Documents:
Los Angeles CA Protests
1963-1964

Skip introduction

[As explained in About the Civil Rights Movement Archive, this website was created to document and preserve the history of the Southern Freedom Movement — meaning the Civil Rights Movement as it occurred in the South. We chose not to cover the northern wing of the Movement because few of us in Bay Area Veterans of the Civil Rights Movement had much direct experience in the North and because, with one exception, we did not have any significant collection of northern materials to begin with. That one exception was the documents I had preserved from the Los Angeles protests of 1963-1964 in which I was an active participant. We had hoped that activists from the northern wing of the Movement would create a sister-site (or sites) to ours, but that is just now beginning to materialize (see Northern Wing of the Civil Rights Movement). So in order to preserve this history and make it available online as an example of what was simultaneously occurring in the North while we were struggling in the South, I'm making an exception to our southern focus by posting these documents from L.A. (See the first two chapters of "Troublemaker" Memories of the Freedom Movement for my personal narrative of the history that these documents chronicle.)]

 — Bruce Hartford, Webspinner

Founded in 1909, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) was the oldest civil rights organization in America. Most of its northern chapters were predominantly Black but with a significant number of white members and leaders (many of whom were Jews). The first Los Angeles NAACP was formed in 1914. It was one of the oldest in the western United States. Like most NAACP chapters in the North in the 1960s, it was primarily composed of Black and white professionals (clergy, doctors, teachers, business owners, etc) and its main activities were legal defense, anti-discrimination lawsuits, and legislative lobbying. In line with the national NAACP's views, as a general rule it did not favor direct action protests such as sit-ins, though it did on occassion support moderate, issue-oriented mass marches.

The Western Christian Leadership Conference (WCLC) was formed in the mid-1950s to support the Montgomery Bus Boycott. It was composed almost entirely of African-American and a few white clergymen and its primary focus was raising funds for Dr. King's Southern Christian Leadership Conference.

The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) was formed by pacificsts and labor activists in Chicago in the early 1940s to be a direct action organization (in contrast to the NAACP's lawsuits & lobbying strategy). As a general rule, the membership of most northern CORE chapters was usually more or less equally comprised of Afro-Americans and whites (though the membership of college CORE chapters usually reflected the racial makeup of the institution which mean that most campus CORE groups were largely white).

The first Los Angeles Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) chapter was formed in the early 1940s. But it was unable overcome factionalism or sustain itself against "Red Scare" assaults on liberal and integrationist groups. A new LA CORE chapter was resurrected in the 1950s. It took on segregation in public accommodations, employment discrimination, and restricted housing. The 1960 student sit-ins in the South, followed by the Freedom Rides in 1961 increased public awarness of nonviolent protests and publicized CORE. This resulted in a wave of new CORE members who were younger and less likely to be middle-class professionals with established careers.

In the early '60s, LA CORE took action against employment discrimination and segregated housing while simultaneously supporting the southern struggle by picketing Woolworths, recruiting Freedom Riders, and sending relief supplies to the Fayette County TN tent city. The national attention to civil rights sparked by Dr. King's Birmingham Campaign in the Spring of 1963 swelled LA CORE's active members to well over 75, and spurred the formation of satellite chapters in dispersed communities such as Venice, Long Beach, Pacoima, and Pasadena, along with campus chapters at colleges such as UCLA and LA State College. By mid-1963, these multiple chapters were energized by campaigns against segregated housing, defacto school segregation, employment discrimination, and police malpractice & brutality.

But by the end of 1963, while the central LA CORE chapter's active membership was approaching 150 it had become divided into two rival factions who disagreed on how hard to push nonviolent direct action protests. At the end of that year, the more militant faction left LA CORE to form the Non-Violent Action Committee (N-VAC). Throughout 1964, the large and active UCLA "Bruin" CORE chapter generally aligned itself with N-VAC while LA CORE and most of the satellite chapters remained allied with the NAACP, WCLC, and ACLU in the United Civil Rights Committee (UCRC) which N-VAC and Bruin CORE were not invited to join. While pursuing different strategies and tactics, the two alliances "agreed to disagree" and often cooperated with each other on campaigns and joined each other's protests.

[A note on language: In the 1960s, social-justice activists commonly used the word "ghetto" for Afro-American neighborhoods — particularly in the urban north — as a way of calling attention to involuntary residential segregation, economic exploitation, systemic poverty, and police repression. In some contexts, ghetto was also a term of defiant community pride. Today, some folks now use "ghetto" as a disparaging pejorative, as in "that's so ghetto." On this site we use "ghetto" as it was used in the 1960s.]

Documents Listed Chronologically
Los Angeles CA Protests 1963-1964
Pre-63   1963   1964   1965  

See also L.A. Documents Grouped by Type or Subject

Before 1963
????LAUSDDilworth Act Relating to Communist-Party Membership, school board's legal basis for "Loyalty Oath."
3/62?  LAUSD Board rule requiring Loyalty Oath, J.P. Crowther, L.A. Unified School District. Possibly March 1962

1963
1963COREWelcome to CORE, flyer for new members. Undated 1963
1963CORESouthwest Realty Board Supports Segregation, CORE flyer ("southwest" refers to an area of L.A. county). Undated 1963
1963?NYCWhat You Should Know to Get Rid of Rats, New York City Dept. of Health. Undated.
1963CORESegregated Schools in Los Angeles, 32-page pamphlet. Kenneth Fry, CORE Education Committee. Undated
5/9/63COREChief Parker resign! Mother's Day party flyer
6/28/63COREPress release about real estate tycoon Don Wilson, LA CORE.
7/21/63Join Our Demonstration Against Police Malpractice, Ad Hoc Committee Against Police Malpractice, Venice CA.
Fall 63UCRCAct Now! Flyer against school segregation. Unsigned UCRC. Undated
Fall 63UCRCFlyer against school segregation. Unsigned UCRC. Undated
7/63CORELA CORE organizing calendar.
7/10/63COREPress release protesting Torrance town curfew to block protests, LA CORE.
8/63CORELA CORE organizing calendar
8/63HEPNeighborhood Commons Project, unsigned Harlem Education Project.
9/63CORESo You Are Willing to Be Arrested, LA CORE arrestee form. Undated (probably September '63)
9/19/63COREYes, There IS School Segregation Here flyer. LA CORE.
Fall 63COREDuties of Monitors, protest instructions. Unsigned LA CORE. Undated.
Fall 63CORENote to Bruin CORE re White-Only job notice at sorority, anonymous. Undated
Fall 63COREBruin CORE recruitment flyer. Undated
Fall 63?COREAnti-Bruin CORE flyer attacking Bruin CORE. Undated.
Fall 63COREBoard of Education Sing-In songsheet, unsigned LACORE.
10/63CORESupport for CORE Action Projects, Woodrow Coleman L.A. CORE Action Committee.
10/14/63COREAction Committee Memo & Agenda, Woodrow Coleman L.A. CORE.
10/24/63COREFlyer for Fourth Study-In, unsigned CORE.
11/2/63COREReport on All Night Sit-in at Board of Education, Bruce Hartford, N-VAC/Bruin CORE.
11/11/63COREDaily Bruin article on BoE sit-in
11/14/63CORERevised L.A. CORE Constitution, adopted November 14, 1963
11/18/63COREPress release supporting Hopi tribe, Unsigned L.A. CORE.
11/30/63COREL.A. CORE Active Membership Bulletin
12/63COREDon't Support Job Discrimination, unsigned CORE (later N-VAC) against Wichstand drive-in.
12/63CORELetter demoting 17 members of L.A. CORE (the result of a "more-protests" vs "fewer-protests" internal split)
12/16/63COREL.A. CORE Active Membership Bulletin

1964
1964COREActive member questionaire, L.A. CORE. Undated (possibly late 1963 or early 1964)
1964COREFor Whom the (School) Bell Tolls, school segregation flyer. Pasadena CORE. Undated (possibly 1964)
1964?N-VACHome Savings Finances Discrimination, unsigned N-VAC flyer. Undated.
1964COREFundraising Brochure, L.A. CORE,
1964?CADoJIncident information form, California Department of Justice. Undated.
1964N-VACArrest consent & instructions form, Unsigned, N-VAC. Undated 1964
1964N-VACNon-Violent Action Committee stationary
1964N-VACN-VAC Membership Application, Non-Violent Action Committee. Undated
1964?N-VAC Letter from Lincoln Heights Jail, Woodrow Coleman (handwritten). (Undated, probably 1964)
1964N-VAC Nonviolent training session notes #1, (handwritten), undated 1964
1964N-VAC Nonviolent training session notes #2, Undated
1964N-VAC Nonviolent training session notes #3, Undated
1964N-VAC Nonviolent training session notes #4 (annotated during session). Undated
1964N-VAC Nonviolent training session script (handwritten). Undated
1964COREFundraising questionaire for L.A. CORE members, undated 1964
1964N-VAC Note (handwritten) from Lincoln Heights jail, Woodrow (Woody) Coleman. Undated 1964
1/30/64CORESafeway negotiations with CORE, E.A. Saunders, Safeway, press-release by L.A. CORE.
2/1/64CORESafeway Gives in to CORE's Demands, membership bulletin. L.A. CORE.
2/64N-VACRevised Employment Statistics of Van de Kamp's, Bruce Hartford, N-VAC. Undated (probably early February 1964)
2/64N-VACN-VAC employment demands presented to Van de Kamp's, unsigned. Undated (probably mid-February 1964)
2/64COREL.A. CORE Organizing Calendar
2/1/64COREL.A. CORE Membership Bulletin
2/19/64N-VACBoycott of Van de Kamp's Called for Thursday, unsigned N-VAC press release (probably by Mari Goldman). February 19, 1964
2/19/64COREL.A. CORE Membership Bulletin
2/21/64UCRCMemo to members re protests against discrimination by Ralph's sumermarkets, Earl Walter, UCRC.
2/21/64N-VACDon't Buy Van De Kamp's, first boycott flyer, unsigned. Undated (probably February 21st 1964)
2/21/64COREAnti-Segregation Amendment Action Timetable, Bruin CORE flyer. February 21, 1964
2/21/64COREAnti-Segregation Action! Unsigned Bruin CORE flyer
Spg 64COREBruin CORE flyer picket line violence & Republican convention. Undated (probably spring 1964)
3/64COREL.A. CORE Organizing Calendar
3/64COREL.A. CORE-Lator, newsletter. Vol 1, Num 1
3/64N-VACFact Sheet on Van De Kamp's Action, unsigned. Undated (probably March '64)
3/6/64COREL.A. CORE Membership Bulletin
3/11/64COREDear Friend of Freedom, L.A. CORE recruitment letter, Arthur Silver, Chair, L.A. CORE. March 11, 1964
3/14/64N-VAC Come Join Us, Van de Kamp's sit-in flyer. Unsigned.
3/17/64UCRCDear Friend mailing re agreement with Ralph's Stores, Earl Walter, UCRC.
3/21/64N-VAC Van de Kamp's Discriminates Against Negroes This Must be Changed Now, sit-in flyer. Unsigned.
3/24/64COREL.A. CORE Membership Bulletin
3/26/64COREInitiative No!, flyer opposing state constitutional initiative to prohibit civil rights laws such as the Rumford Fair Housing Act. Unsigned L.A. CORE.
3/28/64COREReserve: March 28, flyer promoting civil rights march. Unsigned Bruin CORE
4/64COREL.A. CORE Organizing Calendar
4/4/64COREWhy We Are Demonstrating! unsigned L.A. CORE flyer re employment discrimination by radio station KFWB.
4/4/64COREFreedom Now? Recruitment flyer for protests against job discrimination. Unsigned L.A. CORE
4/64N-VAC N-VAC picket line song sheets, undated (probably April, May, or June of 1964)
4/5/64N-VAC Van De Kamps Discriminates Against Negroes This Must Stop Now, protest flyer. Bruce Hartford, N-VAC
4/10/64N-VAC N-VAC Invites You to Hear Gloria Richardson, leader of the Cambridge Non-Violent Action Committee. Flyer.
4/10/64N-VAC N-VAC Presents Gloria Richardson, Flyer.
4/64COREStop Double Sessions in Our Schools! L.A. CORE flyer. Undated (probably mid April 1964)
4/16/64CORELetter re the suspension of Brooklyn CORE (because of the Worlds Fair "stall-in"), James Farmer, CORE National Director,
4/26/64N-VAC N-VAC Freedom Rally flyer
4/27/64UCRCDear Friend mailing re negotiations and action against Thriftymart, Earl Walter, UCRC.
4/29/64UCRCBoycott Thriftymart Stores flyer, unsigned UCRC.
5/5/64COREChief Parker Resign! flyer opposing police brutality & malpractice. Unsigned CORE.
1964COREStudy History by Living It! Volunteer for Los Angeles CORE's Freedom Summer, undated flyer (probably April or May of 1964)
1964COREMore Action, Not Less Will Win!, Bruin CORE Bank of American flyer. Undated (probably May or June of '64)
7/13/64UCRCDear Friend mailing re shop-ins and protests against Thriftymart Stores, Brookins & Walter, UCRC.
7/24/64N-VAC Eight Convicted at Civil Rights Trial, L.A. Times newsclip
1964N-VACHandwritten courtroom sentencing notes, Bruce Hartford N-VAC. Undated (probably late summer or early fall of 1964)
1964N-VACDon't Eat Here, Van de Kamp's boycott flyer. Bruce Hartford, N-VAC. Undated (probably April-July, 1964)
1964N-VACN-VAC Protests Van de Kamp's Racist Hiring Practices, Bruce Hartford, N-VAC. Undated (probably April-July, 1964)
1964N-VACDon't Buy at Van de Kamp's, Bruce Hartford, N-VAC. Undated (probably April-July, 1964)
9/1/64LATCommunists and the U.S. Negro, editorial linking civil rights activities to communism, Los Angeles Times.
9/19/64 Rumford Act case data for first year, unsigned.
Fall 64? Ad HocThe Ad Hoc Committee to End Discrimination Needs Your Help, fund appeal flyer. Undated (possibly fall 1964)
1964DuBoisThe W.E.B. DuBois Clubs of America, Berkeley Branch, recruitment brochure. Undated (probably early fall, 1964)
1964DuBoisA Letter From the Los Angeles Organizing Committee, recruitment flyer. W.E.B. DuBois Club. Undated (probably late summer or early fall, 1964)
10/64N-VACLetter to Ad-Hoc Committee to End Discrimination (S.F. Bay Area) regarding police, arrests & trials. Bruce Hartford, undated (probably October 1964)
10/64N-VACExcerpt from Focus on Cambridge by Gloria Richardson. Unsigned N-VAC background info re Prop-14 boycott call. Undated, probably October 1964
10/64N-VACShall We Vote on Democracy???, unsigned N-VAC. Undated, probably October 1964
11/64N-VACNotes on the History of the Non-Violent Action Committee, Bruce Hartford (N-VAC)
1964CORECampus CORE Activities: Nov '63 - Nov '64, U.C. Berkeley CORE. Undated (late November or early December 1964)
12/1/64N-VAC 'Sip-In' Demonstrators Get Suspended Terms, L.A. Times newsclip

1965 or later
1965N-VACBoycott, Baby, Boycott: N-VAC 16 Point Program, Unsigned. Undated 1965
1965N-VACPolitical Program, unsigned N-VAC. Undated 1965


© Copyright
Webspinner: webmaster@crmvet.org
(Labor donated)