March on Washington Lit a Fire in Teens That Still Burns Decades Later


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Sarah Davidson was 15 in 1963 when she led teens from Little Rock to D.C., proving you’re never too young to fight for justice.

Sarah Davidson at the March on Washington in 1963. Credit: Photo courtesy of Sarah Davidson

Sarah Davidson of North Little Rock, Arkansas, was in fourth grade when the teenagers who would be dubbed “The Little Rock Nine” courageously integrated Central High School. 

“Many Black people were scared,” remembers Davidson of the 1957 campaign. “But they put me on the path I never stopped traveling. Even at 9-years-old, I didn’t feel less than.”

Davidson attributes her activism to a homelife that included mandatory reading of Black newspapers from across the country. Jet and Ebony magazines were also basic staples. She would regularly join her aunt at NAACP meetings, combining her eagerness to learn with an impatience to move. 

“I felt we spent a lot of time talking but not enough taking action,” says Davidson. At 14, she convinced the leadership to allow her to start a North Little Rock NAACP Youth Council. 

By the time she was 15, she was boarding a bus for an 18-hour life-transforming journey to the 1963 March for Jobs and Freedom.

Read more about Davidson’s life and accomplishments in the original article.

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