Poverty Pickets Get Paper-Bag Dousing On Madison Avenue – 1966

Afternoon reading
Afternoon reading

Mad Men finally began Season 5 after a seventeen month hiatus, and opening the first episode was an incident fairly closely based on fact, and resonating with the current Occupy Wall Street movement. From the New York Times Archive, May, 28, 1966:

More than 300 poor people and antipoverty workers picketed the Madison Avenue headquarters of the Office of Economic Opportunity yesterday, demanding more money for city programs, but they received only a pelting by water bombs apparently thrown by irate office workers.

(click here to continue reading Poverty Pickets Get Paper-Bag Dousing On Madison Avenue – POVERTY PICKETS GET A DOUSING – Front Page – NYTimes.com.)

You have to be a subscriber to read the whole article (or be able to go to a library, how quaint). Here’s a few paragraphs I ran OCR1 on:

Shortly after the demonstration began, a series of handprinted signs were taped to the inside of the second-story windows of 285 Madison Avenue, half a block away. The building is occupied almost entirely by the Young & Rubicam advertising agency.

The signs read: “If’ you want money, get yourself a job”; “You voted for Lindsay, see him”; “Support your local police–no review board,” and “Goldwater ’68.”

A container of water was pitched out of one of the windows of the building, splashing two spectators.

Later, two demonstrators were hit by water-filled paper bags thrown from the building. One of the water bombs struck James Hill, 19 years old, of 224 York Street, Brooklyn, who then slipped and fell to the pavement. He was not hurt. The other struck 9-year old Mike Robinson of 777 Fox Street, the Bronx.

Mrs. Esmé Robinson, the boy’s mother, and several other angry women immediately went up to the sixth-floor offices of Young & Rubicam, from which several onlookers said they had seen the water bombs thrown.

But a secretary in the office said:”That’s ridiculous, they didn’t come from this floor. This is the executive floor. That’s utterly ridiculous.”

“Don’t you call us ridiculous. Is this what Madison Avenue represents?” shouted one of the women.

“And they call us savages,” exclaimed Mrs. Vivian Harris, another of the women.

Manager Apologizes

The women were invited to the second floor to meet with Frank Coppola, the Young & Rubicam office manager, who apologized for the incident. He told them:

“We have 1,600 people in this building, and I can’t control all of them. I’ve ordered all the windows closed and I have men patrolling all the floors to make sure this doesn’t happen again.”

Pretty much as portrayed on Mad Men…

New York TImes May 28 1966
New York TImes May, 28, 1966.PNG

  1. Optical Character Recognition []

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