LGBT History

Historic Homes, History, Landmarks Preservation Commission

Top, left to right: GAA Firehouse, James Baldwin Residence, LGBT Community Center; Bottom, left to right: Audre Lorde Residence, Women’s Liberation Center, Caffe Cino; Photos courtesy of NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

Six sites significant to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community of New York City officially became city landmarks on Tuesday. The city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission voted to designate the Gay Activists Alliance Firehouse, the Women’s Liberation Center, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center, Caffe Cino, James Baldwin’s Upper West Side home, and the Staten Island home of Audre Lorde. The designations coincide with the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, as well as the city’s first time hosting WorldPride.

Find out more

Featured Story

Events, Features, History

“GAA and Vito Russo marching in 1st Christopher St Liberation Day Parade,” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1970.

Decades ago, New York City’s Pride Parade was controversial because it focused on LGBTQ rights. And while there’s always more work to be done, five decades later, the LGBTQ community has gained legal recognition and acceptance. And in sharp contrast to the first Pride March, the annual event now seems to attract as many politicians and corporate sponsors as it does activists. But one controversy persists—the Pride Parade route itself.

Route this way

Featured Story

Art, Features, History, Interviews

Photo of Gwen and “Girl Party Wallpaper” series, courtesy of Gwen Shockey

After 49 people were killed in a mass shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando in 2016, New York City artist Gwen Shockey gathered with queer people at the Cubbyhole and Stonewall Inn to mourn. The tragedy made Gwen think about the importance of lesbian bars and safe spaces for this community. She began talking with her friends, interviewing them about coming out and navigating NYC’s queer community. This laid the groundwork for Gwen’s 2017 “Addresses” project, a digital map marking more than 200 current and former queer and lesbian bars across the five boroughs. Using information from interviews she’s conducted and from police records and newspapers, Gwen found each location and photographed what sits there now.

“It felt like a secret pilgrimage, going to each location and looking for a site that was more or less invisible to everyone else around me,” she told us. And with just three lesbian bars remaining in NYC today, the need to preserve the memories of these places seems more apparent than ever. Through her project, which is ongoing, Gwen realized that although the number of lesbian bars in the city is dropping, there are “huge shifts occurring in the queer community toward inclusion not based on identity categories but based on who needs safe space now and who needs space to dance, to express their authenticity, and to be intimate.” Gwen shared with 6sqft the process of tracking the lesbian bars of NYC’s past and lessons she’s learned about the city’s LGBTQ history along the way.

Meet Gwen

History, Landmarks Preservation Commission

Top, left to right: GAA Firehouse, James Baldwin Residence, LGBT Community Center; Bottom, left to right: Audre Lorde Residence, Women’s Liberation Center, Caffe Cino; Photos courtesy of NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

During a hearing on Tuesday, New York City residents, members of the LGBTQ community, and elected officials voiced their support for the landmarking of six individual sites related to the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Advocates say the proposed landmarks would recognize groups and individuals who have advanced the LGBTQ rights movement. Ken Lustbader, co-director of the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project, urged LPC to preserve the sites. “The Landmarks Preservation Commission’s designation of these six LGBTQ sites has the power to provide both a tangible, visceral connection to what is often an unknown and invisible past and the intangible benefits of pride, memory, identity, continuity, and community,” Lustbader said on Tuesday.

Details here

Featured Story

Art, Events, Features

Last year’s Pride Parade, via Wiki Commons

Fifty years have passed since the Stonewall Uprising changed New York City forever and gave the world a symbol of the struggle for LGBTQ rights and recognition. There are a seemingly endless number of ways to celebrate this milestone, learn about the history of the gay rights movement and enjoy a rainbow of diversity. Heritage of Pride, the nonprofit organization behind New York City’s official LGBTQIA+ WorldPride events, offers an interactive map to help navigate the many events planned this month. Below, you’ll find 50 ways to celebrate Pride Month.

Pride, parades and parties, this way

City Living, History, maps

Mapping the lesbian bars and clubs of NYC’s past

By Devin Gannon, Mon, May 20, 2019

“Addresses Project” map via Gwen Shockey

Following the closure of Woodside’s Bum Bum Bar in March, only three lesbian bars remain in New York City. To preserve the history of these significate sites, local artist Gwen Shockey has spent five years tracking locations of former lesbian and queer clubs (h/t Daily News). Through an interactive map, Shockey has mapped more than two hundred addresses of venues that once hosted events for lesbians, relying mostly on word-of-mouth storytelling.

See the map

Chelsea, History, Landmarks Preservation Commission, Staten Island, Upper West Side , West Village 

Top, left to right: GAA Firehouse, James Baldwin Residence, LGBT Community Center; Bottom, left to right: Audre Lorde Residence, Women’s Liberation Center, Caffe Cino; All photos courtesy of NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

The city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission voted on Tuesday to calendar six individual sites related to the history of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in New York City. The proposed landmarks highlight both groups and individuals who have advanced the LGBT rights movement by providing structure for community and political support, as well as raising public awareness. The commission’s decision to calendar the sites comes ahead of next month’s 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising and NYC’s annual Pride celebration. LPC Chair Sarah Carroll said on Tuesday a public hearing to discuss the sites will be held June 4.

Find out more

Bronx, Events, History

Via Doc Searls on Flickr

This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, a watershed in the struggle for LGBT rights. In honor of the anniversary, Woodlawn Cemetery and the LGBT Historic Sites Project will offer a two-hour trolley tour taking visitors to the final resting places of some of Woodlawn’s most illustrious LGBT “permanent residents.”

Get tickets here

SIGN UP FOR OUR NEWSLETTERS

Thank you, your sign-up request was successful!
This email address is already subscribed, thank you!
Please provide a valid email address.
Please complete the CAPTCHA.
Oops. Something went wrong. Please try again later.