Adam Clayton Powell, Jr.,’s Congressional Hearing On Harlem Street, NY, 1965

$(KGrHqJ,!lwE65n1q-zjBO8QDUI-vw~~60_57A photo of the first street Congressional Hearing of the Education and Labor Committee organized by Chairman Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., in Harlem, New York, Jul 26, 1965.

On the platform answering questions from the public are Chuck Stone, Adam Clayton Powell, James Roosevelt, Rep. Powell Ogden Reid, John Dent and Augusta Hawkins.

dak1442The hearing of the House Education and Labor Committee on the Harlem street corner regarding education of “Negroes” and the problem of poverty in New York City.

Powell presided over federal social programs for minimum wage and Medicaid (established later under Johnson); he expanded the minimum wage to include retail workers; and worked for equal pay for women; he supported education and training for the deaf, nursing education, and vocational training; he led legislation for standards for wages and work hours; as well as for aid for elementary and secondary education, and school libraries. Powell’s committee proved extremely effective in enacting major parts of President Kennedy‘s “New Frontier” and President Johnson’s “Great Society” social programs and the War on Poverty. It successfully reported to Congress “49 pieces of bedrock legislation”, as President Johnson put it in an May 18, 1966 letter congratulating Powell.

Powell was instrumental in passing legislation that made lynching a federal crime, as well as bills that desegregated public schools. He challenged the Southern practice of charging Blacks a poll tax to vote.