Farrakhan was born with the name Louis Eugene Walcott in Roxbury, Massachusetts. He performed as a calypso singer under the name The Charmer. In 1955 he was inspired by Malcolm X to join the Nation of Islam, and he took the name Louis X. He headed the Nation of Islam's Harlem Mosque from 1965 to 1975, and became head of the movement in 1977.
Farrakahan has been a prominent voice in favor of racial segregation. He said that white people were the product of genetic experiments performed by negro scientists, and will rule the earth for 6,000 years before being 'crushed by the black gods'.