The event of the March on Washington was a spectacular event. Thousands of people gathered together for the cause of Civil Rights. For this blog I hope to show you a few sources that highlight this amazing event.
First is a picture of a group of Civil Rights leaders posing with Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson and Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy. The reason that this meeting was held is due to the fact that many people in Washington feared that the March to the capital would turn into a violent protest. The Civil Rights leaders who were planning this deiced upon the meeting as to ensure that their chances at equality would not be overlooked due to this. Robert F. Kennedy opposed the idea of a March due to the potential for violence and that it might ruin the Civil Rights Bill they had been working on.
The second source that I found was a video containing a speech that President John F. Kennedy gave about his stance on the March prior to it taking place. He Said,
“So that I think that what we are talking about is an issue that concerns all of our people and must in the final analysis be settled by the Congress and by the executive branch, working with 180 million people. This is an effort, however, to bring focus to the strong concern of a good many citizens. So that I think, as I said before, it is in that tradition that I meet with the leadership and in which I think it is appropriate that these people and anyone else who feels themselves who are concerned- should come to Washington, see their Congressmen, and see any of us if they feel that it is in the public interest.”
President Kennedy, in his address to the press, states that he agrees with the action of March on the capital. This shows how dedicated to the peoples’ interests he was, because he invites people that have an issue with something to come to Congress, as is their right, and try to work it out. Kennedy made no mention of trying to stop this from happening and openly stated that he didn’t know exactly what they outcome would be.
To listen to Kennedy address the press on this matter go to the link below and click the video 180 million people
The next couple of sources are pictures of the event taking place. On August 28th, 1963 200,000 people showed up for this event, spilling and crowding an area the size of five city blocks. People of all different color and background gathered together to sing and listen to Martin Luther King Jr. speak. The people were united were together under one cause and above all it was peaceful. All 200,000 people in harmony with one another. This shows exactly what the Civil Rights leaders were fighting for. Peace, love, equality. The very thing that they represented that day in Washington D.C.
By looking through these sources it’s easy to see that the March on Washington was a huge success. It built up a positive reputation for the Civil Rights Movement and also the African American community. 200,000 people gathered in our Nation’s Capital to stand up for what they believed was right. These sources provide a visual to our nation’s history that a book simply cannot provide. They bring history to life through speeches, transcripts, and pictures. In the letter from the white house shown below, they state that the efforts shown by the thousands of Americans that day did a great deal and that the executive branch will continue its efforts to eliminate discrimination. The March was one of the greatest moments and triumphs in American history. To this day, children in schools will be taught about Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech. This event provides us with the hope that since people who are vastly different from one another can gather together and be united under one cause. The story that these sources tell is one of victory and fearlessness. These people gathered, marched, and spoke out about what they wanted and today Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream is realized. The story of The March on Washington is a great one that will be told for years and years to come.