How Many People Attended the Women’s March in DC?

Don’t believe the numbers that say only half a million people attended the Women’s march in DC. I know there were at LEAST a million people there, and that’s being conservative. I realize this is not scientific, but what the heck. My guesstimate is 1,750,000! I think it’s more accurate than the numbers I’ve been hearing, and I had to get this out of my system.

Here’s how I got to a number, visually. The pink star is where we were standing.

Here’s my map of the march, and how I calculated the number of people who marched.

How many people attended the Womens march in DC

How I calculated 1.5 million people

  • I used the photo from the Obama Inauguration, where there were 2 million people on the Mall. It’s in the center of the map.
  • That image is 760 x 320px.
  • To be conservative and eliminate parts of the photo that weren’t shown, I calculated this at 1.5 million.
  • I cut slices of the photo to overlay on the streets that led into the mall. (It was so crowded on every street you couldn’t get a tissue out of your pocket.)
  • Each strip is 16 px high.
  • 760 divided by 16 = 48 strips.
  • Each strip represents 31, 250 people.
  • I rounded each strip off at 25,000 people to be conservative.
  • I used the 48 strips representing 1.5 million people and overlaid them on the streets. (Some were smaller, some larger, so I averaged the length of the strips.)

Let’s be conservative and let each strip represent 25,000 people.

The 3 main avenues alone held a million people. Here’s how I figured that:

In the photo below, look at the avenues running parallel to the Mall: Constitution, Independence and Pennsylvania Avenues. DC built these avenues really wide, thank you. They were absolutely jam packed, as were the many streets feeding into them. Here’s the math.

  • The width of the 3 main avenues equals 230 feet
  • The mall is 300 feet wide
  • Laying them side by side, they would occupy about 2/3 of the area of the mall
  • If the Mall held 1.5 million, just those streets alone held 1 million people

NOTE: These strips only count people on the STREETS, NOT on the Mall itself.  This photo (courtesy of Reuters) really shows what DC looked like. The mall is not completely packed because many were not able to get onto it. I probably missed counting people on the map who were standing in the Washington Monument area too.


So, my calculations tell me this:

  • There were at least 1.5 million people in the streets and avenues surrounding the mall.
  • If we add in, say, 250,000 people shown on the Mall itself (again, conservatively and about as many as the Trump inauguration ;—))
  • That comes to 1,750,000

The number of Metro riders on Saturday was about half a million, consistent with the Obama inauguration. There were hundreds of busses on the roads and the trains were sold out.

Again, this is not a scientific calculation, but I think this is a lot closer to the real number of women, men, kids and happily, millennials that were there. Everyone peacefully protested without even a fistfight in the most difficult circumstances imaginable. (Well OK, it could have been colder.) There was so much trust I was overwhelmed.

There was a positive, happy mood all day.

It was an amazing experience. Listen up, GOP!

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