Rally at Birmingham BIRMINGHAM, Ala., Aug. 6 (UPI)—An integrated rally, to raise money to send Negroes to Washington for a massive integration march, ended abruptly last night when the makeshift stage partly collapsed.The UPI reporter seems to think the stage was the most interesting character at this remarkable event.
Johnny Mathis was singing his first number when the wooden stage at the Miles College stadium sagged and the lights went out.
L. H. Pitts, president of the college, said that when Mr. Mathis started singing, many people jumped on the stage, causing it to fall about two feet to the ground. The front part of the stage on which Mr. Mathis was standing remained upright.
—NYT, Wednesday, August 7, 1963