BIRMINGHAM, Ala., May 6, 1963 (UPI)-Hundreds of Negroes gathered for another mass rally today, encouraged by yesterday's first march on city jail in a 34-day racial desegregation campaign that did not result in mass arrests. One group of at least 100 Negroes marched in columns of threes into the Sixth Street Baptist Church, the main meeting house where the demonstrations are launched.
All streets leading to the church were crowded with Negroes headed for the rally. Those inside the church began singing of "freedom" songs and waited for instructions from leaders.
More than 2,000 singing, chanting Negroes yesterday marched six blocks from a Negro church to a park across from the city jail. They were permitted by police to hold a 15-minute demonstration aimed at bolstering the spirits of more than 1,200 Negroes jailed for previous demonstrations.
Burke Marshall, head of the Justice Department's civil rights division, was in Birmingham to spearhead efforts to ease racial pressures. But mayor Albert Boutwell said he has not been in touch with Marshall nor has Marshall contacted him about any possible truce in the racial disorders.
Both sides remained tight-lipped about the negotiations. U. S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy canceled a weekend trip to keep an eye on the tense situation in this Deep South industrial center.
Negro leaders predicted students who began skipping school by the hundreds last week to take part in the drive would play hooky en masse today to participate.
The Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., who predicted complete success for the protest movement in a sermon in Atlanta yesterday, was back here today to spearhead the drive.
Police Commissioner Eugene (Bull) Connor had police keep a tight rein on the march yesterday and set up barricades complete with fire hoses around the park, but the demonstration was not broken up.