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As Malcolm X’s Daughters Feud, a Trove Stays Hidden

Dr. Betty Shabazz, widow of Malcolm X, passed away in 1997, three weeks after suffering extensive burns in a house fire set by one of her grandsons.

There was no will found and now the six daughters of Malcolm X and Sister Betty are at odds over their mother’s $1.4 million estate.

It is reported that a collection of unpublished works of Malcolm X and Dr. Betty is worth a greater value than the estate but an agreement between the daughters must be settled before the writings can be released.

The writings include four journals that Malcolm X kept during trips to Africa and the Middle East in 1964, a year before his assassination.

The matter of her estate moved to Surrogate’s Court, and the battle has gone on for more than a decade.

According to The New York Times, the first public indication of problems with the estate began in 2002, after a collection of Malcolm X items turned up at Butterfields, the San Francisco auction house.

Daughter, Malikah Shabazz was accused of taking some of her father’s unpublished writings to Florida without permission.

The estate had to pay more than $300,000 to get the items back, Joseph Fleming, the former lawyer for Ilyasah and Malaak Shabazz, wrote in a court petition in 2004.

Hopefully the daughters can come to an agreement and these journals can be released to the public one day.