On this day in 1967, the first national Black Power Conference convened

On this day in 1967, the first national Black Power Conference convened

On July 20, 1967, more than a thousand people from a wide array of community organizations and other groups convened in Newark to discuss the most pressing issues of the day facing African-Americans at the first national Black Power Conference.

It was one of the largest such gatherings of Black leaders, with representatives of nearly 300 organizations and institutions from 126 cities in 26 states, Bermuda and Nigeria.

The conference held workshops, presented papers for specific programs, and developed more than 80 resolutions calling for an emphasis on Black power in political, economic, and cultural affairs.

Only one resolution, a Black Power Manifesto, won official approval, but others were adopted in spirit.

Dr. Nathan W. Wright Jr., conference chairman facing microphones, said “We are going to set forth the need for developing programs that do not bring relief to people – but do bring power,” during a press conference prior to opening a four-day Black Power conference in Newark, N.J., July 20, 1967. Also seated is CORE representative Omar Ahmed. Others are unidentified. (AP Photo/John Duricka)

Uniformed men, some with the words “Mau Mau” on their helmets and some armed with machetes, stand outside the Episcopal Diocese headquarters in Newark, New Jersey, July 22, 1967, before delegates to a Black Power conference in the building routed newsmen attending a news meeting inside. Several newsmen were injured in the melee. Man at left holds a flag of the group. (AP Photo/John Duricka)

H. Rap Brown, left foreground, chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), listens July 20, 1967, as an official of the Conference on Black Power talks with a Newark police officer about three cars of patrolmen who parked within sight of convention delegates. A crowd of African Americans surrounded the cars of shotgun-carrying police, but conference officials, who termed the police appearance a provocation, persuaded the officers to leave. (AP Photo)

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