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Woodstock, Changing America

Essay by review  •  December 19, 2010  •  Essay  •  745 Words (3 Pages)  •  952 Views

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To some, Woodstock was one of the biggest rock concerts ever, but to many others it was a huge historical event that changed America and its views on the Vietnam War forever. Woodstock was one of the biggest anti-Vietnam War movement to ever exist, it also marked the beginning of the Vietnam War as well. The concert was originally supposed to be held in a town named Woodstock, New York on Max Yasgur's 600 acre area, but was transferred to Bethel, New York because there was not enough room for the crowd expected(Pendercast 862). People were influenced to come because it was a concert that featured a lineup of the biggest and best names in the business at the time(NA "Where Have All The War Songs Gone? 1). The slogan decided on for Woodstock was "Three Days of Peace and Music". The festival hoped to draw approximately 150,000 people but ended up drawing over 500,000(NA "Did Woodstock Change America?" 3).If it weren't for Woodstock, rock and roll wouldn't be where it is today. Woodstock became a symbol of the 1960s American counterculture and a milestone in the history of rock music. The original plan for Woodstock had been to build a recording studio in the town of Woodstock (Sandow, 1).

Many were caught in traffic jams on the way to Woodstock and ended up walking. People walked as many as twenty miles to get to the concert, all the while singing songs of peace and love and carrying placards displaying their hippie sentiments(Hubbard 1). Originally, Woodstock was a buy-in-advance ticket concert, but ended up being completely free to almost anyone because the fences were torn down. Due to the number of people that attended, there were many shortages on food, medical supplies, and major problem with crowd control(Hubbard 3). Woodstock security consisted of a heavy guard for backstage and one hundred spaced-out troops from the legendary hog farm. Drugs were used widely at the festival, yet out of fear of rousing the crowd to hostility, fewer than 100 arrests were made on drug charges(Elliot 4). After the first day of the festival, the promoters hired the Hog Farm hippie commune to police the fair. They took care of kids on bad drug trips and acted as nurses to the few doctors at Woodstock(Zwerdling 4). Along with the mass drug use, thousands of people suffered from injuries such as colds, broken bones, and sore throats. Flowers, along with a dove perched upon a guitar, became the symbols of the festival. These images were painted on cars, clothes and even bodies. Their shabby clothes were a symbol of their freedom; their uniforms being faded jeans and worn tee shirts(Hermans 2). Through Woodstock the traditional way of life changed. Policies were rethought and music,



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