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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Newark Riots (July 12-17, 1967)

On July 12, 1967, a black cab driver, John Weerd Smith, was arrested in Newark. He refused to get out of the car, and had to be dragged into the Fourth Precinct police station. Rumors spread that Smith had been killed by the police. Molotov cocktails and rocks were thrown at the station. Stores were broken into, and two cars were destroyed. On July 13, there was more looting and violence. The National Guard was called in on July 14. The riots ended on July 17.

My father was in the National Guard, 50th Armored Division, 104th Engineer Battalion, and was called in during the Newark riots. One memory he shared with me is that the Salvation Army gave free coffee to the guardsmen. He really appreciated their kindness.

News Articles from the Events of July 1967 (Newark Public Library)
Police Summaries
With 40-Year Prism, Newark Surveys Deadly Riot
Collection of 1967 Newark Riots newsclippings, 1967-1987

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