Our Summer of Riots
Speaking at an an outdoor rally on the St. Paul campus of the University of Minnesota on April 27, 1967, Martin Luther King warned his audience:
“I have an obligation to vigorously condemn the conditions in our society that cause people to feel they have no other alternative than to engage in self-defeating violence. Riots are the language of the unheard. Our summers of riots are caused by our winters of delay.”
Race riots swept through the North Side of Minneapolis in July of 1967. After the Aquatennial Parade, business on Plymouth Avenue were vandalized and fires were set all over the neighborhood. The photo above shows the burned out shell of a Country Club Market. It was reported that bands of youths roamed the area throwing rocks, bottles and Molotov cocktails. The riot ended after a couple hours, but a shooting set off another incident the following day. The result was 18 fires, 36 arrests, 3 shootings, 2 dozen people injured, and damages totaling 4.2 million. At least two more riots took place that summer and in many ways Plymouth Avenue has never recovered.