“Plans had called for the Big Ten to lead the March but the Marchers–thousands and thousands of them–surged ahead on their own before the Big Ten arrived, which John Lewis saw as symbolic of the civil rights movement:
“‘A spot was cleared so the photographers could shoot pictures and some of those photos ran in newspaper the next day as if we were in front of the March. But we could not even see the front. We came to the Lincoln Memorial, the leaders being pushed along by the people–as it should be.'”
John Lewis at the Lincoln Memorial, August 28, 1963.
“To those who have said, ‘Be patient and wait,’ we must say that we cannot be patient. We do not want our freedom gradually but we want to be free now.We are tired. We are tired of being beat by policemen. We are tired of seeing our people locked up in jail over and over again, and then you holler, ‘Be patient.’ How long can we be patient? We want our freedom and we want it now.”
Kitty Kelley with John Lewis at the National Archives,
June 6, 2013.
See also Kitty Kelley’s “The March to the Dream” at Huffington Post.
See also Chicago Tribune slideshow of images of
the March on Washington here.
Clinton Presidential Library has posted some photos here in connection with an exhibition of Stanley Tretick’s images of the March on Washington.