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Life Magazine Cover
Caption: This cover from Life magazine features A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin, the lead organizers for the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.
The 1963 March for Jobs and Freedom was an amazing organizing success. More than 200,000 people participated. Over the next few years, in response to the march and civil rights activism throughout the country, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act (1964), the Voting Rights Act (1965), and the Fair Housing Act (1968). Not all of the demands of the march were met and the legislation did not always meet the imaginations of activists and organizers. However, the organizing tradition that A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin, among others, had cultivated through labor movements reached a new prominence in the 1950s and 1960s which opened the door for greater possibilities.
Indeed, as the NAACP and other organizations began to organize a boycott of New York City’s schools in 1964, they enlisted Bayard Rustin as the lead organizer for what proved to be an even larger demonstration than the March on Washington.
How to cite: “Life Magazine Cover,” in New York City Civil Rights History Project, Accessed: [Month Day, Year], https://nyccivilrightshistory.org/topics/boycotting-ny-schools/organizing-direct-action/life-magazine-cover.
- Why do you think Life magazine featured A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin on the cover, rather than speakers like Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and John Lewis?
- What do you notice about the picture? What do you wonder?