Concepcion Picciotto

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Concepcion Picciotto
Connie Picciotto 2012.jpg
Concepcion Picciotto, June 2012
Born Vigo, Spain
Known for Peace activism

Concepción Picciotto (born Concepción Martín in Vigo, Spain) also known as Conchita or Connie, is a peace activist living in Washington, DC. She has lived in Lafayette Square, Washington, D.C. on the 1600 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, in a peace camp across from the White House, since August 1, 1981, in protest of nuclear arms.[1][2] She has carried on the longest continuous act of political protest in the United States.[3]


Picciotto immigrated to the United States at the age of 18.[4] She worked in New York at the Spanish consulate. She fell in love with an Italian businessman and married him at 21. However, a bitter separation and custody battle cost her her home, her daughter and her job.

Concepción Picciotto at the White House Peace Vigil, June 2010

Picciotto was inspired by fellow activist William Thomas, who originally began the White House Peace Vigil on June 3, 1981 and died on January 23, 2009.[3][5][6] They began protesting on the sidewalk by the White House fence. National Park Service rules moved them across Pennsylvania Avenue. She was sentenced to 90 days for violating rules. They are moved, during inaugural parades.[7]

She is currently assisted by members of Occupy Peace House[8] where she resides.[9] Concepcion was reported to be in discussions with Ellen Thomas to remain in the Peace House, a house in Washington D.C. that Ellen inherited from her late husband.[10] Members from Occupy Washington DC reside in the Peace House with Concepcion. The house is now called Occupy Peace House and members are working towards ownership. It is a nonprofit home for local activists and those from around the world. It is referred to as The People's Embassy, a vision William Thomas had when he purchased the house.[11]


Concepcion Picciotto on June 15, 2010 at the White House

Picciotto was featured in Michael Moore's 2004 film Fahrenheit 9/11 as well as in veb-films Route 66 mockumentary.

The Oracles of Pennsylvania Avenue (2012) by Tim Wilkerson, a documentary commissioned by the Al Jazeera Documentary Channel, recounts the life of Concepcion, William and Ellen Thomas, and Norman Mayer.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Tanber, George Joseph (December 4, 1988). "A life of protest". The Blade (Google News Archive). p. 12. Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  2. ^ Associated Press (November 4, 1992). "For some, the vigil isn't over yet". Times-News (Google News Archive). p. 8A. Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b Mathes, Michael (March 15, 2009). "Washington protester who outlasts presidents". Agence France-Presse (The Sydney Morning Herald). Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  4. ^ Rogin, Josh (January 19, 2009). "Mr. Obama, Welcome to the Neighborhood". CQ Politics. Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  5. ^ Lee, Andrea (August 15, 2008). "CBC News - World - Pennsylvania Avenue's other famous couple". CBC News. Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  6. ^ Coronado, Kris (January 30, 2011). "Whatever Happened To... ... the protesters at Lafayette Square park?". The Washington Post. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  7. ^ Montgomery, David (June 3, 2006). "A Long Wait for Peace". The Washington Post. Retrieved 16 January 2013. 
  8. ^ Occupy Peace House
  9. ^ Walther, Konstanze (June 27, 2009). "D.C. vigil keeper gives peace a chance, shift by shift". The Philadelphia Inquirer (Richmond Times-Dispatch). Retrieved July 5, 2010. 
  10. ^ John Kelly (November 6, 2011). "For 30-year peace activist, a new battle". The Washington Post. 
  11. ^ "Occupy Peace House". 
  12. ^ "The Oracles of Pennsylvania Avenue". Al Jazeera World. 18 April 2012. 

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