam appears to have a connection with the ancient Cretan script called Linea-A (see Plate 4) which like Ogam was written in columns and strokes. Ogam inscriptions appear as etchings on thousands of stone monoliths scattered throughout Ireland. Irish scholars maintain that Ogam is much older than their native Celtic language, which is as good as saying that those who wrote Ogam lived in Ireland before the genetic ancestors of today’s Irish people appeared in the land. Edo Nyland Ibid., 1996) an Ogam scholar, who has done much work transcribing Ogam and even coming up with an Ogam Dictionary, writes:

“Many people have tried to translate the inscriptions using the Celtic language, but without any success. Not a single genuine Ogam inscription is written in Celtic…The Celtic language did not yet exist at the time these petroglyphs were made…”

In the course of conducting field research on ancient Rock Art in the West African environment, with particular emphasis on Southern Nigeria, my team found strong evidence that seemed to suggest that ancient people from Southern Nigeria who spoke a language that belonged to the Kwa linguistic family had left behind a series of enigmatic Rock inscriptions that had baffled anthropologists and historians since they were discovered in the turn of the 20th century by British colonial officials Charles Partridge (1903), P.A. Talbot (1926) and Philip Allison (1963). (Philip Allison, Cross River Monoliths, 1967). The Cross River Monoliths (Plate #1), as they have come to be known, consist of over 300 units of oval shaped basalt rock of between 3 and 6 feet in height located in villages and forests in Ikom Local government, Cross river State, Nigeria. (Catherine Acholonu, The Gram Code of African Adam, Stone Books and Cave Libraries, Reconstructing 450,000 Years of Africa’s Lost Civilizations, 2005) Ikom monoliths are listed on the World Monument Fund ‘2008 Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites’ as being over 2,000 years old. (See Plate 1; see also World Monument Fund Website http://www.wmf.org) According to Jocelyn Murray’s description of the distribution of languages on the African continent in Cultural Atlas of Africa, the Kwa group of languages is an arm of the Niger-Congo sub-family of Niger-Kordofanian spreads across half of Africa and its child the Niger-Congo is traditionally spoken in West Africa. Kwa is spoken in Southern Nigeria, Ghana, Togo and Benin Republic.

For four years, between 2001 and 2005, we worked on transcribing the Cross River monoliths and made the first breakthrough in July 2005 when we were able to translate one word of the inscriptions. It was in the course of searching for possible linkages with other stone inscriptions around the world that we stumbled upon Ogam.


Ogam has survived in Ireland, Scotland, Wales and England as the “Language of Magic”. Some samples have also been discovered in USA, notably in West Virginia. Dr. Barry Fell of Harvard University has been studying the phenomenon of the Ogam writing. (Barry Fell, “Wonderful West Virginia”, in America B.C., March, 1983) Because Ogam shares the Vowel-Consonant-Vowel (V-C-V) structure of morphemes with the Basque language, Barry Fell came to the conclusion that Ogam originated from Basque: a language used among Native Tuaregs of the Sahara regions in North Africa. But Edo Nyland (op. cit.) admits that “no one has been able to translate one single Ogam word” with or without Basque, which means that Ogam has no real affinity with the Basque Language. Ongoing research however, seems to suggest that the Akan who are of the Kwa linguistic family have numerous cultural affinities with the ancient Egyptians, Libyans and the ancient Garammante. (Eva Meryowitz, The Divine Kingship of Ghana and Ancient Egypt, 1960; Akan Traditions of Origin, 1952; Kwame Osei, The Ancient Egyptian Origins of the Akan, 1996) It is therefore quite possible that cultural transference could have occurred indirectly via Egypt and Libya, through Greece and the Aegean, to Europe. This would explain the presence of the Linea-A writing (Plate 4) in Crete. Phoenician influences as culture bearers, who traversed the seas around Africa and the rest of the ancient world, are not ruled out. Phoenicians were Canaanites and Biblical records (Genesis) maintain that Canaanites were prehistoric migrants, Hamites who left their African homeland to populate Palestine. The Akan case is not an isolated case, for emerging anthropological information would seem to suggest that the ancient speakers of the Kwa family of languages (to which the Akan belong) had migrated South from North Africa circa 4,000 years ago. This is particularly true of the Igbo and would tend to support a distant Basque connection of not only Ogam but the Kwa group of languages though this is still the subject of ongoing research. (Adiele Afigbo: The Age of Innocence, 1985; Akaolisa, H.K.: The Igbo Race, Origin and Controversies, 2003)

In the bid to translate Ogam using Basque, what Barry Fell and others did was to assign arbitrary meanings to the Ogam words they wished to translate. Since no one has really been able to break the Ogam code before now, all translations done so far by scholars have been more or less guessing exercises, and the scholars who have done this, including Fell himself have admitted failure in actually translating any Ogam word or sentence. Neither Barry Fell, nor any of the subsequent translators has seriously considered matching Ogam with any other language other than Basque. Ironically all the words transcribed from the stones by these scholars, including Fell’s own transcriptions easily give themselves away as belonging to the Niger/Congo group of West African languages which are characterized by the V-C-V structure. Most if not all of the Ogam inscriptions recorded by Barry Fell possess the Vowel-Consonant-Vowel (VCV) structure of morphemes: the distinguishing element of Niger-Congo languages, the Kwa family group in particular. This means that in Ogam as in Kwa languages, words are structured in such a way that consonants are interspaced by vowels. The assumption by Barry Fell and other Western scholars that Basque is the only language (in the world), which fits this mold, was a major error that hampered all their translations. Another problem was that Basque does not possess the letters ‘C’, ‘V’, ‘Q’ and ‘Y’ that occur in Ogam and in Kwa. Kwa languages include Yoruba, Igbo, Idoma, Igala, Ashanti and Akan languages of Nigeria and Ghana. In Igbo language ‘C’ occurs as ‘CH’, ‘Q’ as ‘KW’ while ‘Y’ and ‘V’ remain unchanged.

It was researcher Don Luke in an article titled “African Presence in the Early History of the British Isles and Scandinavia” (African Presence in Early Europe, ed. Ivan Van Sertima, 1985) that first pointed out that Ogam might be a West African language and not the North African Basque language suggested by Barry Fell. Luke argued that (Ogam) script may have originated in Africa and been taken northward by early adventurers…(for) this same script can be found along the Niger in West Africa because there appears to be a possible West African Scandinavian link in our findings.

We checked out Luke’s suggestion that there was a similar kind of writing along the Niger area and found that indeed the column writing existed among the Igbo of Southern Nigeria, which had literally been lost. Fortunately this writing (see Plate 2) was recorded in Things Fall Apart a novel by Africa’s most famous novelist Chinua Achebe (1958). A character in Things Fall Apart says, ‘Look at the wall… Look at those lines of chalk:’ and Okoye saw groups of perpendicular lines drawn in chalk. There were five groups and the smallest group has ten lines… ‘Each group there represents a debt to some one, and each stroke is one hundred cowries’. (p. 6)

Today in traditional Igbo land the column writing is only used for mathematical calculations and in negotiating bride prices, whereby sticks known as Ogu represent numbers. This is also recorded in Things Fall Apart (p. 51). The process is known as Ima Ogu. Incidentally ancient records from Ireland say that Ogam was originally rendered with sticks.

Ogam was written in the form of strokes or lines, originally on sticks and later on rock. From Edo Nyland we gather that Celtic traditions of Ireland say that Ogam means Oga-ama. Oga-ama is most likely related to Igbo equivalent Ima Ogu already described above as the custom of using sticks to communicate, for in both traditions Ogu means ‘stick’. In Igbo tradition another similar word, Ogu-ama, has a range of meanings connected with the act of using sticks for oath swearing. Thus its literal Igbo meaning would be ‘One who cannot be found guilty by ogu swearing sticks’. Accordingly, when an Igbo says, “I have Ogu.” It is a declaration of impeccability. Though the custom appears to be dying down, column writing was considered sacred, such that the sticks used in the process were imbued with a kind of scriptural potency. Other examples of the use of the column writing by Igbo elders as recorded in Achebe’s Things Fall Apart confirm that the writing was essentially a sacred activity employed by the initiates of the ozo, the cult of holy men/senators/judges as a demonstration of their holiness and their title each time they were about to embark upon the most sacred act of sharing communion which was done through the ritual breaking, sharing and eating of the kola nut: the seed of the cola acuminata tree. (Plate 2; See Chinua Achebe, Things Fall Apart, p. 5, 51) Accordingly Helen Chuwkunyere in an article titled “Oji Ezinihitte Festival in Imo State” published in Nigerian Heritage Journal (Vol. 13, 2004) wrote, “Nzu (clay chalk) is usually the first Item you offer to your guest and (it) comes before the kola nut in a powdered or solid form.” (p. 90) And P. Osuagwu in a booklet tilted The Oji Ezinihitte Cultural Festival wrote, “To the visitor, the nzu serves two purposes; he registers his visit and declares his title. The visitor marks eight lines or dots on the ground with the nzu if he is titled and four or five lines or dots if he is not.” (p. 32)


Ogam writing presumes a central axis (the stick) called the stem on both sides of which the lines are executed. (See Item 1 and 2) The description of the structure of Ogam provided by its early users indicates that the script is constructed in line with the metaphor of ‘Tree Climbing’. By way of explanation, Ogam basic structure consists of a long, central line called ‘the stem’ to which short, straight lines are added: to the right, to the left and across. The number of lines in a cluster and their positions relative to the stem, form the individual letters of the Ogam Alphabet. (See Item. 1&2) For example, one line to the right of the stem, stands for the letter ‘B’; one line to the left of the stem, stands for the letter ‘H’; two slanting lines across the stem, stand for the letter ‘G’; four slanting lines across the stem, stand for the letter ‘Z’; two straight lines across the stem, stand for the letter ‘O’, etc. (See Item. 1, No. 1 and 3). Vowels are determined by vertical or horizontal lines or dots across the stem (See Item. 1, No. 4).

Item 1

1. 2. 3. 4.

Item 2

Below is a list of Ogam codes transcribed from the original stone inscriptions by Barry Fell. Their ancient creators purposely left blank spaces where most of the vowels are supposed to be. We worked on the project for several weeks, supplying vowels for the blank spaces through the process of trial and error. The result was astounding. Also included are samples of our transcription of the Horse Creek Petroglyphs of West Virginia (Plate 3), USA, listed here as critique of Barry Fell’s translations of same using Basque, which he admits, do not make any kind of meaning in any known language. Ogam sentences we worked on are listed by the serial numbers by which they have been identified on the stones in the open and in museums as recorded by Barry Fell and Edo Nyland. Making provision for slight errors that may have occurred in the course of transcribing from the stones by Fell, we came out with the phrases listed below: Ogam sentences are listed word-by-word on the top rows, (indicating missing letters as they occur on the stones), while the corresponding Igbo words/ sentences, are listed underneath each row (Items 3-9). In Igbo and in Ogam, words and sentence-structures match with an uncanny exactitude. (Transcriptions of Ogam stone inscriptions listed here are taken from the article “Translating Ogam: Introduction to Linguistic Archaeology for Ireland”, by Edo Nyland, published on the Online, 1996. It includes his listings of Dr. Barry Fell’s transcriptions of the Horse Creek Petroglyph of West Virginia, USA), which he was able to decipher as a detailed description of a wild bison hunt (Horsecreek Petroglyph).

Item 3.

The Cille Barra Stone (Located at the Museum of Antiquities, Edinburgh, Scotland, No Serial Number):






















There are two sentences in the above list. The first sentence reads:

Nti roo ete ahu uru, eku roo ete ahu usa.

Literal translation, “When the ear constructs a palm-tree-climbing-rope (ete), there is gain for all, but when the spoon does the same, gluttony reigns”. Meaning: Those who are keen to learn and listen to advice ultimately become great assets to themselves and society; not so the gluttonous. All their efforts are motivated by greed.

The second sentence says: Ina aru oru isi aku, uru oso asi ina ari isi uta. Literal Translation: “When you work hard to lay a solid foundation, the-get-rich-quick accuse you of attempting to climbing the tip of the arrow (attempting the impossible; foolish waste of time and energy).”

Lesson: Lasting success is the result of hard work and perseverance. One poised to succeed takes no advice from lazy people and charlatans.

Item 4.

Kingulbin East # 1086

-b- -la ad- -na ach- -ko og-, -ra ade ede dane.


Igbo Reading: Ubi ala adi, ana acho iko ugu, nra adi ede ede-ana.

Literal Translation: “When farmland is scarce, no one plants creeping legumes (that spread over the farmland and stifle other plants). Eczema is no body tattoo. (It is a disease.)”

Lesson: In times of lack, luxury is unnecessary and survival is paramount. One who hides his ailment, and pretends to be well, will die in his disease. The minor discrepancy between og- and ugu at the end of the first clause, as in a few other instances below, may have occurred in the course of transcription from the stone.

Item 5.

Ballintaggert Stone

-ma aq- -qi i-i, i-a ari i-e iyi ima


Igbo Reading: Oma akwu-kwo iyi, ima-ri ihe iyi ma.

Literal Translation: “You who (claim to) know the vegetation of the riverside, do you have the river’s knowledge?”
Lesson: Literacy is not wisdom. A man’s knowledge cannot compare to that of the Eternal Being.

We have isolated in brackets the authors’ tendency to repeat the last vowels of preceding words when the next word begins with a consonant. This would tend to suggest that the sentences were meant as rhythmical incantations, which are essential attributes of magic.

Item 6.


The stone inscriptions under this heading were discovered in Horse Creek district, West Virginia, USA. Barry Fell noted that Ogam S authors of USA left behind a number of stone megaliths in New York, Massachusetts, Vermont, Pennsylvania, Virginia and New Hampshire. Archaeological dating of Ogam inscriptions in Virginia, USA, places them between 600 A.D. and 700 A.D. It is suspected that early Irish missionaries did the writings. (“Wonderful West Virginia” in Barry Fell, America B.C., March, 1983). As noted earlier, both Fell and other scholars of his school have admitted that none of the translations they have so far done has made any kind of sense or meaning. Edo Nyland has rendered a more contemporary translation of this petroglyph. Our own translations are listed here. Due to changes made by Fell in the original script, it was hard to translate some portions of the West Virginia petroglyph. However, going back as close as possible to the original, we were able to translate the middle and bottom lines fully but the top line only partially.

This translation by Dr. Catherine Acholonu deployed the Igbo Language that is a precursor of the Basque Language, and therefore the derived text does not accurately describe the wild bison hunt of the ancient Amerindians. Edo Nyland used the more evolved Basque Languagee and was successful in detailing the procedure of the hunt (Nyland’s Translation).

Item 7.

The Horse Creek Petroglyph of West Virginia (top line)

The top-line using the Igbo Language may be summarized as follows:

-r- -j- -h- -mu, -ku u-i ih- -m-, -n- -m- -k- -s-, -b- -d- -l- -k- -s- -tu u-i.
-g- -n- -m- -idi -a…

Igbo Reading: Ire eji aha emu, aku eji haa emu, one-eme aku ocha? Oba adi ele oku uzo ntu di. I ga-añu Imo n’idide…?

Literal Translation: The slanderous tongue, the wealth that finances slander, can it be called clean? The barn cannot go up in flames where there is a pile of cinders (to put out the fire). No one drinks Imo (a major river in Igbo land) with earth worms.”

Lesson: Those who seek equity must seek with clean hands. The evil we do onto others condemn us. Where there is a will, there is a way. The solutions to a person’s problems are always around him. As the river does not carry worms, so the Eternal One is beyond error. Seek and find the Eternal One (God) and live above limitations…!

Item 8.

The Horse Creek Petroglyph of West Virginia (middle line)

-m- -g- -n- -t- -l- -g-, -mi i-a at- -ge e-a an- -b- -t-



Igbo Reading: Omi aga ano otu ulo ogo, omi ina atu oge ina ana obi ete/uta.

Literal Meaning: “A well won’t last long in one house, the well that you dig in your new, permanent homestead.” Lesson: “While digging a well (domestic water bore-hole) for your new and permanent homestead, do not forget that a well serving only one family dries up quickly.”

Deeper meaning: “No man is an island. Sharing is the essence of life. Life is only worthwhile when it serves the collective good. The value of the life of the individual is measured according to his service to society.”

Item 9.

The Horse Creek Petroglyph of West Virginia (bottom line)

–b- -h- -g- -to o-i ir- -g- -l-, -g- -g- -b- -mo,

-l- ,

o-i it- -k- -di i-a ah- -f-. -ki i-o on- -d- .


Igbo Reading: Obu ahia ego ito, odi ire ego ole, ego oga ebu imo; odi ita eke, odi iga ahia ofe. Oki ilo onu ada.

Literal Meaning: “Seller of three pence worth or goods, how much will your goods fetch? Can money swallow Imo River (metaphor for the sea)? Can it kill a boa? Can it shop for groceries (do one’s chores)? An old man does not soil his body like a new born.”

Lesson: The power of money is limited to commerce. Money cannot render direct service or affect the realm of the infinite. Without human instrumentality, money is useless in the performance of actions great or small. Age confers wisdom through experience. Those better placed than others should live by example, rather than following the ignorant to do wrong.


Igbo translations of Ogam inscriptions reveal them to be proverbs and wise sayings that not only have their roots in Igbo language, but also in the current Igbo geographical environment. Frequent references to Imo, the longest River in Igbo land, and the recurrence of the Igbo word ete (palm-tree-climbing rope) lend further credence to an Igbo origin of this ancient orthography whose major distinguishing attribute, according to its ancient users, is that “Ogam is climbed as a tree is climbed”. Ogam inscription titled Kinguilben East, No. 1086, listed here as Item. 4 was particularly singled out by Barry Fell as a litmus test for a successful translation, due to the fact that it is one of the very few sentences with a succession of complete words “…ade ede dena”. This three-word phrase, which Barry Fell could hardly fit into his own translation, fitted very neatly, phonetically, structurally and semantically, into our Igbo translation. Ogam inscriptions are statements of ageless philosophies that teach universal truths and lessons of everyday life. Their metaphors, drawn from the rustic environment, emphasize the importance of hard work, patience, perseverance, sharing, giving, tolerance, and service, condemning acquisitiveness, greed and excessive self-gratification. They emphasize the need to place more premium on eternal values and less on material acquisitions; the superiority of collective good over individual comfort; the imperative power of the Eternal over the transient; natural wisdom over bookish knowledge, and above all, the indispensability of Eternal Being (God) in the affairs of man. In Ogam and in Igbo worldview the metaphor for God or Eternity is the sea or the river.


These are eternal subjects that were as relevant 3,000 years ago as they are today. These Scriptures on stone are the same philosophies and morals for which the Holy Bible, the Koran, the I-Ching and other Scriptures of other civilizations were later to be written. No wonder the Benedictine Christian monks of Ireland adopted Ogam philosophy and codes for their early missionary work. Ogam writings were transliterations (literal translations) of a West African language: a language still spoken today in Nigeria. What this means again is that the Pre-Historic inhabitants of Ireland and their Scandinavian neighbours could have originated from West Africa. It could also indicate language borrowing from pre-Historic West African colonizers, missionaries of the religion of the Druids! Irish Druids referred to Ireland as the ‘Land of Erin’, which was the etymological origin of the word Ire-land. Erin was very likely a mythical world teacher known to the Igbo as Eri, the founder of their ancient civilization, the Nri civilization. Eri is spelt Erin in Yoruba and Benin (Edo) languages, meaning ‘God’, among other things. In Yoruba language it also means ‘four’ which is the core number in Igbo cosmology. It also means ‘god of songs’, elephant: king of the jungle. Eri seems to have had links with the Yoruba ancient town of Ijesha giving rise to the terms Erin-Ijesha, Erin-Ile that mean ‘Ijesha of Eri, the place of Eri’.

It does appear that though Igbo and Yoruba branched off from the same mother language – Kwa, Igbo language might have retained more similarities with the original (proto) Kwa spoken and written by the Kwa ancestors of both peoples who might have been the inventors of Ogam. This would explain why Igbo is closer to Ogam than Yoruba. We can make this assertion because we actually attempted unsuccessfully to create Yoruba sentences out of the Ogam phrases, working with Yoruba native speakers. Their conclusion was that though individual Ogam word made several meanings in Yoruba language, each sentence needed additional conjunctions, pronouns and articles to make any kind of sense. We are hoping to elicit reactions from scholars working on Ogam to consider its possible links with other Niger-Congo languages and other languages of Sub-Saharan Africa.

Emerging facts from new research seem to strongly suggest that ancient West Africans were responsible for megalithic stone works in ancient Europe and the Americas. Thus Zecharia Sitchen, in When Time Began, Book IV of his phenomenal Earth Chronicles, wrote, that if European legends be “deemed as conveyors of historical fact, then the one about Africans coming to erect the megalithic circles at Stonehenge” in the British Isles is conveying an important piece of world history not unconnected with the same Black West Africans who created the Olmec civilization of South America around 3,000 B.C. (p. 323). Ikom monoliths (see Plate 1) of Cross River State, Nigeria have been officially listed by the World Monument Fund in its 2008 Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites (it was nominated for listing by the Acholonu research team), where it was designated as “an ancient form of writing and visual communication … dating from before 2,000 B.C.” This is an official proclamation that more than 4,000 years of Black Sub-Saharan African history is written on these stones waiting to be deciphered. By way of example, we have demonstrated in our book The Gram Code of African Adam, our step-by-step interpretation of the graphic illustration, by these ancient stone authors, of picture-equivalents of portions of Sumerian and Biblical Genesis. The creation or ordering of the planets of the Solar System, the cleaving asunder of the mother Planet Gaia and the Sumerian story of the ‘gathering of the parted waters of the firmament by the clenched fists of the Creator’ are illustrated on the monolith known as Wisdom Stone (Plate 1, below).

Plate 1: A Cross River monolith
with inscriptions

Plate 2: Samples of Igbo column writing

Ogam inscription in the shape of a bison
Plate 3: Ogam Inscription- Horse Creek Petroglyph of West Virginia discovered by Dr. Barry Fell
and deciphered by Edo Nyland as an ancient hunt for bison in West Virginia (Nyland’s Translation)

Plate 5: Map of Northern Africa showing regional location of Igbo land and also of the monoliths

Plate 4: Cretan Linea A writing


Composition of Research Team:
Catherine Acholonu – UN Forum of Arts and Culture, Nigeria
Ajay Prabhakar – UN Forum of Arts and Culture, Nigeria
Nneka Egbuna – UNESCO, Nigeria.






“All the words that researchers Edo Nyland and Dr. Barry Fell transcribed were Igbo words, which I could easily read and translate. When I told Nyland that I had translated the words he transcribed from Ogam stones he did not believe me at first. When Hugo Kennes found my work on the Internet and started informing all the Ogam researchers he knew including Nyland, Nyland asked him to get an Igbo dictionary from me.  After a meeting with Pellech in Belgium, she convinced me to write further details for her site, and that led to my doing the Igbo Ogam VCV Dictionary.”  [Please also see New York Times article].

“Nyland’s use of the word Saharan might not be too far off the mark. However, he did not check West Africa, which has language links with North Africa because the direction of migrations from the Niger has been both northward and southward through the Ages. For example the Berber etymology of Barbarian is related to Igbo in the sense that (according to Herodotus) the word means ‘stranger’. Igbo

word for “Stranger” is “Obiarabia.”


“My thesis is that Egypt was the main outpost from where West African Kwa (Kwush/Kush) culture was exported to the rest of the world. Igbo is the Mega-Kwa language – the Kushite mother-language. Kush is the major bearer of this civilization. Ethiopia was not just an East Africa location, but lay West too. According to Homer, it was in Sunset Ethiopia that the Gods congregated, and the people were called “the Blameless Ethiopians in whose land the gods held banquets”. We have discovered the lost city of this Pre-historic Civilization, with its array of beautiful bronze and pottery works lost to living memory and posing an Enigma to African and World History.”


“My analyses of the early archaeology of Sumer and of the Akkadian/Sumerian/Canaanite (Semitic) languages shows that all of them without exception were children of the Igbo language and that the earliest inhabitants of Sumer had Igbo lifestyles in religion, architecture, clothing, etc., even in the recipe for soap-making (wood-ash/potash boiled in oil).”


Igbo is in the family of Niger-Congo languages called Kwa by European linguists, which includes many Nigerian and West African languages like Ashanti, Akan, Yoruba and Benin (Edo). Igbo, I find to be closest to the original mother of that language family. In fact my finding is that in order to not let the Igbo know that it was their language that birthed the others, the linguists invented the word Kwa, which was originated from Akwa Nshi (Igbo for ‘First People’, also the local name of the Nigerian monoliths that represent First People on the planet). This word was used also by the ancient Egyptians to describe the West African, in fact Igbo-speaking, Sea People (Kwush, see Martin Bernal – Black Athena ) who brought civilization to the Aegean and the Levant during the Hyksos (which means ‘Kwush’) Exodus. Kwush, also pronounced Kush means in Semitic and in Igbo ‘People of the Esh/Eshi’. Eshi are the so-called ‘Blameless Ethiopians’ of Homer. In Sumer and in Igbo, the word meant ‘Righteous/Sons of God/Descendants of the Adama (see The Nag Hammadi Scriptures and the Torah). Adam was Adama before the Fall. After he fell he became Adam, a word, which in Igbo means ‘I have Fallen’. Today in Igbo land we still have the descendants of the Immortal First People. They have never ceased to go by Adam’s original name – ‘Adama’. They are the Land Chiefs in Igbo land.”


Biblical Kush was named after the Ikwu Eshi/Kwush. Ikwu Eshi literally means in Igbo – ‘Descendant/Lineage of the Eshi’.”

“The Sea People were related to the Hebrews. They all spoke Semitic languages. They were the founders of Greece, Crete, Troy, and Rome. They were the Carians, Danaans, Acheans, and Myceneans, not excluding the Hittites. The writing systems they gave to Crete and early Middle East have been mostly found on the Igbo Ukwu excavated artifacts (see The Lost Testament), while the surviving words from their period had many Igbo cognates. Their exodus began in Egypt, remember? And Egypt, according to our findings was an outpost of an originally West African civilization in the time of Osiris (10,000 B.C.), whose Nigerian equivalent bore the Ogam scarifications on his face as his personal signature. We have found many hieroglyphs and pyramid symbols of Egypt on body adornments of ancient Nigerian gods and monuments.”

“Ogam was a writing system, not a language. Ancient Africans had other writing forms, too. Egyptian hieroglyphics was not a language; it was a writing system that could only be read correctly and meaningfully if you know the language. In this case, Igbo, the original Kwa.”


– – – – – – – – – – –


The 2013 book Acholonu, Catherine Oianuju & Sidney Louis Davis, Jr.  2013.  Eden in Sumer on the Niger– Archeological, Linguistic and Gnetic Evidence of 450,000 years of Atlantis, Eden and Sumer in West Africa.  (A sequel to “The Gram Code of African Adam“, “They lived Before Adam” & “The Lost Testament of The Ancestors of Adam“). [provides archeological, linguistic, genetic and recorded evidence of the West African origin of mankind, language, religion, culture and civilization.  It also gives multidisciplinary evidence of the actual geographical locations in West Africa of the Garden of Eden, Atlantis, and the original homeland of the Sumerian people before their migration to the Middle East.


By translating the hitherto unknown pre-cuneiform inscriptions of the Sumerians, the layers of thousands of years of Africa’s lost pre-history have been brought to the fore.  The identity is revealed of the West African villages, tribes and clans that supplied the Pharaohs of Egypt, and African faces are placed on the African kings of Sumer’s Akkad, Ur, Uruk, Mesopotamia, even the Indus Valley- all products of the original African home of the Sumerians.


Also identified are that the Sahara, the most extensive desert in the world, was the location of the lost nation of Atlantis, which was destroyed in 11,000 BC.  Details are given of Magan and Meluhha, the most famous port cities of Sumer, before they were destroyed circa 2,000 BC by “The Seven Awesome Weapons” of the Annunaki.

Answers are given to the all lingering questions about the African cavemen (Igbos/Esh/Adamas/Adites) who gave the world civilization and donated their genes for the creation of the Homo sapiens Adam and were the teachers and guardians of the entire human race.




Igbo ULI & Vodou VeVe Twin Symbols

“ Uli ”

In Igboland, ULI was a feminine art form and a form of graphic communication. Uli, uri, and urie are dialect variations in the Igbo language that describe either body or wall/mural painting in a local village setting. However, in Igboland the art of applying uli to the body is not referred to as painting, since brushes are not used. Instead the phrase ide uli (to write uli) or ise uli (to draw uli) is more appropriate (Smith, 24). For the purpose of this article and consistency, I will refer to the art form as simply “Uli” or “Uli painting”.

With uli paintings, women used their skin as portable canvases where different designs were painted that defined a woman’s body as well as her social standing within society. Uli symbols and patterns were also painted on the walls of dwellings, compounds, and communal shrines. In Sarah Margaret Adams’s 2002 PhD dissertation for Yale, Hand to Hand: Uli Body and Wall Painting and Artistic Identity in Southeastern Nigeria she states “uli body painting may predate wall painting, the hypothesis being that since the Igbo were nomadic before they became settled and agrarian, women must have originally painted on their bodies and then transferred the art to walls when they ultimately settled” While the designs and compositional forms varied from village to village, the script of uli held the same importance throughout the Igbo culture.The symbols used by Igbo women artists represented things of physical importance and were intended to beautify the female body as beauty was equated with morality in Igbo culture.

Indigenous Afrikan Spiritual Science – Haki Kweli Shakur

In addition to being portable canvases, girls who had just left a ‘fattening room’ were covered with uli designs. Fattening rooms within the Yoruba culture are where young women were secluded in preparation for marriage. This seclusion usually lasted for about three months during which they were instructed on sexual, religious, and domestic matters and taught how to be good wives and mothers. When girls were ready to leave the fattening room their bodies were painted with uli. The designs enhanced specific aspects of their character and physical strengths, which were looked for by future husbands as indications of potential financial success. Key areas of the designs included the neck, which symbolized beauty and strength, the public hair, which was a sign of fertility and the legs, a symbol of strength.

The primary source for the liquid dye in uli is from the Rothmania hispida (uli okorobian) or Rothmania whitfieldi (uli oba or uli nkpo). Pods were collected from these trees and then women would grind them on a stone slav or hard surface. This would then reveal a fleshy pulp containing crushed seeds. The mixture of the pulp and sees was squeezed through cotton wool cloth producing a light yellowish liquid, which is Uli (Willis, 44). Before the uli was applied, the body had to be properly prepared. An uli artist would first shave unwanted body hair and then rub the body with powered camwood called ufie. Ufi was used to make the skin cool and smooth. It also prevented perspiration that could cause smudges as the uli was painted on. Once the uli was applied, the final step was to rub palm oil on the skin making it soft. The Uli usually lasted for about 4 to 8 days.

Vodou ( Voodoo ) The Misunderstanding of The Universal System – Haki Kweli Shakur

3Despite the beauty of uli, many African women including Igbo women may be completely oblivious to the existence of this art form. The imposition of Western and European values on Igbo cultural practices suppressed the art form. Missionaries and Western religious groups insisted that women not cover their bodies with black designs, but rather with cloth. They viewed uli as primitive and inappropriate. Sadly, this led to a period of decline in uli practice, and the art form soon became antiquated.

A veve (also spelled vèvè or vevè) is a religious symbol commonly used in different branches of voodoo throughout the African diaspora such as Haitian voodoo. Veves should not be confused with the patipembas used in Palo or the pontos riscados used in Umbanda and Quimbanda since these are separate African religions. The veve acts as a “beacon” for the Loa, and will serve as a loa’s representation during rituals.


Their origin is unknown and conflicting. A few have thought that the veve was derived from the beliefs of the Indigenous Taíno people, but it is commonly believed to have possibly originated from the cosmogram of the Kongo people, or originated as the Nsibidi system of writing for the Igboid and Ekoid languages from West and Central Africa.


According to Milo Rigaud “The veves represent figures of the astral forces… In the course of Vodou ceremonies, the reproduction of the astral forces represented by the veves obliges the loas… to descend to earth.”

Every loa has his or her own unique veve, although regional differences have led to different veves for the same loa in some cases. Sacrifices and offerings are usually placed upon them, with food and drink being most commonly used.

In ritual and other formalities, veve is usually drawn on the floor by strewing a powder-like substance, commonly cornmeal, wheat flour, bark, red brick powder, or gunpowder, though the material depends entirely upon the ritual. In Haitian Vodou, a mixture of cornmeal and wood ash is used.

Veve can be made into screenprint, painting, patchwork etc., as wall hangings, artworks, and banners.

Haki Kweli Shakur







Nsibidi The Igbo Ancient Script Older Then CiKam ( Egypt ) Hieroglyphics!

Nsibidi (5000 B.C. – present)

Nsibidi is an ancient script used to write various languages in West Central Africa. Most notably used by the Uguakima and Ejagham (Ekoi) people of Nigeria and Cameroon, nsibidi is also used by the nearby Ebe, Efik, Ibibio, Igbo and Uyanga people.

The nsibidi set of symbols is independent of Roman, Latin or Arabic influence, and is believed by some scholars to date back to 5000 B.C

Nsibidi: Indigenous African Inscription An ancient system of artistic symbols, nsibidi (also referred to as nsibiri, nchibiddi or nchibiddy) debunks the notion that information dissemination in precolonial Africa was accomplished only through oral traditional channels. Being Africa’s oldest scripted form besides  hieroglyphics, nsibidi has been used to document history, celebrate the people’s heritage, instruct values, reinforce communication, deliberate on key issues and resolve conflicts. Though it is indigenous to peoples occupying the southeastern region of modern Nigeria, nsibidi is more commonly associated with the Ejagham people of northern Cross River State and southwestern Cameroon, from where it is believed to have spread to surrounding ethnic groups like the Ibibios, Efiks and Igbos, influencing their art forms and undergoing notable transformation in the process. Among the Igbos, for instance, uri or uli graphic design is often cited as an offshoot of nsibidi.

The Ogam/ Igbo Ukwu / Kwa Ancestors Dedicated to Catherine Ocholonu – Haki Kweli Shakur

Essentially, while nsibidi does not correspond to any single spoken language, it has dismantled linguistic barriers that would otherwise prevent communication between various ethnic nationalities, thus facilitating interaction between the groups. In its basic form nsibidi relies on abstract and pictographic signs. More specifically, it comprises representations of words and morphemes (logography) as well as representations of ideas and concepts (ideography), which form an extensive vocabulary storehouse. There are thousands of nsibidi signs covering a range of topics and emotions, including romance, warfare, sacred secrets and rites, social institutions, gender relations, family structures and legal hierarchies.

In addition to delineating the human condition, nsibidi serves as a pathway to understanding the linguistic patterns of cultures that have developed and utilized the model. Though there is no agreed or confirmed agreement on its source and meaning, nsibidi is believed to be several centuries old. Its icons have been found on excavated pottery, ceramic artefacts and headrests dating back to periods ranging between 400 and 1400 CE in the Calabar area of Cross River State. They also appear on walls and buildings, calabashes, swords, brassware, textiles, masquerade costumes, wood and bronze carvings and on human skin as tattoo designs. Interestingly, nsibidi imprints have also been etched on the ground as a means of prompt information dissemination, and have sometimes been outlined through symbolic gestures depicted aerially. One origin theory curiously claims that nsibidi was devised and taught to respective peoples by baboons (see Macgregor, “Some Notes on Nsibidi”).


Another school of thought traces its meaning to the Ekoid languages (a range of dialects like Ekajuk and Ejagham spoken mainly in southeastern Nigeria and adjacent Cameroonian regions) where it purportedly means “cruel letter.” The latter is a direct reference to the strict and “cruel” policies adopted by secret societies that customarily had profound knowledge of the practice. Researchers have been particularly adamant about the initial and primary use of nsibidi by members of the Ekpe (leopard) secret society (also known as Ngbe or Egbo), which exists among the Ekois, Efiks, Annangs, Ibibios and Igbos, and in neighboring communities. Wielding extensive political and commercial influence, the leopard society held legislative, judicial and executive powers prior to colonization. Studies show that its members possessed and guarded deeper understanding of nsibidi even though the general public utilized its motifs to various degrees.

The nsibidi-layered Ukara cloth of the Ekpe society, for instance, signals the wealth, influence and power of titled men and post-menopausal women. Sometimes tied around the waist as a wrapper, large pieces of the cloth are also used to decorate society meeting rooms on special occasions. Nsibidi visuals that typically appear on the cloth include abstract geometric and organic shapes, as well as more recognizable images like that of the leopard, its claws, the crocodile, the lizard, drums, gongs, staffs, feathers and manilla currency, all of which allude to wealth, authority and beauty.

Once taught in schools, nsibidi has experienced significant decline in appreciation and use resulting from the colonial emphasis on Western education and Christian conversation. However, efforts are being made by pro-African scholars to revive information and knowledge of the medium. Today, secret society members are conspicuously among surviving nsibidi-literates and cryptographers, and continue to ensure that this expressive, pictorial mode is preserved in modern society. Just as several African cultural and artistic paradigms were transported to the New World via the transatlantic slave trade, nsibidi was also carried to Cuba and Haiti where it has survived and evolved into anaforuana and veve iconic representations.

Igbo is considered an agglutinative language. A number of affixed phonemes denote the tense of a verb in addition to the other modifications of a verb root; an example using òjéḿbà, “traveller”, can be split into the morphemes: ò, pronoun for animate and inanimate objects or “he, she”, jé verb meaning “travel, walk, embark”, ḿbà “town, city, country, foreign lands, abroad” resulting in “he/she/it-go[es]-abroad”.

Nouns in Igbo have no grammatical number and there are no gendered pronouns or objects. Igbo grammar generally maintains a subject–verb–object clause order; mádụ̀ àbụ́ghị̀ chúkwú, “human[s]-[it]is[not]-God”, “man is not God”. Adjectives in Igbo are post-modifiers, although there are very few Igbo adjectives in the closed class; many so called “adjectives” in Igbo are considered nouns, especially when the word is a pre-modifier like im ágádí nwóké transliterated as “elderly man”. Igbo features vowel harmony between two vowels and commonly features vowel assimilation where a preceding vowel influences the articulation (or the elision with /a/) of the next such as in ǹk’â, “this one”, analysed as ǹkè “of” and â “this”. Igbo syllable shapes are CV (consonant, vowel) which is the most common, V, and N which are syllabic nasals, there are also semi vowels like /CjV/ in the word bìá (/bjá/) “come” and /CwV/ in gwú /ɡʷú/ “swim”.

Addressing people

Using special greetings when addressing elders of the society and those generally significantly older than you is expected in Igbo society. In smaller communities such as villages, it is also expected of non-elders to greet every elder whenever you first see them in a day. Here are some of the greetings used between different levels of the society.


kèdú (kay-DOO)
the most common formal greeting equivalent to ‘hello’
ǹdêwó (in-DAY-WOAH)
A formal greeting that can be used to greet anyone
má-ḿmá (MAHM-MA)
this is the most common polite term when addressing an elder or important person in society, this is used alongside the persons name and an honorific
ǹnộ (in-NOORE)
a greeting mostly used in the northern part of Igboland

ǹdâ (in-DAH)
can be an equivalent of ‘what’s up’
ánị̄ (AH-NEE)
more direct, used only by friends, insulting if used on someone older than the greeter
ọ̀lị́à (aw-LEE-yah)
more direct, mostly from a friend to a friend
ọ̀gị́nị́ kwánụ́/gị́nị́ mẹ̀rẹ̀ (aw-GEE-NEE KU-WA-NOO/GEE-NEE meh-reh)
very direct and informal, literally ‘what’s happening’.

There are greetings usually made to a group of people which can also be used to boost morale.

Kwénù (QUAY-noo)
The most common group greeting, used only by males.
Dǎlụ́’nụ̀ (DAH-LOO nooh)
Meaning literally ‘thank you all’, this can be used by anybody.

In Igbo society there are different ways of addressing people depending on their status in society. In order to show good manners and politeness, Igbo speakers are expected to use honorifics to address those that are significantly older than them (usually those old enough to be an uncle or grandparent, sure enough ‘uncle’ is sometimes used as an honorific). Here are some of the basic honorifics used in Igbo society.

māzị́- (MAH-ZEE)
The most basic honorific for males, about equivalent to Mister. Mazi Ibekwe: Mister Ibekwe
dâ- (DAH)
The most basic honorific for females, about equivalent to Misses, Miss, and most similar to madam or ma’am. Da Mgbechi: Madam Mgbechi
dê-dè- (DEH-deh)
Another honorific for males, usually used in an informal setting, may be seen as the male equivalent of ‘da’, it has no equivalent in English, but is similar to saying ‘big brother’. It is usually shortened to ‘de’.
ìchíè- (ee-CHEE-ye)
literally elder, used to address male elders.
ńzè- (IN-zay)
a noble title for males found in the northern parts of Igboland.
lộlọ̀- (LOH-loh) can be interpreted as ‘dane’ or ‘dutchess’, a title given to the wife of a titled man. For those younger than yourself, they can be called by their gender, ‘nwóké’ male or ‘nwânyị̀’ female, or by ‘nwá’ (WAHN) meaning child. This form of address can be patronising.

Common signs
Although most signs in the Igbo-speaking areas of Nigeria may be in English, it will still be helpful to learn some of these signs in case you find your self in a more rural community.

Mèpè (may-pay)
M’Mèchi (MAY-chi-EH-LE)
Ọ̀bụ̀bà (aw-boo-ba)
ífụ́fụ́ / Úzọ Èzí (MM-FUH-FUH / OO-zor AY-ZEE)
Núo (NOO)
Dúọ̌ (DOOR)
kpóchíe (IM-paw-SI)
Umunwóke (OO-MOO-wow-KAY)
Umunwañyi (OO-MOO-wa-yi)
Ihe Nsọ (I-HYEAH IN-saw)

Ndêwó. (in-DEEH-WO)
Hello. (informal)
Kèdú. (keh-DO)
Hello. (casual)
Ǹdâ. (in-DAH)
Nnộ (in-NOOR)
How are you?
Kèdú kà ímẹ̀rẹ̀? (keh-DOO kah E meh-reh)
How are you (Informal) Kedu
Fine, thank you.
A dị̀ ḿmá,ị̀melâ (AW dee IM-MA)
What is your name?
Kèdú áhà gị́? (keh-DO AH-ha GEE)
My name is ______ .
Áhàm bụ̀ ______, or Áfàm bụ̀ (: AH-ham boo _____ .)
Nice to meet you.
Obu ihe obi uto imata gi. (obuu ehe obi uu’to ima ta gi)
Bīkó. (BEE-COE)
Thank you.
Dālụ́/Imẹ̄lá. (DAA-LOO/EE-MEH-LAH)
You’re welcome.
Bàtà wà. (Ba ta waa)
Éey, Ëhh. (ey, AEH)
Ḿbà . (IM-bah)
Excuse me. (getting attention)
Chere, chètú. (Chey rey, CHE-too)
Excuse me. (begging pardon)
isi Gini, é weli íwé. (ishi gi ni, A WELLI E-WAY)
I’m sorry.
Ndo; Gbághàrám. (in-DOH, BA-gah-RAM)
Kà ómésíá. (kah O-MEH-SI-YA)
Goodbye (informal)
ányị́ ga hú. (Anyi i, gaa ahU)
I can’t speak Igbo [well].
A’naghi’m a sú Igbo [ọfuma]. (AH na yim AH sue EEG-BOW [AW-FOO-MAH])
Do you speak English?
ị́ na-sú Bèké ? (EE na SOO BAY-KAY?)
Is there someone here who speaks English?
Ọ di onye nọ nga nweríke ị́súfù bèké? (OR dee on-yeh NOR in-GAH weh-RI-KI SUH-foo beh-KEH?)
Nyerem áká! (NYEM AH-KAH)
Look out!
Lèpu kwá anya! (LAY-MA KWA)
Good morning.
Ibọla chi. (e BORLA CHI)
Good evening.
mgbede ọma . (MM-GBAYDAY oma’a)
Good night.
Kà chí bọ̌. (ka CHI BAW)
I don’t understand.
À ghọ́tàghìm. (ah GAW-tah-gim)
Where is the toilet?
Kéé ébé uló mpósi dì? (keh EH BEH MM-K-PO-CHEE dee)

Body parts

ísí (EE-SEE)
íhú (EE-HUE)
ányá (AHN-YAH)
ńtị̀ (IN-tih)
ímí (EE-MEE)
ákpị̀rị́ (AHK-pee-REE)
àgbà (ahg-bah)
ólú (OH-LOO)
úbú (OO-BOO)
ugwùlùgwù (ooh-gwoo-loo-gwoo)
úkwù (OO-kwoo)
ihü áká (EE-HUE AH-KAH)
nkwekọ áká (nn-kweh-koh AH-KAH)
m̀kpị́sị́ áká (mm-KPEE-SEE AH-KAH)
áká (AH-KAH)
ǹkù áká (in-koo AH-KAH)
ị́kẹ̀ (EE-keh)
àkpàtà (ahk-pah-tah)
íkpèrè (EEK-peh-reh)
úkwụ (OO-KOOH)
ọ̀kpà (oh-k-pah)

Leave me alone.
Hafum áká. (HAH-foom AH-KAH)
Don’t touch me!
É mètùla’m áka! (EH meh-tu-lam AH-KAH)
I’ll call the police.
M ga kpọrọ ndi ùwé oji. (M gị́ POR in-di u-WEH OH-JI-)
Polị́sị́/Uwè ojị́ị́! (poe-LEE-see/OO-way oh-JEE!)
Stop! Thief!
Kwushí! Onye óshị́/ohi! (koo-shee! OH-NYE OH-shi)
I need your help.
Á chorom kí nyérém àkà. (AH chom kee nyeah-m AH-KAH)
It’s an emergency.
Ọ bu ihé ọsịsọ. (OR boo i-he OH-si-sor)
I’m lost.
À mághi’m ébé’m nọr. (AH MAH-gim EH-BEH-m NOR)
I lost my bag.
Akpám è fuólé. (ak-pam EH FU-OH-lay)
I lost my wallet.
Àkpà égóm è fuólé. (ak-pah EH-GOME eh FU-OH-LAY)
I’m sick.
Àhụ nà anwụm. (ah-HOO NAH woom)
I’ve been injured.
Á meruolam àhú. (AH MEH-RU-AW-LAM ah-hoo)
I need a doctor.
Onye ògwò orịá ka mu n’achọ. (OH-yeh OH-gw-oh OH-ri-ya KAM chor)
Can I use your phone?
M nwèríke iweretu fonu gí? (IM weh-RI-Ke iwee re-Tu fo-nu GEE)

1 One
Ótù (OH-too)
2 Two
Àbụ́ọ́ (ah-BWORE)
3 Three
Àtọ́ (ah-TOH)
4 Four
Ànọ́ (ah-NORE)
5 Five
Ìsé (ee-SAY)
6 Six
Ìsî (ee-SEE-ee)
7 Seven
Àsâ (ah-SAH-ah)
8 Eight
Àsátọ́ (ah-SAH-TAW)
9 Nine
Ìtôlú (ee-TOE-LOO)
10 Ten
Ìrí (ee-REE)
11 Eleven
Ìrí nà ótù (ee-REE nah OH-too)
12 Twelve
Ìrí nà àbụ́ọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-BWORE)
13 Thirteen
Ìrí nà àtọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-TOH)
14 Fourteen
Ìrí nà ànọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-NORE)
15 Fifteen
Ìrí nà isé (ee-REE nah ee-SAY)
16 Sixteen
Ìrí nà ìsî (ee-REE nah ee-SEE-e)
17 Seventeen
Ìrí nà àsâ (ee-REE nah ah-SAH-ah)
18 Eighteen
Ìrí nà àsátọ́ (ee-REE nah ah-SAH-toh)
19 Nineteen
Ìrí nà Ìtôlú (ee-REE nah ee-TOE-LOO)
20 Twenty
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ / Ọ́gụ́ (ee-REE ah-BWORE / AW-GUH)
21 Twenty one
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na ótù (ee-REE ah-BWORE nah OH-too)
22 Twenty two
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na àbụ́ọ́ (ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-BWORE)
23 Twenty three
Ìrí àbụ́ọ́ na àtọ́ (ee-REE ah-BWORE nah ah-TOH)
30 Thirty
Ìrí àtọ́ (ee-REE ah-TOH)
40 Forty
Ìrí ànọ́ / Ọ́gụ́ àbụ́ọ́ (ee-REE ah-NORE / AW-GUH ah-BWORE)
50 Fifty
Ìrí ìsé (ee-REE ee-SAY)
60 Sixty
Ìrí ìsî (ee-REE EE-SEE-e)
70 Seventy
Ìrí àsâ (ee-REE ah-SAH-ah)
80 Eighty
Ìrí àsátọ́ (ee-REE ah-SAH-toh)
90 Ninety
Ìrí Ìtôlú (ee-REE ee-TOE-LOO)
100 Hundred
Ńnárị́ / Ọ́gụ́ ìsé (IN-NAH-REE / AW-GUH ee-SAY)
200 Two hundred
Ńnárị́ àbụ́ọ́ (IN-NAH-REE ah-BWORE)
300 Three hundred
Ńnárị́ àtọ́ (IN-NAH-REE ah-TOH)
400 Four hundred
Ńnárị́ ànọ́ / Ńnụ̀ (in-NAH-REE ah-NORE / IN-nuh)
1000 Thousand
Púkú (POO-KOO)
2000 Two Thousand
Púkú àbụ́ọ́ (POO-KOO ah-BWORE)
3000 Three Thousand
Púkú àtọ́ (POO-KOO ah-TOH)
10,000 Ten Thousand
Púkú ìrí (POO-KOO ee-RE)
100,000 A hundred thousand
Púkú ńnárí (POO-KOO IN-NAH-REE)
1,000,000 Million
Ńdè (IN-day)
100,000,000 A hundred million
Ńdè ńnárí (IN-day IN-NAH-REE)
1,000,000,000 Billion
Ìjérí (ee-JAY-REE)

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Gullah Jack Lead Igbo, Angolan, Kongo Slaves through spiritual and armed campaigns to Free Denmark Vesey July 1822 South Carolina

July 2nd 1822 New Afrikan Gullah Jack a Obeah Priest & Freedom Fighter Up until the day Denmark Vesey was hanged attempted to Free Denmark Vesey , He tried to ignite the Districts Angolan/Kongo & Igbo Slaves through spiritual rituals to arm themselves to attempt the desperate rescue of Denmark Vesey to continue the mission! July 2nd The first six to be hanged was Vesey, Poyas, The three bennetts , and Jesse Blackwood , it was said two of them even laughed when first brought out the jail they conveyed this till they was giving the rope of execution Remember these ancestors Name! Can’t Get The Spirituality without the Warrior, Can’t Get The Warrior without The Spirituality!

The K.Kinte Show Season 6 Origin of The Term Black Power RVA 1919, John Mitchell Jr , and The Origins And Power of Vodoun ( Voodoo ) With Guest Haki Kweli Shakur


Gullah Jack was Executed July 12, 1822 also known as Couter Jack and sometimes referred to as “Gullah” Jack Pritchard, was an African conjurer, who is historically known for aiding Denmark Vesey in planning a large Maafa (slavery) rebellion that would become known as Denmark Vesey Conspiracy of 1822.

Indigenous Spiritual Science ( Spirituality Didn’t Start in a Book ) – Haki Kweli Shakur

Gullah Jack was African born and purchased as a prisoner of war at Zanguebar (later Zaanzibar) on Africa’s eastern shores by Zephaniah Kinsley in the early nineteenth century. Gullah Jack was allowed to take a bag aboard ship which he always kept with him. Approximately forty people escaped or were taken prisoners in the 1812 Seminole raid on the Kinsley plantation where Gullah Jack was enslaved. He was among the group that eventually ended up in Charleston, South Carolina. In 1821, Paul Pritchard purchased him there.

A short man with bushy side whiskers who acted ‘artful’ for whytes, Gullah Jack had perfected the ‘shuck-and-jive’ persona. He was a member of the AME church that Denmark Vesey attended. Just after Christmas 1821, Vesey recruited Gullah Jack to be one of his lieutenants. Gullah Jack was a conjurer and known among Blacks as “the little man who can’t be killed.” He had a reputation as a powerful root doctor who was skilled in the uses of herbs for medicine or poison and able to create powerful protective amulets against evil. He also represented an Angolan company called the “Gullah Company” or the “Gullah Society.”

Gullah Jack was instrumental in spreading the message of Denmark’s plan to seize the city of Charleston, kill most of the whytes, and, if necessary, escape to the Caribbean, supposedly, to Haiti. He recruited African-born men as soldiers for the revolution and gave the recruits African religious symbols to guarantee victory against the “buckra” (whytes). He instructed his faithful to only eat parched corn and ground nuts on the day of the attack and gave them crab claws to hold in their mouths as they attacked, to keep them from being wounded. He is also said to have used his spiritual powers to terrify others into keeping silent about the conspiracy. Historians believe Jack’s strong African culture, contrasted against Vesey’s preaching, helped attract many of the enslaved that joined the revolt.

The plan was betrayed and Gullah Jack was captured on July 5, 1822. At his trial Gullah Jack played the fool so much that some of the judges could not believe he was part of the rebellion. However, as the trial progressed and six witnessed testified against him, Jack’s demeanor changed. He scowled and gave his accusers hard looks. He made motions and designs with his fingers until the judges admonished him for trying to bewitch the witnesses. Testimony from his trial mention that he requested an extension on his life for one or two weeks. However, he was condemned to death and hung on July 12, 1822. He is still remembered and admired in the Gullah/Geechee nation.

Haki Kweli Shakur ATC – NAPLA NAIM 7-2-53 ADM

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