Sit-In Demonstration Site
Blue Boar Cafeteria
644 South Fourth Street
410 West Muhammad Ali Blvd.
(formerly Walnut Street)
One of two Blue Boar Cafeterias was located at this site. Blue Boar was part of a regional chain that primarily operated in the South. Known for their 'home-style" cooked fare, the restaurants were popular with downtown workers and shoppers for their reasonable prices and good food.
Demonstrations were conducted in front of the Blue Boar and other restaurants along Fourth Street from Broadway to Chestnut Street and other locations downtown. The Louisville Defender reported that 332 students and adults were arrested while conducting sit-ins and squat-ins at Kupies Double Burger on Fifth Street near Muhammad Ali (formerly Walnut street).
The Blue Boar Cafeterias were the sites of escalated violence by merchant policemen and customers against protesters. As students protested in front of the restaurants, some white patrons trampled over students using their knees and elbows to make their way.
Prior to the demonstrations only 10 of 135 restaurants located downtown were desegregated. In the wake of the protests 24 more opened their doors. The rest remained closed to African Americans until the passage of the public accommodations law in 1963. Blue
Boar and other cafeteria-styled restaurants went into a decline in the late 1960s and by the 1980s were largely absent, having been eclipsed by fast food restaurants.
"Freedom, Everybody Wants Freedom"
(sung by high school student protestors as they were led off to jail)
Dedicated to the memory of Dr. J. Blaine Hudson (September 8, 1949-January 5, 2013)
September 30, 2013
Sponsored by the University of Louisville: College of Arts and Sciences, Office of International, Diversity and Outreach Programs, Louisville Metro Council, Louisville Downtown Partnership, Office of th Mayor, Kentucky Commission on Human Rights