“A new concert of human relations being developed within the youthful underground must emerge, become conscious, and be shared so that a revolution of form can be filled with a Renaissance of compassion, awareness and love in the Revelation of the unity of all mankind…. The Human Be-In is the joyful, face-to-face beginning of the new epoch.” -San Francisco Oracle, Vol. 1, Issue 5, p. 2, 1967  

The Human Be-In, or the “gathering of the tribes,” occurred in January of 1967 in the Polo Fields of Golden Gate Park, and was attended by an estimated 20,000-30,000 people. Initiating the Summer of Love, the Be-In brought together political radicals from Berkeley, Beats from North Beach, hippies from the Haight, Hells Angels, and curious teenagers to connect through the use of drugs, peaceful anti-war protest, and personal empowerment. The public was invited to bring “costumes, blankets, bells, flags, symbols, drums, beads, feathers and flowers.” Indians represented a pure form of being to hippies and organizers of the event co-opted Native American imagery in a reach for authenticity.

San Francisco Beat poets Allen Ginsberg, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and Gary Snyder spoke and Timothy Leary urged attendees to “turn on, tune in, drop out.” San Francisco bands the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, and Quicksilver Messenger Service performed, and the Diggers, a community activist group, served thousands of free turkey sandwiches. Media coverage of the Be-In attracted young people from around the country to San Francisco and brought widespread attention to the hippie movement. The “love generation” was born.