In 1963, eight years before National Public Radio hit the airwaves, WGBH was one of a network of radio stations dubbed the “Educational Radio Network” (ERN) that was in Washington DC to broadcast from the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. As the broadcast happened, quarter-inch tape was rolling in Boston, recording speeches delivered by Martin Luther King, Jr. and 23-year-old John Lewis of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee (a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Honor, given to him by President Obama), music performed by a very young Bob Dylan and Joan Baez, a candid interview with Marlon Brando…17 hours altogether. In 2003, two WGBH staff members looking in WGBH's Media Library and Archives vault, a large temperature-controlled space built specifically for the preservation of media, stumbled upon the reel-to-reel tapes of the ERN broadcast. It turns out these were the only tapes of the broadcast in existence! This month, as part of the 50th anniversary of the march, WGBH Radio will present a new documentary broadcast using the tapes to transport listeners back to Washington DC, 1963. 

Explore More Public Media about the 1963 March

The Educational Radio Network's Original Broadcasts
Listen to coverage of the March on Washington with interviews, and more. 


PBS Black Culture Connection
Watch a preview of The March, take a contemporary look at the legacy of the March, and watch first-person accounts.
World Channel Special Programming on 8/28/13

Brother Outsider

The Powerbroker: Whitney Young and the Fight for Civil Rights

Building the Dream

Stories from the US Civil Rights Movement

Eyes on the Prize

Citizen King

Freedom Riders

Classroom Guide
Teaching guide for The March on Washington and Its Impact: Background, activities and critical analysis.

The March
Tue, 8/27 at 9pm on WGBH 2
Witness to History: WGBH's Radio Coverage of the 1963 March on Washington
Wed, 8/28 on 89.7
A Beautiful Symphony of Brotherhood
Wed, 8/28 at 7pm on 99.5

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