October 15

This Day in History

Vietnam War

Oct 15, 1969:

National Moratorium demonstrations held across the United States

National Moratorium antiwar demonstrations are conducted across the United States involving hundreds of thousands of people. The National Moratorium was an effort by David Hawk and Sam Brown, two antiwar activists, to forge a broad-based movement against the Vietnam War. The organization initially focused its effort on 300 college campuses, but the idea soon grew and spread beyond the colleges and universities. Hawk and Brown were assisted by the New Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam, which was instrumental in organizing the nation-wide protest.

One of the largest demonstrations occurred when 100,000 people converged on the Boston Common, but demonstrations nationwide also included smaller rallies, marches, and prayer vigils. The demonstrations involved a broad spectrum of the population, including those who had already participated in antiwar demonstrations and many who had never before raised their voices against the war. The protest, as a nationally coordinated antiwar demonstration, was considered unprecedented; Walter Cronkite called it "historic in its scope. Never before had so many demonstrated their hope for peace."

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