Watch The March, the Masterful, Digitally Restored Documentary on The Great March on Washington

The March on Wash­ing­ton for Jobs and Free­dom, one of the largest human rights ral­lies in Amer­i­can his­to­ry, took place 50 years ago today in Wash­ing­ton, D.C.. Mar­tin Luther King Jr. spoke that day, deliv­er­ing his famous “I Have a Dream” speech. Joan Baez sang “We Shall Over­come,” the anthem of the civ­il rights move­ment, while Bob Dylan per­formed “When the Ship Comes In” and Odet­ta sang “I’m On My Way.”

In 1964, the direc­tor James Blue released a doc­u­men­tary called The March. Pro­duced under the aus­pices of the Unit­ed States Infor­ma­tion Agency, the film proved to be a “visu­al­ly stun­ning, mov­ing, and arrest­ing doc­u­men­tary of the hope, deter­mi­na­tion, and cama­raderie embod­ied by the demon­stra­tion.” And while the film ini­tial­ly sparked some con­tro­ver­sy (read the account here), it has had a big impact on audi­ences inside and out­side the US through­out the decades.

In 2008, The March was select­ed for preser­va­tion in the Unit­ed States Nation­al Film Reg­istry by the Library of Con­gress. To cel­e­brate the 50th anniver­sary of the The March for Jobs and Free­dom, the US Nation­al Archives has com­plet­ed a full dig­i­tal restora­tion of the film. You can watch it free above, or find it in the Free Doc­u­men­taries sec­tion of our col­lec­tion of 550 Free Movies Online.

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Nichelle Nichols Tells Neil deGrasse Tyson How Mar­tin Luther King Con­vinced Her to Stay on Star Trek

Mal­colm X at Oxford, 1964

James Bald­win Bests William F. Buck­ley in 1965 Debate at Cam­bridge Uni­ver­si­ty

Robert Penn War­ren Archive Brings Ear­ly Civ­il Rights to Life

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