COLONIAL HEIGHTS, VA., APRIL 4 -- More than 600 people, most of them black, marched through this nearly all-white city today, demanding jobs and equal housing opportunities.

Although there was no violence and no arrests, the marchers were taunted and jeered by a crowd of approximately the same size. Many of those on the sidelines waved Confederate flags.

The march was organized by the Virginia chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. Today is the 19th anniversary of the assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., the SCLC's founder.

At the end of the two-mile route, the Rev. Curtis W. Harris Jr., state president of the SCLC, taped a list of the protesters' demands to the courthouse door as the marchers cheered.

Mayor James McNeer, who monitored the parade from City Hall with the city manager, said he was "very pleased that there were no incidents. That was our primary goal."

McNeer said he had not seen the demands that Harris posted but that the City Council will "look at them" at its next meeting, April 14.

With fewer than 50 blacks among the city's 16,000 residents, Colonial Heights is the "whitest" city or county in Virginia.

None of the demands presented today accused the city of barring blacks from living here. However, Harris noted that the city's stores and businesses prosper with the help of the many blacks who live nearby, including the students and faculty of predominantly black Virginia State University, which is at the edge of the city.

"If we can't have 15 percent {of the contracts and jobs} set aside" at a regional mall under construction here, "you can forget about our dollars," Harris said.

He said the march marked "the end of our willingness to suffer racism" in Colonial Heights and in other communities across the country where blacks are not welcome.

"We're fed up, and we're not going to take it no more. The doors of freedom must be opened," he said. Housing "must be available to all who can afford it," he said, and jobs and business opportunities should be open to all.

Among the proposals taped to the courthouse door were suggestions that the city's public schools utilize student teachers from VSU rather than from predominantly white colleges farther away, that magnet schools be created in the same region that the shopping center will serve, and that a biracial committee be appointed to "improve the image" of Colonial Heights.

Harris charged that there was gerrymandering when Colonial Heights was chartered as a city after World War II, and he vowed to "straighten the lines out" with housing and job opportunities.

He suggested that blacks have been steered away from the city to nearby Petersburg, which is predominantly black.

"We will not wait until the new census or the new century. We want change now," he said.

Several of the marchers said that they had participated in an SCLC march through all-white Forsyth County, Ga., earlier this year.

It was that protest that Harris said inspired today's march.

Paul Collins, 31, a carpenter, and a David Levine, 43, a cabdriver, were among those who made the 125-mile trip from Washington today. They carried a peace sign that they said they also used in Forsyth County.

Although no city officials other than police officers were on hand today, officials of the school system, which counts only half a dozen blacks among its 2,800 students, provided several school buses so that the marchers could return to the VSU campus, where the march began.

Even that little cooperation prompted some whites in the crowd to complain about the cost of the march to the city's taxpayers.

"There's no reason for this. Nobody is telling them they can't live here," said Frances Vaden, a homemaker who said she and her family, which includes 10 grandchildren, have lived in the city for years.

Vaden was sitting on the fender of her car beside a sign that read "We and our children are safe. We don't need murders, rapes, stabbings and robberies. Check our crime rate."

Another Colonial Heights resident, Robert Fuller, 32, a lab technician who was wearing a cape made from a Confederate flag, said he was there "for white supremacy." He said he did not want blacks to "tear up Colonial Heights the way they have done with Petersburg."

However, Fuller said that "everyone should be allowed to live where they want to. I was discriminated against when I went to get an apartment last year because I drive a motorcycle."

As the marchers passed a Safeway parking lot, which was jammed with pickup trucks and vans bearing Confederate flags, Ron Doggett, who is organizing a countermarch here next Saturday, said, "The only thing {the marchers} did today was arouse the white people. It's going to help us a great deal." Doggett, a 25-year-old landscaper from suburban Richmond, predicted that as many as 300 people will turn out for next week's march, sponsored by the Southern National Front, which Doggett described as a white separatist organization.

As the marchers passed, singing and chanting familiar civil rights songs and slogans, Doggett and his companions threw out their arms in a Nazi-like salute and yelled, "Niggers go home."

McNeer said that most of the people who lined today's route were "outsiders." As for next Saturday's counterdemonstration, he said: "I certainly don't approve of the views" of the white supremacists who plan to march, "and I don't think most of our residents do either."

Harris also called today for an end to what he said was racial discrimination at nearby Fort Lee.

"The freedom that they preach must be afforded to the black military man who comes to Fort Lee," he said of the military installation, where half of the 18,000 soldiers, dependents and employes are black.

Local SCLC members are conducting an inquiry into allegations of housing discrimination against blacks at at the fort.

Nathaniel Flemming, a retired military officer, came to Fort Lee in 1969 when he returned from Vietnam. He said a real estate agent told him he could not move to Colonial Heights. "Nothing has happened since then, and that's why I'm here," he said today as he lined up with the marchers.

Tami Champ, a VSU sophomore who wore a sign that read "Freedom from Intimidation," said she does not have to worry about housing but does feel unwelcome when she visits or shops in Colonial Heights. She mentioned a pizza parlor that students often go to where the waiters and waitresses "talk to you like you are the lowest of the low."