4. William Fox Audubon Theater (Site of Malcolm X Assassination)
The 2,368 seat William Fox Audubon Theater, which is located between 166th and 165th streets, was one of the first theaters in the area to feature talkies. But the theater is most infamous because Malcolm X was assassinated there on February 21, 1965. At the time, Malcolm X’s Organization of Afro-American Unity was holding weekly meetings in the Audubon Ballroom and he was killed during a speech.
Afte, the Ballroom closed and taken over by the City for non-payment of taxes. It was then purchased by Columbia University, which began demolishing the structure in 1992. Before demolition was complete, the University relented to public pressure and reached a compromise with local community groups. Columbia left most of the original Thomas Lamb facade (and even restored it) and provided space for the Malcolm X and Dr. Betty Shabazz Memorial and Educational Center within the building.