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Marching on WashingtonThe Forging of an American Political Tradition$
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Lucy Barber

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780520242159

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520242159.001.0001

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“In the Great Tradition”

“In the Great Tradition”

The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, August 28,1963

(p.141) CHAPTER FIVE “In the Great Tradition”
Marching on Washington

Lucy G. Barber

University of California Press

More than 200,000 protesters descended on the nation's capital for the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom on August 28, 1963. Not long after, Tom Kahn, an organizer for the protest, tried to assess the day's significance. As Khan stressed, the marchers had come to Washington as the result of hard-won agreement among leaders of civil rights, religious, and labor groups to sponsor a massive, peaceful demonstration in Washington. They had heard of the march because of its effective and unprecedented mass marketing, and also had the unprecedented blessing of President John F. Kennedy. The participants marched to the Lincoln Memorial, where they listened to speeches from the protest's leaders. Kahn was unsure in his assessment whether the march would achieve its stated goals: a strong civil rights bill and measures to reduce unemployment.

Keywords:   protesters, Jobs and Freedom, Tom Kahn, Lincoln Memorial, unemployment

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