At approximately 5:30 PM on Friday, August 17, 1962, the Honorable Carlos A. Cooks officiated over the ground breaking ceremony of the Marcus Garvey Memorial Building located on the south side of 141st Street, approximately one hundred feet east of Eighth Avenue, Harlem. It marked the beginning of both another spectacular Garvey Day celebration and the construction of the Marcus Garvey Memorial Building. Mr. Cooks outlined two main purposes for the erection of the building. First, it would be a stone monument that would spiritually testify to the admiration and respect that the Black people of Harlem have for the life, efforts, deeds, doctrine and memory of Hon. Marcus Mosiah Garvey. Second, it would serve as a permanent headquarters for the African Nationalist Pioneer Movement (ANPM)
Although Hon. Carlos A. Cooks was born June 23, 1913, in San Pedro de Macoris in the Dominican Republic, his recognition was forged in Harlem, where he was an unwavering advocate of the philosophy and opinions of Marcus Garvey. The first Dominican Republic UNIA Chapter (26) in 1919 (San Pedro de Macoris) was established at one of his father’s many buildings. Mr. Cooks would become the youngest captain in the UNIA African Legion. A year after Garvey’s death in London in 1940, Cooks, on his birthday, founded the ANPM, with the expressed purpose of keeping Garvey’s legacy of African Redemption and reclamation alive.
It was Carlos Cooks who single handedly continued the work of Marcus Garvey after Garvey’s transition.
It was Carlos Cooks who coined the phrase “Buy Black,” many years before it was popularized by others.
It was Carlos Cooks who kept Garvey’s UNIA Red, Black and Green tricolors displayed daily and nightly.
It was Carlos Cooks who established the Marcus Garvey memorial parade on August 17, 1941 in Harlem.
It was Carlos Cooks who recruited Black men to enlist in defending Ethiopia after its invasion by Italy.
It was Carlos Cooks who in 1959 convened a conference to eliminate the term, “Negro” and replace it.
It was Carlos Cooks who continued the Miss Natural Standard of Beauty to promote Black woman beauty
and natural hairstyle.
It was Carlos Cooks who created the African Pioneer Syndicate as a replica of the African Communities League.
It was Carlos Cooks who founded the STREET SPEAKER with the same focus as the UNIA’s Negro World.
It was Carlos Cooks who created jobs and employment for Black people in Harlem, similar to Marcus Garvey.
Mr. Garvey wrote, “All I have I have given to you. You.” As a result, Hon. Carlos A. Cooks sought only to promote the life and works of the Hon. Marcus Garvey.
“Instead of being consumers we should be owners,” Cooks charged. “We’re always crying about employment, yet we don’t create businesses where we could employ our own children, neighbors and friends, and empower the Black community just as other people empower their own.”
As per Elombe Brath, “He was the embodiment of commitment without egotism, and courage that would not falter or crumble even under the constant bombardment by the media’s propaganda meant to destroy the minds of a rich and noble race.”
Hence, Hon. Carlos Cooks is the ideological son of Hon. Marcus Garvey.