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Fears, Food, and the 1963 March on Washington

Rabbis arriving at Union Station for the first march on Washington in 1943. The march was called off then. Learn what historians have to say about the first planned march on Washington. (Google LIFE photo archive) 
In the days before the 1963 March on Washington, U. S. media outlets warned that when protesters disembarked in the capital, riots and violence would overtake the city. For the first time since prohibition authorities in the nation capital banned liquor sales in August of 1963 fearing hordes of drunk and disorderly black men attending the march would wander the streets of Washington DC committing violent crimes.  These fears lead business owners, including restaurant owners, to schedule to be closed the day of the march.  In response organizers of the march encouraged people planning on attending the March to bring water and food. Organizers also contracted to have food concession stands along the event route run by Government Services, Inc., (GSI) a private organization that ran all government cafeterias, to sell “hot dogs, soft drinks and other picnic foods” on the day of the march.  

Historians Remember the March on Washington: [Listen Now 52 min 52 sec] http://backstoryradio.org/shows/fierce-urgency-of-now/?autoplay=true

Oral Histories About the March: [Watch Now] http://video.pbs.org/program/memories-march/shorts/

March on Washington Series: http://www.foodasalens.com/search?q=March+on+washington

Oral Histories, Food, and the 1963 March on Washington

The August 1963 March on Washington Through the Lens of Food, Part 2