With a large map detailing plans to shut down Washington in 1971

Greg Moore (cover art) et al., MAY FLOWERS. NP: [May Day Collective, 1971].
Folio tabloid (16 ½”h x 11 3/8”w) printed in color, 16pp. Gentle toning at extremities and some edge tears of 1” or less. About very good.

An extremely rare tabloid issued in advance of the May 1971 anti-war protests in Washington, whose ultimate objective was to demonstrate the Peace Movement’s ability to shut down the Federal Government. With a large map indicating locations to be targeted in and around the city.

“On May 3, 1971, after nearly two weeks of intense antiwar protest in Washington, DC, ranging from a half-million-person march to large-scale sit-ins outside the Selective Service, Justice Department, and other government agencies, some 25,000 young people set out to do something brash and extraordinary: disrupt the basic functioning of the federal government through nonviolent action…. An elaborate tactical manual distributed in advance detailed twenty-one key bridges and traffic circles for protesters to block nonviolently, with stalled vehicles, improvised barricades, or their bodies. The immediate goal was to snarl traffic so completely that government employees could not get to their jobs. The larger objective was “to create the spectre of social chaos while maintaining the support or at least toleration of the broad masses of American people.””


“The protest certainly interfered with business as usual in Washington: traffic was snarled, and many government employees stayed home. Others commuted to their offices before dawn, and three members of Congress even resorted to canoeing across the Potomac to get themselves to Capitol Hill. But most of the planned blockades held only briefly, if at all, because most of the protesters were arrested before they even got into position. Thanks to the detailed tactical manual, the authorities knew exactly where protesters would be deployed. To stop them from paralyzing the city, the Nixon Administration had made the unprecedented decision to sweep them all up, using not just police but actual military forces.” (“In 1971, The People Didn’t Just March on Washington—They Shut It Down,” at Longreads.com, taken from L. A. Kauffman, Direct Action: Protest and the Reinvention of American Radicalism)

It is not clear whether the tabloid offered here is one and the same as the “tactical manual” referred to above. It does however contain a very large full-page map (15 3/8”h x 21 3/8”w) detailing 21 targets, including among others all the Potomac bridges, the city’s major traffic circles, and highway interchanges near the Pentagon.

OCLC 38552867 (Brown University and Wisconsin Historical Society only).