Only one thing was missing from The Post's coverage of the Aug. 28, 1963, March on Washington in which Martin Luther King Jr. gave the greatest civil rights speech of the 20th century: Martin Luther King Jr.
The story duly noted the huge turnout, the orderly crowds and solemn and eloquent statement this event made for justice and equality. But not a word of King's "I Have a Dream" speech was included. The great civil rights leader was merely listed as a speaker near the end of the story. An excerpt from The Post of Aug. 29, 1963:
By Robert E. Baker
More than 200,000 persons jammed the Mall here yesterday in the biggest civil rights demonstration in the Nation's history.
This was the "March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom," a one-day rally demanding a breakthrough in civil rights for Negroes.
The demonstrators came by special buses and trains in perfect order. They sang and gathered at the Lincoln Memorial to hear their leaders call on Congress to pass civil rights legislation.
In a mammoth display of fervor, they ended the day by pledging to return to their homes and keep up the battle for full equality by more demonstrations, if necessary.
A. Philip Randolph, director of the March and head of the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters, drew great applause in his remarks at the Memorial when he said this was only the beginning of demonstrations here to gain equality for all.
The ten leaders, representing top Negro civil rights organizations, organized labor and religious denominations, visited Capitol Hill in the morning.
Top House and Senate leaders congratulated the marchers on the courteous behavior but were chary about saying that the demonstration would help the passage of pending civil rights legislation. House Speaker John W. Cormack (D-Mass.) did go so far as to say that the impact of the orderly demonstration would help the bill.
After the demonstration, the leaders called on President Kennedy and Vice President Lyndon B. Johnson at the White House.
After the White House meeting, President Kennedy issued a statement in which he said that such demonstrations for equality are not new nor difficult to understand.
"What is different today is the intensified and widespread public awareness of the need to move forward in achieving these objectives -- objectives which are older than the Nation," the statement said. It concluded:
"The cause of 20 million Negroes has been advanced by the program conducted so appropriately before the Nation's shrine to the Great Emancipator, but even more significant is the contribution to all mankind."
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