14 december 1968 & model cities vote
“Let's Build Our Model City with Soul” [bumper sticker]
#OTD 14 December 1968 Residents went to the polls today to choose 24 members for the Model Cities Commission, an elected body empowered to set policies for the city’s federally-financed “renewal project.” The Model Cities area was divided into 20 wards. Each ward had a seven-member council, six adults and one teenager (at least 15 years old). The 24-member commission was made up of the top adult vote-getter from each ward and four teens.
Free bumper stickers with the quote, “Let’s Build Our Model City WIth Soul” was distributed throughout the city to encourage voting. More than 188 residents filed petitions to serve on the commission.
Douglas Memorial Church (11th & H Sts NE) served as the Ward 20 polling place. In the above photograph are James Powell, poll watcher, Alfonso Stancil, and Joseph Yeldell, City Council member.
Your comments are welcome below. Did you, family members or neighbors vote in the Model Cities Commission election? Where did you vote? Were you a candidate? Were you a member of Douglas Memorial Church? Who was the pastor? Do you have photographs and other ephemera from 1968? Do you recognize the individuals in the photograph? You may comment privately here.
Photo source: Courtesy DC Public Library Special Collections, Evening Star Photo Collection, 14 December 1968. Silverman, photographer.
Also see George Washington University Special Collections, Capitol Hill Restoration Society Records, Folder 1 Metro-Capitol East Studies.