American Experience
Firsthand Accounts Firsthand Accounts
Jean Ponder AllenKeith HackettMike AriasDiane Sikorski KramerJane BrotmanJim RowenJack CipperlyPaul SoglinJoe CostelloClark Welch
BeforeOctober 1967AftermathReflections

Jack Cipperly (1:20) video | transcript

I heard glass breaking and all I could see were clubs going up and down -- they had white clubs -- and the first rush, the crowd came back and then it went forward and then it came back and the second time it came back, I got knocked down over two women who were sitting there and then from there on it was just like a blur of activity. Some people were running out from the back, other people were trying to go forward and there was a lot of yelling and screaming and a lot of commotion and I got turned around another time and then police were coming through and I have to say, from my perception, the police were not intentionally trying to cause harm to people, but there was sort of a mood that had changed -- there was a transformation of the mood -- where they went from sort of a demonstration to kind of resistance in some ways.

So I think that both sides were defensive in some way, but anyway, a policeman came through and I grabbed a hold of him and he grabbed a hold of me and fortunately for me it was Jerry Gritsmacher who I'd gone through high school with and I said, "Jerry, what are you doing?" He said, "Well, Jack what are you doing?"

More about Jack Cipperly

Two Days in October American Experience PBS