The March on Washington

Mitchell Walz

How It Started

In the times before the early 1960's, racial discrimination was a massive conflict. Martin Luther King organized a massive march in Washington D.C. meant to bring attention to unemployment among black workers and to urge Congress to pass President John F. Kennedy’s civil rights bill. This march took place August 28, 1963.

The Protest

At the march, Martin Luther King presented his famous "I had a dream" speech. In this speech, King asked for all people to be treated equal. King believed that these problems can be solved by talking, not fighting or being violent. About 250,000 people from all over the country gathered on the National Mall in Washington D.C. to hear this speech. This was the largest demonstration of protest in U.S. history.

Effects of the Protest

The March on Washington was a turning point of the civil rights movement, presenting that nonviolent, peaceful protest can send a strong message. After the protest, President Kennedy made protective laws to secure the civil rights of all U.S. citizens. Then, President Kennedy was assassinated in November 1963. Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson then became president to take his place. Johnson had congress pass Kennedy's laws in the Civil Rights Act of 1964.