This Day in History

Nov. 15, 1969: Second Anti-War Moratorium

Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974
Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, US Foreign Policy, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements

In the fall of 1969, organizers in the D.C.-based Vietnam Moratorium Committee sponsored pro-peace anti-war moratoriums around the world. Protests large and small formed in cities across the globe. The date of the first moratorium organized by the Vietnam Moratorium Committee was Oct. 15, 1969. The second moratorium on Nov. 15 drew increased attention to the movement for its size and effect on major cities.

San Francisco moratorium march | Zinn Education Project

The San Francisco Moratorium Peace March, Nov. 15. About 250,000 people demonstrated in the West Coast city that day. Source: Harvey Richards Media Archive (click image for more).

On Saturday, Nov. 15, over 500,000 anti-war activists marched in D.C. and showed up at demonstrations throughout the country and the world. It followed the March Against Death demonstration held on Nov. 14, when people paraded down Pennsylvania Avenue carrying signs with the names of dead U.S. soldiers and names of destroyed Vietnamese towns. The Saturday protest featured a rally at the White House, where demonstrators sang and chanted to demand a peaceful end to the war.

“Casket of the Silent American” at the San Francisco Moratorium Peace March, Nov. 15. About 250,000 people demonstrated in the West Coast city that day. Source: Harvey Richards Media Archive (click image for more).

These were not the only moratoriums on the war. Read an eye-witness account of the earlier April 15, 1967 moratorium, by retired high school teacher Kipp Dawson, who was a student at the time.

Share these free downloadable lessons from the Zinn Education Project on the Vietnam War and the anti-war movement.