Nuwaubian Nation of Moors

| Profile | Beliefs | Controversies | Links | Bibliography |


    I. Group Profile

    1. Name: Nuwaubian Nation of Moors (also known as the Yamassee Native American Tribe, Ansaru Allah Community, and the Ancient and Mystic Order of Malchizedek)1.

    2. Founder: Born Dwight York. Currently he goes by the name Dr. Michael Z. York, but has also be know by several other names including Malachi York, Chief Black Eagle, [complete list]1.

    3. Date of Birth: June 26, 19452. [Time is better than freedomofmind, but is this information not available on one of the Nauwaubian page?]

    4. Birth Place: Sullivan County, N.Y.2

    5. Year Founded: 1993, Eatonton (Putnam County), Georgia.2

    6. History:

      In 1967, using the name Amunnnubi Rooakhptah, York started his first mission in Brooklyn, New York. It was called Ansaar Pure Sufi. The group wore black tunics as their official garb. In 1969, the group began wearing African robes and renamed themselves the Nubian Islamic Hebrews. York went to Sudan until 1972, when he returned to teach the Nubians, however now they were renamed the Ansaru Allah Community. This group followed Orthodox Islam beliefs and dressed in traditional Islamic garb3.

      In 1993, York purchased a 476 acre game ranch in Eatonton, Georgia. Approximately 400 followers moved to Georgia with York. The group was once again renamed, The United Nuwaubian Nation of Moors. This group claimed to be part of a Native-American tribe from Georgia called the Yamassee. The Nuwaubians claim that they are ancestors of Egyptians who migrated from the Nile Valley to the Georgia countryside prior to the continental drift that separated the continents. These Egyptian migrants came known to be the Yamassee Native Americans. The Nuwaubians have attempted to use their ancestoral lineage to the Yamassee as a basis for obtaining sovereignty from the United States government2.

      The name of the Nuwaubians home is Tama-re, or the "Egypt of the West." At the entrance of Tama-re there is a large sign that recognizes the Nuwaubians as a fraternity, Lodge 19 of the Ancient Mystic Order of Melchizedek. Armed guards stand at the entrance to Tama-re. Approximately 100 Nuwaubians live within 15 double-wide trailers within this complex. There are approximately another 400 more Nuwaubians within Putnam County (population 14,000)4. At this current complex the Nuwaubians have constructed an Egytian-style village with two pyramids, obelisks, and statues of Egyptian leaders. The two pyramids are distinct in appearance and in usage. There is a gold pyramid that serves as a trade center. Within this pyramid one can find a bookstore and a clothing store. The other pyramid is painted black with colorful Egyptian symbols painted on the outside. This structure serves as a church. Within the church, loudspeakers play Egyptian chants 24 hours a day, 7 days a week5.

    7. Sacred Texts: Holy Tabernacle Ministries. In addition, Dr. Malachi Z. York is said to the the author of over 460 books, called scrolls, but we have be unable to locate a bibliography of his writings. 6.

    8. Cult or Sect:

      The goals of the Religious Movements Homepage are to (1) provide resources for objective understanding, (2) encourage appreciation of religious diversity, and (3) promote religious tolerance. The opportunity to pursue these goals is diminished when the language employed in public discourse silently carries highly negative presuppositions.

      The concepts "cult" and "sect" have rather precise and technical meanings when used by social scientists who study religion, and they are employed free of normative or evaluative presuppositions. In popular discourse, the concepts usually imply highly negative connotations that cloud objective understanding while promoting prejudice (i.e. pre-judgment). The misunderstandings resulting from confusion of social science and popular meaning of these concepts has led us to the conclusion that the goals of this page are not well served by using the concepts "cult" and "sect" to identify specific groups profiled on these pages.

      We do discuss the meaning of these concepts elsewhere on this site. Indeed, a major segment of the Religious Movements Homepage is devoted to the examination of cult controversies. Topics include popular culture and technical uses of the concepts cult and sect, the explosive issue of brainwashing or mind control, and an in depth examination of anti-cult and counter cult movements. We encourage readers to explore these resources.

      Toward the end of promoting religious tolerance and appreciation of diversity, we encourage the use of concepts that are free of implicitly negative stereotyping. In place of "cult" and "sect," we recommend concepts like "new religious movements," "religious movements," or, simply "religious group."

    9. Size of Group: It is estimated between 100 Nuwaubians live within their compound. Another 400 reside elsewhere in Putnam County7.

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    II. Beliefs of the Group

      The Nuwaubians believe in living harmoniously with Mother Nature. They do not practice a specific religion, they practice a way of life called Nuwaubu and follow the teachings of their Master Teacher, Dr. Malachi York7. The Nuwaubian Nation of Moors originally started with traditional Islamic beliefs, however, over time Dr. Malachi Z. York has changed the beliefs of the group. The group is said to not have one religion. They are most interested in learning facts and truths of the way of the world. The Nuwaubians consider themselves a fraternal organization consisting of people from all races and faiths, including individuals with Christian, Muslim, Judaism, as well as all other religious affiliations7.

      There is a shared belief among most Nuwaubians in unidentified flying objects (UFOs), however this belief is not shared by all the members of the group. It is believed that Dr. Malachi York is an extraterrestrial being from the 19th galaxy, called Illyuwn. York arrived to the planet Earth on March 16, 1970. On this date, Bennett's Comet was visible. However, it is said that this was not actually a comet, it was York's spacecraft. York has prophesized that a spacecraft from the planet Illyuwn will visit Earth on May 5, 2003. The spacecraft will then take a chosen 144,000 Nuwaubians to the planet Rizq for rebirth8.

    | Profile | Beliefs | Controversies | Links | Bibliography |


    III. Controversies with the Nuwaubians

    Nuwaubian leader Dwight York has been in touble with the police in the past. In New York in the 1960s, York served three years in jail for resisting arrest, possession of a deadly weapon, and assualt9.

    Since they have moved to Georgia, the Nuwaubians have had several encounters with Putnam County authorities. Most of the encounters involve various zoning violations. The Nuwaubians have attempted to build on their own land and operate as a sovereign state. In 1997 they began to issue their own passports, license plates, and currency8.

    As of February 3, 2000, a hand-painted For Sale sign has appeared in front of the Nuwaubian compound. No details have been released by the Nuwaubians or their leader, Dr. York. The property was originally bought in 1993 for $975,000. It consists of 476 acres, including a 3000 square foot home (decorated in Itallian marble), a pool and tennis courts, a guest house, and also the Nuwaubian village10. The Nuwaubians have not yet disclosed how much they are asking for their property.

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IV. Links to Nuwaubian Nation of Moors Web Sites

    The United Nuwaubian Nation of Moors
    This unofficial website of the group provides valuable information regarding the groups history, their leader and founder and their way of life. In addition it presents information on Dr. York which has not been found elsewhere. It is written and maintained by students of Dr. York.
    http://www.geocities.com/area51/corridor/4978/unnm.html

    The Ancient Ones
    This is an unofficial website of the Nuwaubians. It contains informantion regarding the Holy Tabernacle Ministries. In addition this page contains links to other valuable sources of information. The page also offers insight into the Nuwaubians views on extraterrestrials.
    http://users.netropolis.net/moorish/default.htm

    United Nuwaubian Nation of Moors
    This page highlights some of the beliefs and goals of the Nuwaubians. It also provides an insight into identifying who the Moors are and the ancestoral roots of the Nuwaubians.
    http://www.worldafricannet.com/blackhistory/blackhistory3564.html

    Nuwaubian Commune Awaits Spaceship
    This site contains an article that has been found throughout the web, written by Patricia Mays, of the Associated Press. It addresses the Nuwaubian commune in Eatonton, Georgia and the group's reason for relocating from Brooklyn, NY.
    http://www.ufomind.com/ufo/updates/1998/aug/m17-005.shtml

    Resource Center for Freedom of Mind
    This page contains information on the various names that the Nuwaubians have used. It also provides a list aliases used by the founder and links to articles related to this group.
    http://www.freedomofmind.com/groups/nuwaubian/nuwaubian.htm

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V. Bibliography

    Associated Press. 2000.
    "Nuwaubian Nation puts its land up for sale." The Associated Press State and Local Wire 3 February: State and Regional.

    Branson, Louise. 1999.
    "Fears of Waco II after cult sets up compound." The Straits Times(Singapore) 16 September: 11.

    Copeland, Larry. 1999.
    "Race, religion, rhetoric simmer in Georgia town." The Salt Lake Tribune 18 September.

    Glanton, Dahleen. 1999.
    "Georgia group's cultlike ways reason enough to fear, local authorities say." Chicago Tribune 1 August: P7B.

    Mays, Patricia. 1999.
    "Georgia Cult's Pyramids, Space Prophecy Alarms Neighbors." Chattanooga Times 1 August: A5.

    Monroe, Sylvester. 1999.
    "Strangers from the North send a Southern town into a tizzy." Time 12 July: 1.

    Osinski, Bill. 1999.
    "Nuwaubians get their day in court; Putnam County group makes peace." The Atlanta Journal and Constitution 30 June: 4B.

    Osinski, Bill & Kathy Pruitt. 1999.
    "Rangers jump in Nuwaubian zoning dispute in Putnam." The Atlanta Journal and Constitution 25 June: 11D.

    Osinski, Bill. 1999.
    "Hearing is delayed for leader of Moors." The Atlanta Journal and Constitution 23 June: 6F.

    Osinski, Bill. 1999.
    "Judge wants explanation of why Moors won't obey his orders to cooperate with county officials." The Atlanta Journal and Constitution 22 June: 10C.

    Osinski, Bill. 1998.
    "Racial, legal issues cloud Egypt." The Atlanta Journal and Constitution 20 September: 01C.

    Peecher, Rob. 2000.
    "Nuwaubian land sale sparks little controversy." Macon Telegraph 4 February.

    | Profile | Beliefs | Controversies | Links | Bibliography


VI. References

  1. Resource Center for Freedom of Mind: http://www.freedomofmind.com/groups/nuwaubian/nuwaubian.htm
  2. Monroe, Sylvester. "Strangers from the North send a Southern town into a tizzy." Time, July 12 1999: 1.
  3. The Our Story of the Holy Tabernacle Ministries: http://www.geocities.com/area51/corridor/4978/ourstory.html
  4. Osinski, Bill. "Racial, legal issues cloud Egypt." The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, September 20, 1998: 01C.
  5. Mays, Patricia. "Georgia Cult's Pyramids, Space Prophecy Alarms Neighbors." Chattanooga Times, August 1, 1999: A5.
  6. The Master Teacher Dr. Malachi Z. York: http://www.gepcities.com/area51/corridor/4978/york.html
  7. Copeland, Larry. "Race, religion, rhetoric simmer in Georgia town." The Salt Lake Tribune, September 18, 1999.
  8. Glanton, Dahleen. "Georgia group's cultlike ways reason enough to fear, local authorities say." <>, August 1, 1999: P7B.
  9. Branson, Louise. "Fears of Waco II after cult sets up compound." The Strait Times (Singapore), September 16, 1999: 11.
  10. Associated Press. "Nuwaubian Nation puts its land up for sale." The Associated Press State and Local Wire, February 3, 2000: State and Regional.


VII. Contacting the Nuwaubians

For more information on the United Nuwaubian Nation of Moors try contacting them. Write to: The United Nuwaubian Nation of Moors P.O. Box 4490 Eatonton, GA 31024 or call: (706)485-2036

Created by Robert Rafalski
For Sociology 257: New Religious Movements
Spring Term, 2000
University of Virginia
Last updated: 10/07/00