At the Lincoln Memorial in 1963

The Rev. <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PEHST001228" title="Martin Luther King Jr." href="/topic/arts-culture/culture/martin-luther-king-jr.-PEHST001228.topic">Martin Luther King Jr.</a> with marchers at the Lincoln Memorial in 1963. The March on Washington was a watershed moment in history. But, as <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="ORNPR0000040" title="NPR" href="/topic/business/media-industry/radio-industry/npr-ORNPR0000040.topic">NPR</a> <a href="http://www.npr.org/news/specials/march40th/part1.html"></a>notes, "the outward appearance of unity masked divisions over the march by top civil rights groups. Young black militants predicted it would be nothing but a picnic at the Lincoln Memorial; older black leaders thought it might end in violence. On the night before the march, the speaker system was sabotaged. Meanwhile, the Kennedy <a class="taxInlineTagLink" id="PLCUL000110" title="White House" href="/topic/politics-government/government/white-house-PLCUL000110.topic">White House</a> and the Congress opposed it too, fearing riots."

( AFP / Getty Images )

The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. with marchers at the Lincoln Memorial in 1963. The March on Washington was a watershed moment in history. But, as NPR notes, "the outward appearance of unity masked divisions over the march by top civil rights groups. Young black militants predicted it would be nothing but a picnic at the Lincoln Memorial; older black leaders thought it might end in violence. On the night before the march, the speaker system was sabotaged. Meanwhile, the Kennedy White House and the Congress opposed it too, fearing riots."

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