1922 June 14

Thousands March Silently to Protest Lynching


Considered to be perhaps the first peaceful march for civil rights in Washington, D.C., 5,000 African-Americans quietly marched past the White House and the U.S. Senate building to denounce lynching and to demand a federal anti-lynching law.

On July 28, 1917, the NAACP had organized a silent march of 10,000 people down Fifth Avenue in New York City to protest racist violence. The 1917 march was in response to the East St. Louis race riot that began on July 2, 1917. Congress never passed a law outlawing lynching, however, due to opposition from Southern state legislators.

Congress on June 13, 2005 apologized for never passing an anti-lynching law.

On April 20, 1939, the great jazz singer Billie Holiday recorded the famous anti-lynching song, “Strange Fruit.”

Learn more about the NAACP anti-lynching campaign: http://www.naacp.org/pages/naacp-history-anti-lynching-bill

And more about the Dyer anti-lynching bill: http://www.blackpast.org/aah/dyer-anti-lynching-bill-1922

Read the 2015 report on the number of lynchings: Equal  Justice Initiative, Lynching in America: Confronting the Legacy of Racial Terror (2015)

Learn more about the march: http://washingtonspark.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/before-1963-the-1922-silent-march-on-washington/

Read: Robert Zangrando, The NAACP’s Anti-Lynching Crusade Against Lynching, 1909 to 1950 (1980)

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