The New York Times reviews the play Incubator which dealt with the consequences of homosexuality in an all-male school. The play was produced by Arthur Edison and George Burton and ran for only 7 performances.
WMCA, a radio station in New York, broadcast a show in response to a letter from a man who was arrested after a police officer made advances. A judge who was a guest stated that the author of the letter had no right to complain about the entrapment and that police should use such tactics to weed out homosexuals.
Timothy Donald Cook (born November 1, 1960) is an American business executive, currently serving as the chief executive officer of Apple Inc. Cook previously served as the company’s chief operating officer under its co-founder Steve Jobs. In 2014, Cook be-came the first chief executive of a Fortune 500 company to publicly come out as gay. Cook also serves on the boards of directors of Nike, Inc. and the National Football Foundation, and is a trustee of Duke University.
Connecticut decriminalizes private consensual adult homosexual acts.
Canada’s first gay rights magazine The Body Politic goes on sale.
Hal Holbrook co-starred with Martin Sheen in the controversial and acclaimed television film That Certain Summer. The film was directed by Lamont Johnson. The teleplay, by Richard Levinson and William Link, was the first to deal sympathetically with homosexuality. Produced by Universal Television, it was broadcast as an ABC Movie of the Week on November 1. A novelization of the film written by Burton Wohl was published by Bantam Books. The film won a Golden Globe for Best Movie Made for TV. It sensitively explore homosexuality through the story of an American housewife (Hope Lange) losing her husband (Hal Holbrook) to a young artist (Martin Sheen).
New Hampshire decriminalizes private consensual adult homosexual acts.
The book Overcoming Homosexuality by Robert Kronemeyer suggests that a strict vegetarian diet may “cure” gays and lesbians.
Independent Hollywood producer Jerry Wheeler announces that production of The Front Runner by Patricia Nell Warren (born June 15, 1936), will begin in late September of 1985, but it didn’t happen. The book was Warren’s first novel and the first contemporary gay fiction to make the New York Times Best Seller list.
A University of Minnesota study reveals that there is a one-in-three chance that a gay teen boy will attempt suicide.
Nancy Katz becomes the first openly lesbian judge in Illinois when she was sworn in as a Cook County associate judge.
TV’s Ally McBeal (Calista Flockhart) enjoys a prolonged kiss with her office nemesis, Ling (Lucy Liu). Seventeen million viewers tuned in, the show’s largest audience.
Taiwan Pride, the first gay pride parade in the Chinese-speaking world, was held in Taipei, with over 1,000 people attending. It has taken place annually since then, but still, many participants wear masks to hide their identity because homosexuality remains a social taboo in Taiwan. However, the 2010 parade attracted 30,000 attendees and increasing media and political attention, highlighting the growing rate of acceptance in Taiwan. Since 2010, there has also been a pride parade in Kaohsiung, which attracted over 2,000 people.
The Church of Sweden begins allowing same-sex marriages and the use of the term “marriage” for same-sex couples.
Angie Zapata (5 August 1989–17 July 2008, a transgender woman, was murdered in Greeley, Colorado. Allen Andrade was convicted of first-degree murder and committing a bias-motivated crime, because he killed her after he learned that she was transgender. This case was the first in the nation to get a conviction for a hate crime involving a transgender victim. Angie Zapata’s story and murder were featured on Univision’s Aqui y Ahora television show on November 1, 2009.
Audrey Gauthier was elected president of CUPE 4041 representing Air Transat flight attendants based in Montreal. She thus becomes the first openly transgender person elected president of a union local in Canada.
Mandy Carter is born (born 1948). She is an African American lesbian activist. She is a former Executive Director and one of the six co-founders of the North Carolina-based Southerners on New Ground (SONG). Carter was a four-year (1996-2000) North Carolina Member-At-Large of the Democratic National Committee (DNC), and a member of both the DNC Gay and Lesbian Caucus and the DNC Black Caucus. She was a delegate at the 2000 Democratic National Convention, as well as one of the four co-chairs for the daily meeting of the DNC Gay and Lesbian Caucus.
Three men are accused of having sex with teenagers in Boise, Ida-ho, setting off a politically motivated 15-month investigation of local gay male networks. Some 1,400 people are questioned in the McCarthy Era witch-hunt that results. Dozens are arrested, nine men are imprisoned for as long as 15 years, and an untold number of gay men flee the city.
Singer k. d. (Kathryn Dawn ) lang (November 2, 1961) is born in Consort, Alberta. She is a multiple Grammy-winning pop singer/songwriter and an androgynous, unapologetic gay woman (her choice of words), one of the first performers of her caliber ever to come out. Lang is also known for being an animal rights, gay rights, and Tibetan human rights activist. She performed Leonard Cohen‘s Hallelujah live at the opening ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and brought the world to tears.
Just four months after the Stonewall riots Craig Rodwell, his partner Fred Sargeant, Ellen Broidy, and Linda Rhodes of the newly formed Gay Liberation Front proposed the first “gay pride parade” which was then called the Christopher Street Liberation Day March to be held in New York City by way of a public resolution at the Eastern Regional Conference of Homophile Organizations (ERCHO) meeting in Philadelphia. Meetings to organize the march began in early January at Rodwell’s apartment in 350 Bleeker Street not far from the site of the Stonewall bar. At first there was major difficulty getting some of New York organizations like Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) to send representatives. In the end Rodwell, Sargeant and Broidy, along with Michael Brown, Marty Nixon, Brenda Howard of the Gay Liberation Front and Foster Gunnison of the Mattachine Society made up the core group. The West Coast held a march in Los Angeles on June 28, 1970 and a march and ‘Gay-in’ in San Francisco. In Los Angeles, Morris Kight (Gay Liberation Front LA founder), Reverend Troy Perry (Universal Fellowship of Metropolitan Community Churches founder) and Reverend Bob Humphries (United States Mission founder) gathered to plan a commemoration. They settled on a parade down Hollywood Boulevard. But securing a permit from the city was no easy task. They had more difficulty with Los Angeles than New York City. Rev. Perry recalled the Los Angeles Police Chief Edward M. Davis telling him, “As far as I’m concerned, granting a permit to a group of homosexuals to parade down Hollywood Boulevard would be the same as giving a permit to a group of thieves and robbers.” Grudgingly, the Police Commission granted the permit though there were fees exceeding $1.5 million. After the American Civil Liberties Union stepped in, the commission dropped all its requirements but a $1,500 fee for police service. That, too, was dismissed when the California Superior Court ordered the police to provide protection as they would for any other group. The eleventh-hour California Supreme Court decision ordered the police commissioner to issue a parade permit cit-ing the “constitutional guarantee of freedom of expression.” From the beginning, L.A. parade organizers and participants knew there were risks of violence. Kight received death threats right up to the morning of the parade. Unlike what we see today, the first gay parade was very quiet. The Advocate reported “Over 1,000 homosexuals and their friends staged not just a protest march but a full-blown parade down world-famous Hollywood Boulevard.”
A nationwide poll of U.S. doctors revealed 67% were in favor of the repeal of sodomy laws.
The Eastern Regional Conference of Homophile Organizations votes at its convention to abandon the Annual Reminder demon-stration in Philadelphia in favor of an event to commemorate the Stonewall Riots. This proposed event would eventually blossom into the first Christopher Street Liberation Day, held on June 28, 1970.
SAGE-Senior Action in a Gay Environment is founded in New York City with the goal of improving the lives of lesbian and gay seniors.
A United Methodist Church committee found that operators of a church campground in Des Plaines, Illinois discriminated when they refused to rent a cabin to a gay couple.
Brookside is a British soap opera with gay characters set in Liverpool, England that ran for 21 years until November 4, 2003. Originally intended to be called Meadowcroft, the series was produced by Mersey Television and was conceived by Phil Redmond who also devised Grange Hill (1978-2008) and Hollyoaks (1995-present).
Voters in eleven U.S. states back constitutional amendment bans on same-sex marriage. The states are Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Utah.
Voters in El Paso, Texas pass an initiative that strips health insurance benefits from the unmarried partners of city employees. Supporters say that their intention was to target gay city employees and their partners.
The U. S. Internal Revenue Service announces that it intends to issue a formal agreement known as a “notice of acquiescence” with the 2010 United States Tax Court decision in O’Donnabhain v. Commissioner, allowing people to deduct the costs for treating gender identity disorder from their federal income taxes. The issue for the court was whether a taxpayer who has been diagnosed with gender identity disorder can deduct sex reassignment surgery costs as necessary medical expenses under 26 U.S.C. § 213. The IRS argued that such surgery is cosmetic and not medically necessary. The case was brought by Rhiannon O’Donnabhain, a transgender woman who underwent sex reassignment surgery in 2001.
The Bath newspaper reports that Mary Hamilton (d. March 14, 1719), alias Charles, George, and William Hamilton, will be publically whipped then sent to prison for six months for fraud for im-personating a man. Hamilton marries as many as 14 women who think she’s male. She is repeatedly caught and escapes to another town.
László Ede Almásy de Zsadány et Törökszentmiklós (3 November 1895 – 22 March 1951) was a gay Hungarian aristocrat, motorist, desert explorer, aviator, Scout leader and sportsman who served as the basis for the protagonist in both Michael Ondaatje’s novel The English Patient (1992) and the movie adaptation of the same name (1996).
Jamison Green (born November 8, 1948) is a transgender rights activist. Green has served on the boards of the Transgender Law and Policy Institute and the Equality Project, was an advisory board member of the National Center for Transgender Equality, and chaired the board of Gender Education and Advocacy. He served as president of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health from 2014 to 2016. He was the leader of FTM International from March 1991 to August 1999. Green helped establish the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index in 2002 and was a member of the organization’s Business Council until late 2007 when he resigned over the organization’s stance on transgender inclusion in the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Green began presenting on the fair treatment of transgender workers in 1989. He has published several essays and articles, wrote a column for PlanetOut.com and has appeared in eight documentary films. Green authored Becoming a Visible Man in 2004. The book combines two strands: autobiographical writing about Green’s transition from living as a lesbian to living as a bisexual trans man, as well as broader commentary about the status of transsexual men in society. The book received the 2004 Sylvia Rivera Award for best book in Transgender Studies from the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies and was also a finalist for a 2004 Lambda Literary Award.
Tee Corinne (November 3, 1943 – August 27, 2006) was a photographer, author, and editor notable for the portrayal of sexuality in her artwork. According to Completely Queer: The Gay and Lesbian Encyclopedia, “Corinne is one of the most visible and accessible lesbian artists in the world.” Tee came out in 1975 at which time she was in a relationship with filmmaker Honey Lee Cottrell (January 16, 1946 – September 21, 2015). Over the years, Corrine embarked upon relationships with Caroline Overman (early 1980s), Lee Lynch (mid 1980’s) and Beverly Anne Brown (1989–2005). In 2003, Brown was diagnosed with cancer which led to Corinne’s series Cancer in our Lives (2003-5). Corinne died on the 27th of August 2006 in Southern Oregon after a struggle with liver cancer. She was 62 years old. Her manuscript collection was donated to the University of Oregon Libraries and is now housed in the library’s Special Collections unit. The collection includes correspondence, literary manuscripts, artwork, photographs, artifacts, and other documents that reflect Corinne’s life and work.
Bella Abzug (July 24, 1920 – March 31, 1998) was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. A lesbian and gay ally, she would become the first to introduce a gay rights law in Congress. Nick-named “Battling Bella,” she was an American lawyer, a U.S. Representative, social activist and a leader of the Women’s Movement. In 1971, Abzug joined other leading feminists including Gloria Steinem, Shirley Chisholm, and Betty Friedan to found the National Women’s Political Caucus. Abzug declared, “This woman’s place is in the House—the House of Representatives” in her successful 1970 campaign. She was later appointed to chair the National Commission on the Observance of International Women’s Year, to plan the 1977 National Women’s Conference by President Gerald Ford, and led President Jimmy Carter’s commission on women.
A front-page article about the success of the gay news magazine The Advocate appears in the Wall Street Journal.
Harvey Milk (May 22, 1930-November 27, 1978) is elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. He is the first openly gay person to serve on the Board and one of the nation’s highest profile gay political figures. Milk served almost eleven months in office and was responsible for passing a stringent gay rights ordinance for the city. On November 27, 1978, Milk and Mayor George Moscone were assassinated. Milk was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009.
Gus Harris, mayor of the Toronto borough of Scarborough, calls for gay rights at a Human Rights rally. The Gay Human Rights Day rally was organized by Ontario gay rights group CGRO. Messages of support were read from Stuart Smith and Michael Cassidy, leaders, respectively, of Ontario’s two opposition parties, the Liberals and the NDP.
A committee of Toronto city council considers the Bruner Report on relations between the police and gay community. It asks the police chief to issue a statement recognizing legitimacy of the gay community and setting up gay awareness program for police recruits, but nothing is done.
U.S. Senator John Glenn tells the National Gay Task Force that he does not support gay rights legislation and will not do anything which might be considered advocacy or promotion of homosexuality. He would later add that LGB (T was not considered yet) people should not be allowed to teach or join the military.
In Colorado, 53 percent of voters approve Amendment 2, an initiative banning state and municipal rights ordinances for lesbians and gay men. “Family values” organizations in more than 35 states begin campaigning for similar propositions. In Oregon, voters reject Measure 9, an initiative similar to Amendment 2.
Tammy Baldwin (born February 11, 1962) (D-WI) is elected to the United States House of Representatives. She is the first open lesbian and the first non-incumbent gay candidate to be elected to federal office. Today, she is a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin and a member of the Democratic Party. She previously served as the Representative from Wisconsin’s 2nd congressional district from 1999 to 2013 as well as serving three terms in the Wisconsin Assembly representing the 78th district. She is the first woman elected to represent Wisconsin in the Senate and the first openly gay U.S. senator in history. Baldwin defeated her Republican opponent, former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson, in the 2012 U.S. Senate election.
Hawaii voters approve a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage.
A jury found Aaron McKinney guilty of felony murder and second degree murder in the death of 21-year-old gay college student Matthew Shepard.
Kye Allums (born October 23, 1989) is a former college basketball player for the George Washington Colonials women’s basketball team of George Washington University (GWU) and a transgender pioneer. He is now a transgender advocate, public speaker, artist, and mentor to LGBT youth. In 2010, Allums, a trans man, became the first openly transgender NCAA Division I college athlete. Kye produced a project called I Am Enough which encourages other LGBTQ individuals to come out and talk about their experiences. The project allows individuals to submit their stories to showing people who share the same issues that they are not alone. In 2015, he was inducted into the National Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame.
The general election results in three legislative firsts: Sarah McBride (August 9, 1990) wins the Senate race for Delaware District 1 and becomes the nation’s first person who publicly identifies as transgender to serve as a state senator; Ritchie Torres (born March 12, 1988) wins the House race for New York District 15, and becomes the first Black member of Congress who identifies as gay; and Mauree Turner (born 1992 or 1993) wins the race for Oklahoma State House for District 88, and becomes the first non-binary state legislator in U.S. history and first Muslim lawmaker in Oklahoma.
Shakuntala Devi (4 November 1929 – 21 April 2013) is born. She was an Indian writer and mental calculator, popularly known as the “human computer.” A child prodigy, her talent earned her a place in the 1982 edition of The Guinness Book of World Records. As a writer, Devi wrote a number of books, including novels as well as texts about mathematics, puzzles, and astrology. She wrote the first study of homosexuality in India, The World of Homosexuals. It treated homosexuality in an understanding light and Devi is considered a pioneer in the field. In the documentary For Straights Only, she said that her interest in the topic came out of her marriage to a homosexual man and her desire to look at homosexuality more closely to understand it.
Barbara Grier (November 4, 1933 – November 10, 2011) was an American writer and publisher. She is credited for having built the lesbian book industry. After editing The Ladder magazine, published by the lesbian civil rights group Daughters of Bilitis, she co-founded a lesbian book-publishing company Naiad Press, which achieved publicity and became the world’s largest publisher of lesbian books. She built a major collection of lesbian literature, catalogued with detailed indexing of topics. Grier realized she was a lesbian at age twelve after researching the topic at the library. When Grier was fifteen, her mother gifted her a copy of The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall and Of Lena Geyer (1936) by Marcia Davenport. This would be the start of Grier’s collection of lesbian literature. She describes her collection of lesbian-themed books as Lesbiana, a collection that was fueled by a “love affair with lesbian publishing.” In 1957, Grier subscribed to The Ladder, a magazine edited by members of the Daughters of Bilitis. Grier began writing book reviews for The Ladder, using multiple pen names in her writings including Gene Damon, Marilyn Barrow, Gladys Casey, Terry Cook, Dorthy Lyle, Vern Niven, Lennox Strong, and Lee Stuart. In 1973, Grier co-founded Naiad Press along with Donna McBride, Anyda Marchant, and Muriel Crawford (Marchant’s partner) with $2,000 pooled among them. Their first publication was a novel titled The Latecomer (1974), by Anyda Marchant, written under her pseudonym Sarah Aldridge. The cover art came from lesbian artist Tee Corinne. Their initial audience came from the mailing list for The Ladder. Grier and McBride ran Naiad from Kansas City until 1980 when it relocated to Tallahassee, Florida. Both Grier and McBride continued to work other full-time jobs until 1982 when they dedicated all their time to the publishing company. Naiad Press went on to become the world’s largest publisher of lesbian books. Naiad Press’ most controversial publication was Lesbian Nuns: Breaking Silence, a work of non-fiction that was banned in Boston and criticized by the Catholic Church. Penthouse Forum ran a series from the book which made Naiad an internationally known publishing name. Grier paid ex-nuns Rosemary Curb and Nancy Manahan a half million dollars for the book which landed Grier on numerous talk shows.
Lesbian Patricia Elaine Gilmore (November 4, 1934-May, 10, 2021) was born in Toledo, Ohio. She entered the Dominican Convent in Adrian, Michigan at age 19. She received her B.S. and M.S. (Chemistry) from Sienna Heights College in Adrian, and an M.A. (English) from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. While in the convent Pat served as a teaching nun and taught primarily math and science in communities from Chicago to Charleston to the Dominican Republic. She left the convent in 1968 and taught English at the middle school level in the East Detroit School District until her retirement in 1995. Pat moved to Windsor, Canada and pursued her writing career in earnest. She wrote short stories, plays, poems and a novel. She was published in many literary journals including Green’s Magazine, Canadian Writer’s Journal, The Storyteller Anthology, Pudding House Magazine, Sinister Wisdom, Women’s Voices and Maize. Pat moved to Bodega Bay in 2005 and lived there for 15 years until failing health forced her to move to Sonoma. In addition to writing, she enjoyed birding and was an avid photographer. Her home in Bodega Bay overlooked the Pacific and the beautiful Sonoma Coast which served as an inspiration for much of her poetry.
Photographer Robert Mapplethorpe (November 4, 1946 – March 9, 1989) is born. He was known for his sensitive yet blunt treatment of controversial subject matter in the large-scale, highly stylized black and white medium of photography. His most controversial work is that of the underground BDSM scene in the late 1960s and early 1970s of New York City. The homoeroticism of this work fueled a national debate over the public funding of controversial artwork.
Essex Hemphill (April 16, 1957-November 4, 1995) was an openly gay African American poet and activist. He is known for his contributions to the Washington, D.C. art scene in the 1980s, and for openly discussing topics pertinent to the African American gay community. In the 1990s, Hemphill would rarely give information about his health, although he would occasionally talk about “being a person with AIDS.” It was not until 1994 that he wrote about his experiences with the disease in his poem Vital Signs. He died on November 4, 1995, of AIDS-related complications. After his death, on December 10, 1995, three organizations (Gay Men of African Descent – GMAD), Other Countries, and Black Nations/Queer Nations) announced a National Day of Remembrance for Essex Hemphill at New York City’s Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center.
FDNY firefighter, president emeritus of FireFLAG/EMT and LGBT Rights activist Tom Ryan (Nov. 4, 1960) is born. Ryan retired from FDNY in 2003 after a distinguished FDNY career and is a hero of 9/11. He has worked tirelessly for the issues effecting LGBT Fire-fighters and Emergency Workers, continues to speak out on issues of homophobia in the fire services, the rights of domestic partners, and discrimination toward the gay community.
Syndicated columnist Nicholas von Hoffman’s piece entitled Out of TV’s Sitcom Closet appears. It stated that Americans were experiencing the “Year of the Fag” and claimed the National Gay Task Force was controlling at least one sitcom.
Barney Frank (born March 31, 1940) (D, Mass.) is elected to his first term in the U.S. House of Representatives. He served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Massachusetts from 1981 to 2013. As a member of the Democratic Party, he served as chair of the House Financial Services Committee (2007–2011) and was a leading co-sponsor of the 2010 Dodd–Frank Act, a sweeping reform of the U.S. financial industry. Frank was considered the most prominent gay politician in the United States.
In California paranoid perennial presidential candidate and nutjob Lyndon LaRouche was at the height of the hysterical anti-gay backlash that had sprung up against the growing AIDS epidemic. He founded his Prevent AIDS Now Initiative Committee (PANIC) which gathered enough signatures to place Proposition 64 onto the ballot. Prop 64, also known as the LaRouche Initiative, would have placed AIDS on California’s list of communicable diseases under the state’s public health law which would have effectively forced anyone who was HIV-positive out of their jobs and schools and into a quarantine. Luckily, despite support by Congressman William E. Dannemeyer, Prop 64 lost in a landslide, 71% to 29%. LaRouche brought it back again in 1988 as Prop 69 and lost by an even wider margin. He also made that AIDS quarantine the centerpiece of his 1988 presidential campaign, which again he lost.
California voters approve Proposition 8 making same-sex marriage in California illegal, becoming the first U.S. state to do so after marriages had been legalized for same-sex couples. The amendment to California’s constitution passed by a margin of 52% to 47% and overturned the state supreme court’s ruling in May in favor of same-sex marriage.
Arizona and Florida voters pass constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage.
Arkansas voters pass Act 1 which effectively bans adoption by same-sex couples, by a margin of 54% to 41%. Florida had done so in 1978.
Spanish conquistador Vasco Nunez de Balboa discovers a community of cross-dressing males in present-day Panama and, according to reports, feeds at least 40 of them to his dogs.
William Minton, a 19 year old servant, is used as bait to entrap Capt. Edward Rigby, the first homosexual victim of entrapment by the Society for the Reformation of Manners. He was tried for sodomy. These Societies were formed in hamlets, London, in 1690, with their primary object being the suppression of bawdy houses and profanity. A network of moral guardians was set up, with four stewards in each ward of the City of London, two for each parish, and a committee, whose business it was to gather the names and addresses of offenders against morality, and to keep minutes of their misdeeds. By 1699 there were nine such societies, and by 1701 there were nearly 20 in London, plus others in the provinces, all corresponding with one another and gathering information and arranging for prosecutions.
New York Times critic Howard Taubman launches an attack on “the increasing incidence of homosexuality on the New York stage” in an article headlined “Not What It Seems: Homosexual Motif Gets Heterosexual Guise.”
The Homosexual Information Center protests at the offices of the Los Angeles Times because of the newspaper’s refusal to print the word “homosexual” in ads. The Times would not print an ad an-nouncing a group discussion on homosexuality.
The New York Times reports that the Gay Activists Alliance’s petition to incorporate as a non-profit organization was rejected because of the use of the word “gay” in the organization’s name. The Gay Activists Alliance (GAA) was founded in New York City on December 21, 1969, almost six months after the Stonewall riots, by dissident members of the Gay Liberation Front (GLF). Some early members included Jim Owles, Marty Robinson, Tom Doerr (1947-August 2, 1987) (who introduced the lambda symbol into the gay movement. Originally the lambda sign referred to the political work of the Gay Activists Alliance and “it was only later that it became a sign for gay liberation in general), photojournalist Kay Lahusen (born January 5, 1930), journalist Arthur Bell (November 6, 1939 – June 2, 1984), author Arthur Evans (October 12, 1942 – September 11, 2011), Bill Bahlman, author Vito Russo (July 11, 1946 – No-vember 7, 1990), transgender rights activist Sylvia Rivera (July 2, 1951 – February 19, 2002), drag queen Marsha P. Johnson (August 24, 1945 – July 6, 1992), Jim Coles, bisexual rights activist Brenda Howard (December 24, 1946 – June 28, 2005), David Thorstad (born June 6, 1941), Michael Giammetta and Morty Manford (son of PFLAG founder Jeanne Manford). GAA’s first president was Jim Owles.
The Supreme Court of the United States in Wainwright v. Stone finds that the sodomy law of Florida is not unconstitutionally vague, reversing a Fifth Circuit ruling.
Elaine Noble (born January 22, 1944) becomes the first openly gay or lesbian individual to be elected to a state legislature in the United States when she is elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Inspired by Noble, Minnesota state legislator Allan Spear (June 24, 1937 – October 11, 2008) comes out in a newspaper interview. In 1986 Noble and Ellen Ratner formed an LGBT alcohol and drug treatment center in Minneapolis called the Pride Institute. More recently she has worked as a healthcare administrator and a realtor. Noble had a relationship with writer Rita Mae Brown (born November 28, 1944) in the 1970s and has since retained privacy regarding her personal life. She lives in Florida.
The San Francisco Board of Supervisors passes legislation to protect people with AIDS from discrimination.
A New York State Bar Association committee issues a recommen-dation that low-income same-sex couples be granted access to state-subsidized housing.
A clause prohibiting anti-gay verbal abuse in public schools was repealed by the Fairfax (VA) county board of education because of complaints that it encouraged homosexuality.
The U.S. Congress kills an amendment by Rep. Frank Riggs (R-CA) which would have barred San Francisco from spending federal housing money to implement its domestic partner ordinance.
A judge in Saskatchewan rules that same-sex couples have the right to marry in that province.
Strauss v. Horton, a legal challenge to Proposition 8, is filed. Proposition 8, known informally as Prop 8, was a California ballot proposition and a state constitutional amendment passed in the November 2008 California state elections. The proposition was created by opponents of same-sex marriage in advance of the California Supreme Court’s May 2008 appeal ruling, In re Marriage Cases, which followed the short-lived controversy, found the previous ban on same-sex marriage (Proposition 22, 2000) unconstitutional. Proposition 8 was ultimately ruled unconstitutional by a federal court (on different grounds) in 2010, although the court decision did not go into effect until June 26, 2013, following the conclusion of proponents’ appeals.
2009, Viet Nam
Pham le Quynh Tram, born intersex and assigned male at birth, successfully petitions the government for legal recognition as a woman. In 2013, the People’s Committee of the southern province of Binh Phuoc ordered the local Department of Justice to revert to recognizing Tram as a male and to refer to her as Pham Van Hiep, her birth name. In addition to the Department of Justice rescinding Tram’s initial recognition, the officials who first approved it are reportedly ordered to be penalized.
In the Virginia Colony, Richard Cornish was hanged for sodomy. His execution was the first of its kind to be recorded in the Ameri-can colonies.
One hundred men are indicted for sodomy in the Mexican Inquisi-tion under the Duke of Albuquerque. Fourteen are burned to death. Another, because he was young, was lashed 200 times and sold to a bricklayer.
Hans Hermann von Katte (28 February 1704 – 6 November 1730) is executed in Prussia. Frederick the Great (Fredrick II of Prussia) was thought to be lovers with Katte. They planned to escape Prussia together, but were discovered. The court sentenced Katte to life in prison but refused to judge the prince. Fredrick’s father thought this too lenient and ordered Katte executed and Fredrick imprisoned. Frederick was awakened at 5:00 AM and told to look out his prison window at the execution of Katte. He called out to him “My dear Katte, a thousand pardons.” Katte called back, “My prince, there is nothing to apologize for” just before he was beheaded.
Arthur Bell (November 6, 1939 – June 2, 1984) is born. He was a journalist and activist, one of the founding members of the Gay Activists Alliance. Bell wrote his first piece for the Village Voice in 1969, an account of the Stonewall riots, a confrontation between police and the patrons of a gay bar called the Stonewall Inn that be-came a flashpoint of the Gay Liberation movement. Bell died at the age of 44 from complications related to diabetes.
An anti-Viet Nam march in New York includes a gay contingent. The Student Mobilization Committee’s Gay Task Force joined the protest to draw attention to parallels between America’s oppression of gays and the racism of Viet Nam.
A Special Joint Committee on Canada’s Immigration Policy recommends that homosexuals no longer be prohibited from entering Canada under the revised Immigration Act.
Patrick Dennis (May 18, 1921-November 6, 1976) dies at the age of 55 in New York City. His novel Auntie Mame: An Irreverent Escapade (1955) was one of the best-selling American books of the 20th century. On December 30, 1948, Dennis married Louise Stickney with whom he had two children. He led a double life as a conventional husband and father and as a bisexual in later life, becoming a well-known participant in Greenwich Village’s gay scene.
Bent is a 1979 play written by Martin Sherman. that revolves around the persecution of gays in Nazi Germany, and takes place during and after the Night of the Long Knives a purge that took place from June 30 to July 2, 1934. Chancellor Adolf Hitler, urged on by Hermann Göring and Heinrich Himmler, ordered a series of political extrajudicial executions intended to consolidate his power and alleviate the concerns of the German military about the role of Ernst Röhm who Hitler allowed himself to be convinced was the homosexual and intended to stage a coup.
Voters decide to turn a previously unincorporated portion of Los Angeles into the nation’s first “Gay City,” West Hollywood. They elect a gay majority for their new city council.
San Francisco voters approve a domestic partners referendum and elect two lesbians to the Board of Supervisors.
Deborah Glick (born December 24, 1950) becomes the first openly gay or lesbian individual elected to the legislature of New York. Her political activity began in college and her involvement in grass roots organizing continues today. She has focused on areas relating to civil rights, reproductive freedom, lesbian and gay rights (LGBT rights), environmental improvement and preservation, and the arts.
By a margin of two to one, voters in Tacoma, Washington reject a ballot initiative which would have reinstated a gay civil rights law repealed by voters in November 1989.
Voters in Seattle reject Initiative 35 which would have repealed an ordinance granting domestic partnership rights for medical leave and bereavement leave.
Voters in Maine approve a constitutional amendment overturning a voter-approved 2009 ballot measure that banned same-sex marriage in the state.
Maryland voters also approve Question 6 in response to the enactment of the Civil Marriage Protection Act on March 1, 2012, thus allowing same-sex couples to obtain a civil marriage license after January 1, 2013 and also protecting clergy from having to perform any particular marriage ceremony in violation of their religious beliefs.
Minnesota voters reject Amendment 1 that would have constitutionally defined marriage as one man and one woman
Washington State voters approve Referendum 74 legalizing same-sex marriage.
Spain’s highest court upholds same-sex marriage laws
Tammy Baldwin (born February 11, 1962) becomes the first openly gay or lesbian politician and the first Wisconsin woman elected to the U.S. Senate. She previously served as the Representative from Wisconsin’s 2nd congressional district from 1999 to 2013, as well as serving three terms in the Wisconsin Assembly representing the 78th district.
America’s first all-LGBT city council was elected in Palm Springs, consisting of three gay men, a transgender woman and a bisexual woman.
Democratic U.S. Representative Jared Polis (born May 12, 1975) wins the Colorado governor’s race, becoming the nation’s first openly gay man to be elected governor as well as the first Jewish governor of Colorado. A member of the Democratic Party, he served one term on the Colorado State Board of Education from 2001 to 2007 and five terms as the United States Representative from Colorado’s 2nd congressional district from 2009 to 2019. During his time in Congress, he was the only Democratic member of the libertarian conservative Liberty Caucus. He was elected governor of Colorado in 2018, defeating Republican nominee Walker Stapleton.
Kyrsten Sinema makes history as the first open bisexual member of the U.S. Senate.
Sharice Davids (born May 22, 1980), a Democrat from Kansas, made history Tuesday by becoming the first openly LGBTQ Kansan elected to Congress. She joins Debra Haaland of New Mexico, another winning Democrat on Tuesday, as the first two Native American women elected to Congress.
Vice Versa, the first North American lesbian publication, is written and self-published by Edythe D. Eyde (November 7, 1921-December 22, 2015), better known by her pen name Lisa Ben. She was an American editor, author, and songwriter. Ben produced the magazine for a year and distributed it locally in Los Angeles in the late 1940s. She was also active in lesbian bars as a musician in the years following her involvement with Vice Versa. Eyde has been recognized as a pioneer in the LGBT movement.
Roy Franklin Simmons (November 8, 1956-February 20, 2014) is born. He was the second former NFL player to come out as gay and the first to disclose that he was HIV-positive.
San Francisco drag queen Jose Sarria (December 13, 1922 – August 19, 2013), also known as The Grand Mere, Absolute Empress I de San Francisco, is the first openly gay candidate to run for a political office. He shocks political observers by garnering nearly 6,000 votes in his bid for a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. This feat marked the beginning of the notion that gays could represent a powerful voting bloc. Sarria helped found the Society for Individual Rights (SIR) in 1963.
California votes to defeat the Briggs initiative (Prop 6) which would have barred lesbians and gay men from teaching in public schools.
Battling a Prop 6 type of initiative, Seattle voters soundly reject Initiative 13, an anti-Anita Bryant move, and vote to keep their city’s gay rights ordinance.
Janet Flanner (March 13, 1892 – November 7, 1978) was an American writer and journalist who served as the Paris correspondent of The New Yorker magazine from 1925 until she retired in 1975. She wrote under the pen name “Genêt”. She also published a single novel, The Cubical City, set in New York City. In 1918, the same year she married her husband, she met Solita Solano (1888 – 22 November 1975) in Greenwich Village and the two became lifelong lovers although both became involved with other lovers throughout their relationship. Solano was drama editor for the New York Tribune and also wrote for National Geographic. The two women are portrayed as “Nip” and “Tuck” in the 1928 novel Ladies Almanack by Djuna Barnes, a friend of Flanner’s. In 1975, Flanner returned to New York City permanently to be cared for by Natalia Danesi Murray. She died on November 7, 1978, of undetermined causes. Flanner was cremated and her ashes were scattered along with Murray’s over Cherry Grove in Fire Island where the two had met in 1940, according to Murray’s son in his book Janet, My Mother, and Me.
Voters in Concord, California repeal a city ordinance banning discrimination against people with AIDS.
ABC lost $1.5 million in pulled ads when the television show Thirty Something showed two men in bed together.
Vito Russo (July 11, 1946 – November 7, 1990) dies of complications from AIDS at the age of forty-four. He was an American LGBT activist, film historian and author who is best remembered as the author of the book The Celluloid Closet (1981, revised edition 1987). In 1983, Russo wrote, produced, and co-hosted a series focusing on the gay community called Our Time for WNYC-TV public television. He co-found the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD), a watchdog group that monitors LGBT representation in the mainstream media and presents the annual GLAAD Media Awards. Russo was diagnosed with HIV in 1985 and died of AIDS-related complications in 1990. His work was posthumously brought to television in the 1996 HBO documentary film The Celluloid Closet, co-executive produced and narrated by Lily Tomlin. Russo’s papers are held by the New York Public Library.
Maine voters reject the Act to Limit Protected Classes which would have outlawed anti-discrimination ordinances for lesbians and gay men and nullified Portland’s 1992 gay and lesbian rights ordinance.
The Australian Christian Coalition announces that it will fight gay and environmental activists in the next election.
People Like Us LGBTQ group applies for registration as a society.
British Member of Parliament Nick Brown (born 13 June 1950) comes out after he learned that a previous lover had offered to sell his story. He is a British Labour Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Newcastle upon Tyne East since 1983. He has served as Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Minister of State for Work and Pensions and Deputy Chief Whip. He has also served three separate terms as the Labour Party’s Chief Whip, from 1997 to 1998, 2008 to 2010, and from 2016 to the present. His terms as chief whip spanned periods in both government and opposition.
The people of Oregon reject Measure 9, a proposal that would have outlawed any affirming discussion of gay or lesbian people in schools. Rejecting homophobia, they become one of the first states in which the voters themselves support the provision of accurate, unbiased education about sexual orientation.
Arizona becomes the first state to reject a ballot measure banning same-sex marriage.
The court rules unanimously that a local law against cross-dressing is in violation of the state constitution.
Janet Reno (July 21, 1938 – November 7, 2016) dies from Parkin-son’s disease. Janet served as the Attorney General of the United States from 1993 until 2001, the first woman to serve as Attorney General and the second-longest serving Attorney General in U.S. history after William Wirt. In her home state of Florida, she was elected to the office of State Attorney five times.
Lisa Middleton (born 1953) is the first open transgender person to be elected to any city council position in California. Her win in Palm Springs was decisive.
Virginia voters elect the state’s first openly transgender candidate to the Virginia House of Delegates. Danica Roem unseats incumbent delegate Bob Marshall who had been elected thirteen times over 26 years. Roem becomes the first openly transgender candidate elected to a state legislature in American history.
Andrea Jenkins (born 1961) is an American politician, writer, performance artist, poet, and transgender activist. She is known for being the first Black openly transgender woman elected to public office in the United States, serving since January 2018 on the Minneapolis City Council. She is the city council’s vice president.
Intersex Solidarity Day
Intersex Solidarity Day, November 8, is also known as Intersex Day of Remembrance and marks the birthday of Herculine Barbin (November 8, 1838 – February 1868), a now-famous French intersex person.
Jamison Green (born November 8, 1948) is a transgender rights activist. Green has served on the boards of the Transgender Law and Policy Institute and the Equality Project, was an advisory board member of the National Center for Transgender Equality, and chaired the board of Gender Education and Advocacy. He served as president of the World Professional Association for Transgender Health from 2014 to 2016. He was the leader of FTM International from March 1991 to August 1999. Green helped establish the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index in 2002 and was a member of the organization’s Business Council until late 2007 when he resigned over the organization’s stance on transgender inclusion in the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Green began presenting on the fair treatment of transgender workers in 1989. He has published several essays and articles, wrote a column for Plan-etOut.com and has appeared in eight documentary films. Green authored Becoming a Visible Man in 2004. The book combines two strands: autobiographical writing about Green’s transition from living as a lesbian to living as a bisexual trans man, as well as broader commentary about the status of transsexual men in society. The book received the 2004 Sylvia Rivera Award for best book in Transgender Studies from the Center for Lesbian and Gay Studies and was also a finalist for a 2004 Lambda Literary Award.
Harvey Milk (May 22, 1930 – November 27, 1978) is elected to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, making him the first openly gay man to be elected in a major U.S. city. Although he was the most pro-LGBT politician in the United States at the time, politics and activism were not his early interests; he was neither open about his sexuality nor civically active until he was 40, after his experiences in the counterculture movement of the 1960s.
Samuel Falson (born 8 November 1982), better known by his stage name Sam Sparro, is an Australian singer, songwriter and music producer. Sparro is openly gay.
Oregon voters repeal an executive order which prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation among state government employees.
Mary Robinson Therese Winifred (born 21 May 1944), whose platform includes gay rights, is elected as the predominantly Catholic country’s President. She is an Irish independent politician who served as the 7th, and first female, President of Ireland from December 1990 to September 1997. She resigned as president to become the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights from 1997 to 2002. In 2004 she received Amnesty International’s Ambassador of Conscience Award for her work in promoting hu-man rights. Robinson is the twenty fourth, and first female, Chan-cellor of University of Dublin (i.e. Trinity College). She represented the University in the Senate for over twenty years and held the Reid Chair in Law. In July 2009, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor awarded by the United States. The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission congratulated Robinson, saying she “helped advance recognition of the human rights of LGBT people in her capacity as President of Ireland and as United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. She has been unwavering in her passionate call to end torture, persecution, and discrimination against LGBT people globally.”
The East Nashville Cooperative Ministry denies membership to Dayspring Christian Fellowship, a mostly gay and lesbian congregation.
The Republican right sweeps elections across the U.S., but there are some gay and lesbian gains including new state legislature representatives and senators in Arizona, California, and Rhode Island, and one reelected in Texas. An anti-gay and lesbian rights initiative, Proposition 1, is defeated in Idaho.
PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) ads regarding preventing suicide and bullying are refused by television stations around the country. All stations refused to air the suicide ad and only two cable stations and one network affiliate station would air the gay-bashing ad. PFLAG is told the ads offended community standards.
Tribal Chief Norbert Makoni addresses Parliament, saying gays and lesbians should be sentenced to whipping.
Transgender activists protest outside the offices of the American Psychiatric Association in Washington D.C.
Obscenity trial for the classic novel The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall (12 August 1880 – 7 October 1943) begins. The book portrays lesbianism as natural. The star witness for the defense, Norman Haire, testifies that one could not become homosexual by reading books any more than one “could become syphillic by reading about syphilis.”
Ti-Grace Atkinson (born November 9, 1938) is an American radical feminist author and philosopher. As an undergraduate, Atkinson read Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex, and struck up a correspondence with de Beauvoir who suggested that she contact Betty Friedan. Atkinson thus became an early member of the National Organization for Women (NOW), which Friedan had co-founded, serving on the national board, and becoming the New York chapter president in 1967. Atkinson’s time with the organization was tumultuous, including a row with the national leadership over her attempts to defend and promote Valerie Solanas and her SCUM Manifesto in the wake of the Andy Warhol shooting. In 1968 she left the organization because it would not confront issues like abortion and marriage inequalities. She founded the October 17th Movement, which later became The Feminists, a radical feminist group active until 1973. By 1971 she had written several pamphlets on feminism, was a member of the Daughters of Bilitis and was advocating specifically political lesbianism. Her book Amazon Odyssey was published in 1974. “Sisterhood,” Atkinson famously said, “is powerful. It kills. Mostly sisters.”
Kate Clinton (born November 9, 1947) is an American comedian specializing in political commentary from a gay/lesbian point of view. She began her stand-up career in 1981 using her lesbianism, Catholicism and current politics for her jokes. Clinton is a self-described “fumerist,” or feminist humorist. She has lived in New York City and Provincetown, Massachusetts, with her partner Urvashi Vaid (born 8 October 1958) since 1988.
John Megna (November 9, 1952 – September 4, 1995) was an American actor. His best known role is that of “Dill” in the film To Kill A Mockingbird. Megna died from AIDS-related complications in Los Angeles, at the age of 42.
Actor Rock Hudson (November 17, 1925 – October 2, 1985) marries his agent’s secretary Phyllis Gates to squelch rumors about his sexual orientation, rumors which were unknown to Gates. Suspicious, Gates hired private eye Fred Otash. Hudson was an American actor, generally known for his turns as a leading man during the 1950s and 1960s. Viewed as a prominent “heartthrob” of the Hollywood Golden Age, he achieved stardom with roles in films such as Magnificent Obsession (1954), All That Heaven Allows (1955) and Giant (1956) for which he received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actor, and found continued success with a string of romantic comedies co-starring Doris Day in Pillow Talk (1959), Lover Come Back(1961) and Send Me No Flowers (1964). After appearing in films including Seconds (1966), Tobruk (1967) and Ice Station Zebra (1968) during the late 1960s, Hudson began a second career in television through the 1970s and 1980s, starring in the popular mystery series McMillan & Wife and the primetime ABC soap opera Dynasty. In 1955, Confidential magazine threatened to publish an exposé about Hudson’s secret homosexuality. Agent Willson stalled this by disclosing information about two of his other clients. Willson provided information about Rory Calhoun’s (August 8, 1922 – April 28, 1999) years in prison and the arrest of Tab Hunter (July 11, 1931 – July 8, 2018) at a party in 1950. According to some colleagues, Hudson’s homosexual activity was well known in Hollywood throughout his career, and former co-stars Elizabeth Taylor and Susan Saint James claimed that they knew of his homosexuality as did Carol Burnett. Shortly before his death from AIDS-related complications, Hudson made the first direct contribution, $250,000, to amFAR, the American Foundation for AIDS Research, helping launch the non-profit organization dedicated to AIDS/HIV research and prevention; it was formed by a merger of a Los Angeles organization founded by Dr. Michael S. Gottlieb, Hudson’s physician, and Elizabeth Taylor, his friend and onetime co-star, and a New York based group.
The Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission rules that “sex” in the Human Rights Act includes sexual orientation and begins formal proceeding against University of Saskatchewan for discriminating against teacher Doug Wilson who had been fired after coming out.
Openly gay Terry Sweeney (born March 23, 1950) joins the cast of Saturday Night Live. Terry Sweeney’s partner is Lanier Laney (born March 18, 1956), a comedy writer who also wrote for SNL in the 1985–1986 season. According to a 2000 magazine article, they first met as members of a sketch comedy troupe called the “Bess Truman Players” before joining SNL. Laney and Sweeney were also writing partners for Saturday Night Live during the 1985–1986 season, the film Shag, and the Syfy Channel cartoon Tripping the Rift. As of 2012, the couple reside in Beaufort, South Carolina.
Actor Nikki Blonsky (born November 9, 1988) is born. The Hair Spray actor came out as a “proud gay woman.” “For me, it was a long time coming,” she told the Hollywood Reporter. “I was wanting to date women and it just was a moment in my life where I was finally just really ready to be myself.”
Kate Brown (born June 21, 1960) is sworn in as governor of Oregon, the day after she was officially elected to the office. She is bisexual and is the country’s first openly bisexual statewide office-holder and first openly bisexual governor. Brown took over the governorship in February 2016, without an election after Democrat John Kitzhaber resigned amidst a criminal investigation. She is the 38th and current Governor of Oregon. Brown, a Democrat and an attorney, previously served as Oregon Secretary of State and as majority leader of the Oregon State Senate, where she represented portions of Milwaukie and of Northeast and Southeast Portland. Brown lives in Portland, with her husband Dan Little. She has two step-children. Brown was re-elected to a full term as governor on Nov. 6, 2018.
Walt Whitman (May 31, 1819 – March 26, 1892) is accused of homosexuality and Leave of Grass was called “a mass of stupid filth” by critic Rufus Griswold. Whitman was an American poet, essayist, and journalist. A humanist, he was a part of the transition between transcendentalism and realism, incorporating both views in his works. Whitman is among the most influential poets in the American canon, often called the father of free verse. His work was very controversial in its time, particularly his poetry collection Leaves of Grass, which was described as obscene for its overt sexuality.
The New York Times reported that forty distinguished witnesses including T. S. Eliot, Arnold Bennett, Vera Brittain, Ethel Smyth and Virginia Woolf appeared in a London in support of Radclyffe Hall to testify in favor of the lesbian novel The Well of Loneliness which was in the midst of an obscenity trail. The judge refused to hear any of them. The judge applied the Hicklin test of obscenity: a work was obscene if it tended to “deprave and corrupt those whose minds are open to such immoral influences.” He held that the book’s literary merit was irrelevant because a well-written obscene book was even more harmful than a poorly written one. The topic in itself was not necessarily unacceptable; a book that depicted the “moral and physical degradation which indulgence in those vices must necessary involve” might be allowed, but no reasonable person could say that a plea for the recognition and toleration of inverts was not obscene. He ordered the book destroyed and the defendants to pay court costs.
Diane Marian Torr (10 November 1948 – 31 May 2017) is born. She was an artist, writer and educator, particularly known as a male impersonator as her drag king “Man for a Day” and gender-as-performance workshops. For the last years of her life, Torr lived and worked in Glasgow, where she was Visiting Lecturer at the Glasgow School of Art. Since 1990, Torr taught “drag king” workshops in which women learn not only to dress as a man but also codes of behavior, gesture, body language and movement that constitute the performance of masculinity. The workshops which Torr taught widely in Europe, the USA, India and Turkey, have been hugely influential, inspiring other works and a documentary film. Diane Torr was one of the original members of the all-girl art band, DISBAND (along with members Martha Wilson, Ingrid Sischy, Ilona Granet and Donna Henes). DISBAND formed in 1978 and most recently performed at the Incheon International Women Artists’ Biennial (2009) in S. Korea.
The Stanford Gay Students Union was formed. It was the second Stanford organization for gay students; a previous organization, the Student Homophile League, was short lived.
Lynn Ransom of Oakland, California, wins custody of her children in court. She is the first open lesbian mother to do so.
Toronto’s civic election sees defeat of George Hislop (June 3, 1927 – October 8, 2005), the first openly gay candidate to run for municipal office in Canada. He was a key figure in the early development of Toronto’s gay community. Hislop studied speech and drama at the Banff School of Fine Arts, graduating in 1949. He subsequently worked as an actor, and ran an interior design company with his partner, Ron Shearer. In 1971, Hislop co-founded the Community Homophile Association of Toronto, one of Canada’s first organizations for gays and lesbians. On August 28, 1971, he was also an organizer of We Demand, the first Canadian gay rights demonstration on Parliament Hill. In honor of his role as a significant builder of LGBT culture and history in Canada, a portrait of Hislop by artist Norman Hatton is held by the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives’ National Portrait Collection.
A former policeman fires a submachine gun into two Greenwich Village gay bars in New York City, killing two men and wounding six others.
Labour Member of Parliament (MP) Chris Smith (born 24 July 1951) becomes the first member of the House of Commons to voluntarily come out. Christopher Robert Smith, Baron Smith of Finsbury is a British politician, a former Member of Parliament and Cabinet Minister; and former chairman of the Environment Agency. For the majority of his career he was a Labour Party member. He was the first openly gay British MP, coming out in 1984, and in 2005, the first MP to acknowledge that he is HIV positive.
Republican lobbyist Craig Spence dies by suicide after it was discovered he gave secret tours of The White House to call boys and ran a male prostitution ring. Spence’s name came to national prominence in the aftermath of a June 28, 1989 article in the Washington Times identifying Spence as a customer of a homosexual escort service being investigated by the Secret Service, the District of Columbia Police and the United States Attorney’s Office for suspected credit card fraud. The newspaper said he spent as much as $20,000 a month on the service. He had also been linked to a White House guard who has said he accepted an expensive watch from Mr. Spence and allowed him and friends to take late-night White House tours. Spence entered a downward spiral in the wake of the Washington Times exposé, increasingly involving himself with call boys and crack, culminating in his July 31, 1989 arrest at the Barbizon Hotel on East 63rd St in Manhattan for criminal possession of a firearm and criminal possession of cocaine. Months after the scandal had died down, and a few weeks before Spence was found in a room at the Boston Ritz-Carlton Hotel, he was asked who had given him the “key” to the White House. Michael Hedges and Jerry Seper of the Washington Times reported that “Mr. Spence hinted the tours were arranged by ‘top level’ persons,” including Donald Gregg, national security adviser to Vice President George H. W. Bush, at the time the tours were given. A few months before his death, Spence alluded to more intricate involvements. “All this stuff you’ve uncovered (involving call boys, bribery and the White House tours), to be honest with you, is insignificant compared to other things I’ve done. But I’m not going to tell you those things, and somehow the world will carry on.”
On the television program Roseanne, Sandra Bernhard plays the first recurring lesbian character on a sitcom.
The Louisiana Baptist Convention voted 581-199 to exclude congregations which condone homosexuality. A similar resolution was approved the same day by the North Carolina State Baptist convention.
The Portland, Maine school committee approved a ban on anti-gay discrimination in public school employment.
Keith Boykin (born August 28, 1965) of the National Black Lesbian and Gay Leadership Forum and California state assemblywoman Sheila Kuehl (born February 9, 1941) participate in a White House conference on Hate Crimes.
Over 1,000 Hijra (transgender women of South Asia with a long history) hold a Pride parade to celebrate the one-year anniversary since the government recognized them as a third gender.
An Act for the Punishment for the Vice of Buggery is passed by the Irish House of Commons, making anal intercourse punishable by hanging. The primary advocate of the act is Anglican Bishop John Atherton.
Maude Ewing Adams Kiskadden (November 11, 1872 – July 17, 1953), known professionally as Maude Adams, was an American actress who achieved her greatest success as the character Peter Pan, first playing the role in the 1905 Broadway production of Peter Pan or The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up. Adams’s personality appealed to a large audience and helped her become the most successful and highest-paid performer of her day, with a yearly income of more than one million dollars during her peak. She had two long-term relationships that ended only upon her partners’ deaths: Lillie Florence, from the early 1890s until 1901, and newspaper publisher Mary Louise Boynton (1868 – March 3, 1951) from 1905 until 1951.
Frances V. Rummell (Nov. 11, 1907 – May 11, 1969) is born. She was an educator and a teacher of French at Stephens College. Using the nom de plume Diana Fredericks, she wrote the book Diana: A Strange Autobiography in 1939 which was the first explicitly lesbian autobiography in which two women end up happily together. The book was published with a note saying, “The publishers wish it expressly understood that this is a true story, the first of its kind ever offered to the general reading public.” The author’s niece verified that the Frances was a lesbian and that the book followed her life rather accurately.
Ella Wesner (1841 – November 11, 1917) dies. She was the most celebrated male impersonator of the Gilded Age Vaudeville circuit. Wesner began her career at the age of nine as part of a family of vaudeville and musical-stage dancers. By her mid-twenties, she was playing both male and female roles, at some point meeting and working as a “dresser” for the most notorious, and perhaps the earliest Vaudeville male impersonator of the time, Annie Hindle. Wesner’s career was briefly derailed in 1873 when she abruptly left the stage to elope to Paris with the notorious Helen Josephine “Josie” Mansfield (December 15, 1847 – October 27, 1931) who had been the mistress of Gilded Age Robber Baron “Diamond Jubilee” Jim Fisk as well as the mistress of his murderer, Edward S. Stokes.
In Los Angeles, Harry Hay, Rudi Gernreich, Dale Jennings, Bob Hull and Chuck Rowland, hold the first meeting of the Society of Fools. The weekly gatherings leading to the formation of a homophile organization the men will call the Mattachine Society.
Two members of Gays of Ottawa lay wreath at National War Me-morial. It is the first time gays are allowed to participate in ceremony.
NBC airs An Early Frost starring Aidan Quinn. It’s the first major made-for-TV movie about AIDS and is broadcast in the U.S. on prime time. A Chicago lawyer goes home to tell his parents that he is gay and HIV positive. The film won numerous awardsincluding the Peabody Award which honors the most powerful, enlightening and invigorating stories in television, radio and digital media.
Adam Rippon (born November 11, 1989) is an American figure skater. He is the 2010 Four Continents champion and 2016 U.S. national champion. Earlier in his career, he won the 2008 and 2009 World Junior Championships, the 2007–08 Junior Grand Prix Final, and the 2008 U.S junior national title. Rippon was selected to represent USA at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. This makes him the first openly gay American athlete to qualify for any Winter Olympics.
Australia removes its restrictions on gays and lesbians serving in the military.
The Philipine Commission on Elections does not let Ang Ladlad, the Filiponi LGBT political party, run in the May 20101 elections on the grounds of immorality. The decision is overturned in Ariul, 2010. Ladlad was founded on September 21, 2003 by Danton Remoto (born March 25, 1963). The party’s official motto is Bukas puso, bukas isip (Open heart, open mind.)
New South Wales legislative council passes a motion marking Inter-sex Awareness Day. Intersex Awareness Day is an internationally observed awareness day designed to highlight human rights issues faced by intersex people.
Lisabetha Olsdotter is convicted of abandoning her husband and children, becoming a soldier, and marrying a woman. She is accused of “mutilating” her gender and mocking God. She is executed by decapitation.
Eric Marcus (born November 12, 1958) is born. He is an American non-fiction writer. His works are primarily of LGBT interest, including Breaking the Surface, the autobiography of gay Olympic diving champion Greg Louganis, which became a #1 New York Times Bestseller and Making History: The Struggle for Gay and Lesbian Equal Rights, 1945–1990 which won the Stonewall Book Award. Other topics he’s addressed in his writing include suicide and pessimistic humor. Marcus received his B.A. from Vassar College in 1980 where he majored in Urban Studies. He earned his master’s degree from Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in 1984 and a master’s degree in real estate development in 2003, also from Columbia University. He was an associate producer for Good Morning America and CBS Morning News. Marcus served on the Board and staff of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (ASFP), as National Board Member (2010 – 2014), Chair of the Loss & Bereavement Council (2011 – 2014) and Senior Director for Loss and Bereavement Programs from 2014 to 2015.
The first depiction of a same-sex relationship is found in an Egyptian tomb. Nyankh-khnum and Khnum-hotep are discovered buried together side by side. The wall art shows the two men kissing. They were ancient Egyptian royal servants. They shared the title of Overseer of the Manicurists in the Palace of King Nyuserre Ini, sixth pharaoh of the Fifth Dynasty, reigning during the second half of the 25th century BC. They were buried together at Saqqara and are listed as “royal confidants” in their joint tomb.
Fallout from Time magazine’s October 31st cover story “The Ho-mosexual: Newly Visible, Newly Understood” results in a protest at New York’s Time-Life Building.
Céline Sciamma (born 12 November 1978) is a French screenwriter and film director. Sciamma’s work is strikingly minimalist, partly the legacy of her mentor, Xavier Beauvois, who advised her while she was a student at the major French film school La Fémis. While highly formalist and idiosyncratic (notably in her lack of dialogue and very stylized mise-en-scene), Sciamma’s filmmaking, beginning with Water Lilies relates closely to the characteristics of first-time filmmaking in France, notably in its emphasis on coming-of-age films focused on adolescents or pre-adolescents. Sciamma is very interested, moreover, in the fluidity of gender and sexual identity among girls during this formative period. In 2014, Sciamma was in a relationship with the actress Adele Haenel whom she met on the set of Water Lilies. Haenel publicly acknowledged their relationship in her acceptance speech for her César award in 2014. Their relationship continued as of 2017. Sciamma’s fourth feature film, Portrait of a Lady on Fire, began shooting in autumn 2018. It premiered In Competition at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival where it won the Queer Palm and Best Screenplay.
Gay Community Services, Inc. receives its trade name from the State of Arizona.
Protests in Bogota take place after the Columbian court rules against same-sex marriage.
St. Augustine (13 November 354 – 28 August 430) is born in Tagaste, North Africa. He was an early North African Christian theologian and philosopher whose writings influenced the development of Western Christianity and Western philosophy. He was the bishop of Hippo Regius in north Africa and is viewed as one of the most important Church Fathers in Western Christianity for his writings in the Patristic Era. In his writing he discusses his love for his closest friend saying he contemplated joining him in death. “I felt that his soul and mine were one soul in two bodies.”
Top level members of the Third Reich advise the Head of Police to transport homosexuals to the concentration camp Fuhlsbuttel near Hamburg. The Third Reich had recently established homosexuals as a category of prisoners.
San Francisco swore in its first openly gay and lesbian police officers.
1985, U. K.
Manchester gay rights advocate and politician Margaret Roff (1943-1987) becomes the country’s first openly lesbian (or gay) mayor. A few months after retiring from the Council, in October 1987, Roff died in a hotel fire in Puerta Cabezas when she had been part of a women’s delegation to Nicaragua.
A federal court rules that the Armstrong amendment which would have cut off Washington D.C.’s entire 1989 budget unless the city council exempted religious educational institutions from the gay rights provisions of the city’s human rights law, was unconstitu-tional. William Armstrong introduced the measure after the D.C. Court of Appeals ruled that Georgetown University was not exempt from the gay rights law and ordered the University to provide facilities to gay and lesbian student organizations that are equal to those provided to other student groups.
Audre Lorde (February 18, 1934 – November 17, 1992), the influential African American lesbian poet, becomes the New York State Poet Laureate. She receives the Walt Whitman Citation of Merit from Gov. Mario Cuomo, Sr., making her the Poet Laurette of New York State from 1991-1993. Her impassioned and political acceptance speech receives a standing ovation.
1995, New Zealand
A group of lesbians protested an appearance by Zimbabwe president Robert Mugabe at a meeting of Commonwealth heads of government in Auckland. He had told a group of journalists that homosexuals are trying to destroy society.
Young Jane Cummings makes an accusation of “inordinate affec-tion” between two female teachers Marianne Woods, 27, and Jane Pirie, 26, in Edinburgh. This is the first of a series of events leading to a dramatic trial and which later became the basis for the Broad-way play and film The Children’s Hour in 1934 by Lillian Hellman.
Adolf Brand (14 November 1874 – 2 February 1945) was a German writer, individualist anarchist, and pioneering campaigner for the acceptance of male bisexuality and homosexuality. On this day Brand published Der Eigene, the first gay journal in the world, published from 1896 to 1932 in Berlin. Other contributors included writers Benedict Friedlaender, Hanns Heinz Ewers, Erich Mühsam, Kurt Hiller, Ernst Burchard, John Henry Mackay, Theodor Lessing, Klaus Mann, and Thomas Mann, as well as artists Wilhelm von Gloeden, Fidus, and Sascha Schneider. The journal may have had an average of 1500 subscribers per issue during its run, but the exact numbers are uncertain. In 1933, when Adolf Hitler rose to power, Adolf Brand’s house was searched and all the materials needed to produce the magazine were seized and given to Ernst Röhm.
Joseph McCarthy (November 14, 1908 – May 2, 1957), the U.S. Senator who presided over a Communist witch-hunt during the 1950s, was born in Appleton, Wisconsin. The red-baiting homophobe was actually a closeted gay man. In an article in the Las Vegas Sun on October 25, 1952, Hank Greenspun wrote that: “It is common talk among homosexuals in Milwaukee who rendezvous in the White Horse Inn that Senator Joe McCarthy has often engaged in homosexual activities.” The number of American lives destroyed in the 1950s by McCarthy’s “outing Communists” and witch hunts of homosexuals numbered in the tens of thousands in the U.S. McCarthy died of alcoholism at the age of 48. His right-hand man, lawyer (and also closeted gay man and friend of Donald Trump) Roy Cohn (February 20, 1927 – August 2, 1986) died of AIDS in 1986.
Lillias Irma Valerie Arkell-Smith (1895–1960), going by the name Sir Victor Barker, serves in the Royal Air Force. Arkell-Smith was physically and legally female. In 1926 while living in London, he accidentally received a letter inviting him to join the National Fascisti which had been addressed to a different Colonel Barker. Arkell-Smith replied to the misdirected letter with the missive “why not,” reasoning that membership of what was a macho group would help him pose as a man. Arkell-Smith died in poverty and obscurity under the name Geoffrey Norton, in 1960 and was buried in an unmarked grave in Kessingland churchyard, near Lowestoft, Suffolk. The story of the many lives of Arkell-Smith/Barker is told in Colonel Barker’s Monstrous Regiment by Rose Collis, Virago 2001.
The Nazi SS (storm troops) informs concentration camp comman-dants that they are free to sterilize any of the prisoners under their control. The directive gives official approval to the practice, already instituted in some camps, of castrating males suspected of sexual attraction to other men.
In New York City, the Gay Liberation Front launches the premiere issue of the first gay newspaper Come Out! It ran for three years.
China determines that same-sex acts are no longer to be considered a “social order” offense.
Fifty-two men are arrested on May 11, 2001, on the Queen Boat, a floating gay nightclub on the Nile River. According to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), the men were subjected to beatings and forensic examinations to “prove their homosexuality.” The trials of the “Cairo 52” lasted five months and the defendants were vilified in the Egyptian media, which printed their real names and addresses, and branded them as agents against the State. On November 14, 2001, twenty-one of the men were convicted of the “habitual practice of debauchery,” one man of “contempt for religion,” and another, accused of being the “ringleader” was convicted of both charges and received the heaviest sentence, five years’ hard labor. A fifty-third man, a teenager, was tried in juvenile court and was sentenced to the maximum penalty of three years in prison, to be followed by three years of probation.
Transgender woman Lateisha Green is shot and killed outside a house party in Syracuse, NY. Her murderer is sentenced to 25 years for first degree manslaughter. This is the first transgender hate crimes conviction in NY and only the second in the US.
A set of laws was enacted for the Plymouth colony (present-day Massachusetts). Eight offences including sodomy were deemed punishable by death.
Bisexual artist Georgia O’Keefe (November 15, 1887 – March 6, 1986) is born. She was best known for her paintings of enlarged flowers, New York skyscrapers, and New Mexico landscapes. O’Keeffe has been recognized as the “Mother of American modernism.”
1940, South Africa
Patricia Marion Fogarty (Nov. 15, 1940-Feb. 17, 1999), illustrator and photographer and lover of filmmaker Jayne Parker, is born. Her drawings and watercolors appeared regularly in newspapers, magazines, books, and in national advertising campaigns, in every size and context, from billboards to brochures to ginger-beer labels.
Hitler orders the death penalty for homosexual SS officers. Hein-rich Himmler announced the decree that any member of the Nazi SS or police who had sex with another man would be put to death.
In Los Angeles, W. Dorr Legg, Tony Reyes, Martin Block, Dale Jennings, Merton Bird, Don Slater, and Chuck Rowland, all with ties to the Mattachine Society, form a group to promote education and research activities beneficial to gay men and lesbians. ONE, Inc., results from the meeting. The name is from an aphorism of Victorian writer Thom Carlyle: “A mystic bond of brotherhood makes all men one.”
The Washington, D.C. chapter of the Mattachine Society is formed by activists Jack Nichols (March 16, 1938 – May 2, 2005) and Frank Kameny (May 21, 1925 – October 11, 2011) who is elected president. Kameny was an American rights activist. He has been referred to as “one of the most significant figures” in the American gay rights movement.
Representatives of the Gay Liberation Front join hundreds of thousands of other demonstrators protesting the Viet Nam War in Washington, D.C.
Jet Magazine features a lesbian couple, Edna Knowles and Peaches Stevens, in their publication under the headline “Two Women ‘Married’ In Chicago — To Each Other.” However, Jet noted that the Illinois marriage license bureau had no record of the union. The image caption refers to Stevens as the “bridegroom.”
Dr. Howard Brown announces the founding of the National Gay (“and lesbian” was added later) Task Force, considered the first gay/lesbian rights organization with a truly national scope. Dr. Bruce Voeller (May 12, 1934 – February 13, 1994) is named the first executive director.
The school board of Santa Barbara, California, votes to ban discrimination against students based on sexual orientation.
Margaret Mead (December 16, 1901 – November 15, 1978) dies at age 76. Mead, who was bisexual, was perhaps the most famous anthropologist in the world at the time of her death. She helped the world to understand that gender roles differed from culture to culture. She once said, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Mead never openly identified herself as lesbian or bisexual. In her writings she proposed that it is to be expected that an individual’s sexual orientation may evolve throughout life.
Michael Harcourt, an alderman consistently supportive of the gay community, is elected mayor of Vancouver. An organization called Gay People to Elect Mike Harcourt campaigned actively in the gay community. Harcourt would become NDP premier of British Columbia in 1991.
A Washington, D.C. Superior Court judge dismisses a lawsuit brought by gay students against Georgetown University three years prior, ruling that the students cannot force the university to grant their organization recognition, because the federal government does not have an official national policy on homosexual rights.
And the Band Played On, Randy Shilts’ (August 8, 1951 – February 17, 1994) remarkable book about AIDS and AIDS research, debuts at number twelve on the New York Times best seller list.
Alexandria, Virginia bans discrimination in employment, housing and other practices based on sexual orientation.
Massachusetts becomes the second U.S. state to pass a statewide gay rights law.
Thirty-five members of The Cathedral Project, a gay Roman Catholic group, demonstrate in New York City at St. Patrick’s Cathedral to protest a Vatican directive urging bishops to oppose laws banning anti-gay bias.
The Florida Baptist state convention approves a resolution to encourage members to boycott the Walt Disney Co. because of the company’s extension of domestic partner benefits to its gay and lesbian employees.
Jim Kepner, Jr. (1923 – 15 November 1997) dies. He was a journalist, author, historian, archivist and leader in the gay rights movement. His work was intertwined with One, Inc. and One magazine. He contributed to the formation of the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives.
The Washington Times claims George W. Bush ensured conserva-tive supporters that he would not knowingly appoint any homosexuals as ambassadors or department heads in his administration if elected president.
Comedian Wanda Sykes (born March 7, 1964) comes out at a rally in Las Vegas for marriage equality. She said, “I’m proud to be a woman, proud to be Black, and proud to be gay…” Sykes is an American actress, comedian, and writer. She was first recognized for her work as a writer on The Chris Rock Show, for which she won a Prime-time Emmy Award in 1999. In 2004, Weekly named Sykes as one of the 25 funniest people in America. A month earlier, Sykes had married her partner Alex Niedbalski, a French woman, whom she had met in 2006. The couple became parents on April 27, 2009, when Alex gave birth to twins.
Sandro Botticelli (c. 1445 – May 17, 1510) is accused of sodomy but the charges were dropped. Botticelli was an Italian painter of the Early Renaissance. He belonged to the Florentine School under the patronage of Lorenzo de’ Medici. Botticelli’s posthumous reputation suffered until the late 19th century; since then, his work has been seen to represent the linear grace of Early Renaissance painting.
The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall (12 August 1880 – 7 October 1943) is declared obscene. Hall is best known for this groundbreaking work in lesbian literature.
Randy Wicker (born February 3, 1938) is a guest on The Les Crane Show, becoming the first openly gay person to appear on national television. Following the show, Wicker is barraged by hundreds of letters from isolated lesbians and gay men across the country. He is an American author, activist and blogger. After involvement in the early homophile and gay liberation movements, Wicker became active around the issue of human cloning.
The London Gay Liberation Front attends a demonstration in support of the National Union of Students.
Bruce Voeller (May 12, 1934 – February 13, 1994), chair of the Gay Activist Alliance State and Federal Affairs Committee, questions Sen. Ted Kennedy. Kennedy said he would support efforts to end policies which deny homosexuals the right to work gainfully in their professions.
Martin Sherman’s (born December 22, 1938) play Bent, about the Nazi persecution of homosexuals starring Richard Gere and David Dukes, begins previews on Broadway. Sherman is an American dramatist and screenwriter best known for his 20 stage plays which have been produced in over 55 countries. He rose to fame in 1979 with the production of his Pulitzer Prize winning Bent.
The West German government announces it will attempt to pass legislation making it a crime for a person with AIDS to have sex.
The Center for Homosexual Lifestyles was established in Berlin. It was the first time in Germany that a public office was established specifically to deal with the concerns of lesbians and gay men. Called the Referat fur Gleichgeschlectliche Lebensweisen (Center for Homosexual Lifestyles), the state-level office works to eliminate discrimination and promote understanding of gay men and lesbians.
A directive was issued by the Canadian Government allowing workers in same-sex relationships to take time off in the event of a partner’s illness or death.
Thomas Hannah, Jr., a private in Company G of the 95th Illinois Regiment, writes that one of the soldiers in his regiment was found to be a female. He was referring to Albert Cashier (December 25, 1843 – October 10, 1915), a female-bodied Civil War soldier who had lived as a man. Albert D. J. Cashier, born Jennie Irene Hodgers, was an Irish-born female immigrant who served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. Cashier adopted the identity of a man before enlisting and maintained it for most of the remainder of his life. He became famous as one of a number of female-born soldiers who served as men during the Civil War, although the consistent and long-term commitment to the male identity has prompted some contemporary scholars to suggest that Cashier was a trans man.
Mary Harriman Rumsey (November 17, 1881 – December 18, 1934) was the founder of the Junior League for the Promotion of Settlement Movements, later known as the Junior League of the City of New York of the Association of Junior Leagues International Inc. Mary was the daughter of railroad magnate E. H. Harriman and sister to W. Averell Harriman, former New York State Governor and United States Diplomat. In 2015 she was posthumously inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame. She was the partner of Roosevelt’s Secretary of Labor, Frances Perkins (April 10, 1880 – May 14, 1965).
The New York Times publishes a report on the “Cleveland Street Scandal,” a case involving a house of male prostitutes and members of British nobility. The Cleveland Street scandal occurred in 1889 when a homosexual male brothel in Cleveland Street, Fitzrovia, London, was discovered by police. The government was accused of covering up the scandal to protect the names of aristocratic and other prominent patrons. At the time, sexual acts between men were illegal in Britain, and the brothel’s clients faced possible prosecution and certain social ostracism if discovered. It was rumored that Prince Albert Victor, the eldest son of the Prince of Wales and second-in-line to the British throne had visited though this has never been substantiated. Unlike overseas newspapers, the English press never named the Prince but the allegation influenced the handling of the case by the authorities and has colored biographers’ perceptions of him since. After Henry James FitzRoy, Earl of Euston, was named in the press as a client, he successfully sued for libel. The scandal fueled the attitude that male homosexuality was an aristocratic vice that corrupted lower-class youths. Such perceptions were still prevalent in 1895 when the Marquess of Queensberry accused Oscar Wilde of being an active homosexual.
Rock Hudson (born Roy Harold Scherer Jr.; November 17, 1925 – October 2, 1985), is born. He was an American actor generally known for his turns as a leading man during the 1950s and 1960s. Viewed as a prominent ‘heartthrob’ of the Hollywood Golden Age, he achieved stardom with roles in films such as Magnificent Obsession (1954), All That Heaven Allows (1955) and Giant (1956), and found continued success with a string of romantic comedies co-starring Doris Day in Pillow Talk (1959), Lover Come Back (1961) and Send Me No Flowers (1964). After appearing in films including Seconds(1966), Tobruk (1967) and Ice Station Zebra (1968) during the late 1960s, Hudson began a second career in television through the 1970s and 1980s, starring in the popular mystery series McMillan & Wife and the opera Dynasty. While his career developed, Hudson and his agent Henry Willson kept the actor’s person-al life out of the headlines. In 1955, Confidential magazine threatened to publish an exposé about Hudson’s secret homosexual life. Willson stalled this by disclosing information about two of his other clients. Willson provided information about Rory Calhoun’s years in prison and the arrest of Tab Hunter (born July 11, 1931) at a party in 1950. According to some colleagues, Hudson’s homosexual activity was well known in Hollywood throughout his career, and former co-stars Elizabeth Taylor and James claimed that they knew of his homosexuality, as did Carol Burnett. Unknown to the public, Hudson was diagnosed with HIV on June 5, 1984, just three years after the existence of HIV and AIDS had been discovered by scientists. On July 25, 1985, Hudson’s French publicist Yanou Collart confirmed that Hudson did in fact have AIDS. He was among the first notable individuals to have been diagnosed with the disease. On October 2, 1985, Hudson died in his sleep from AIDS-related complications at his home in Beverly Hills at age 59.
The New York Times reports that a London judge found the lesbian novel The Well of Loneliness obscene and ordered all seized copies of it destroyed.
RuPaul (born November 17, 1960) is born. RuPaul Andre Charles is an American actor/host, drag queen, television personality, and singer/songwriter. Since 2009, he has produced and hosted the reality competition series RuPaul’s Drag Race for which he received two Awards in 2016 and 2017. He has described doing drag as a “very, very political” act because it “challenges the status quo” by rejecting fixed identities: “drag says ‘I’m a shapeshifter, I do whatever the hell I want at any given time.’ RuPaul has been with his Australian partner Georges LeBar since 1994, when they met at the Limelight nightclub in New York City. They married in January 2017. LeBar is a painter and runs a 50,000-acre ranch in Wyoming. In 2017, RuPaul was included in the annual Time 100 list of the most influential people in the world.
A group of sex researchers looking for physical differences be-tween homosexual and heterosexual men announce erroneous findings that heterosexuals have 40% more testosterone in their blood than homosexuals do.
The New Yorker publishes its first gay-themed short “Minor Hero-ism” by Allan Gurganus.
Vancouver Sun reverses course and accepts an ad from Gay Tide after a five-year court battle. The Supreme Court of Canada ruled Sun had “reasonable cause” to refuse advertising. The first ad was submitted to the Sun on October 23, 1974.
In New York City, more than 700 people concerned about negative publicity surrounding AIDS, bathhouses, and gay promiscuity attend a town meeting that leads to the founding of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD). Formed in New York City in 1985 to protest against what it saw as the New York Post’s defamatory and sensationalized AIDS coverage, GLAAD put pressure on media organizations to end what it saw as homophobic reporting. Initial meetings were held in the homes of several New York City activists as well as after-hours at the New York State Council on the Arts. The founding group included film scholar Vito Russo (July 11, 1946 – November 7, 1990), Gregory Kolovakos (July 30, 1951 – April 16, 1990), then on the staff of the New York State Arts Council and who later became the first executive director; Darryl Yates Rist (1948-1993), Allen Barnett (May 23, 1955 – August 14, 1991), and Jewelle Gomez (born September 11, 1948), the organization’s first treasurer. Some members of GLAAD went on to become the early members of ACT UP.
The first National Gay and Lesbian Task Force Creating Change conference was held in Washington D.C.
OutRage, a London direct-action group, stages a zap against the Living Waters ex-gay movement at St Michael’s Church in Belgravia.
Audre Lorde (February 18, 1934 – November 17, 1992) dies. She was a writer, feminist, womanist, librarian, and civil rights activist. As a poet, she is best known for technical mastery and emotional expression, as well as her poems that express anger and outrage at civil and social injustices she observed throughout her life. Her poems and prose largely deal with issues related to civil rights, feminism, and the exploration of black female identity. Audre Lorde was a lesbian and navigated spaces interlocking her womanhood, gayness and blackness in ways that trumped white feminism, predominately white gay spaces and toxic black male masculinity. Audre Lorde used those identities within her work and ultimately it guided her to create pieces that embodied lesbianism in a light that educated people of many social classes and identities on the issues black lesbian women face in society. From 1991 until her death, she was the New York State Poet Laureate. Lorde died of liver cancer on November 17, 1992, in St. Croix, where she had been living with Gloria I. Joseph. She was 58. In an African naming ceremony before her death, she took the name Gamba Adisa which means “Warrior: She Who Makes Her Meaning Known.”
James Woods III (1963-1995), co-author of The Corporate Closet: The Professional Lives of Gay Men in America, dies of complications from AIDS at age 32. Woods graduated from Harvard College and the Annenberg School for Communications at the University of Pennsylvania. He was an assistant professor of communications at Staten Island and at the CUNY Graduate Center in Manhattan. He is survived by his partner, Paul D. Young.
The National Black Lesbian and Gay Leadership Forum issues a press release applauding singer Janet Jackson for her use of sexual orientation themes in her album The Velvet Rope.
Patria Jimenez (born Elsa Patria Jiménez Flores, 1957) is the first openly gay person elected to a Latin American congress. She is a Mexican politician and head of Clóset de Sor Juana (Sister Juana’s Closet). Openly lesbian, she became the first gay member of Mexico’s legislature in the country’s history—the first in any legislature in Latin America. Jiménez is the longtime head of Sister Juana’s Closet, a lesbian rights group named after Juana Inés de la Cruz, a Carmelite nun and renowned Mexican poet. It is a United Nations accredited Non-Governmental Organization (NGO).
Methodist minister Jimmy Creech was stripped of his clerical status for presiding over a same-sex holy union.
The Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts rules that the state cannot bar same-sex couples from marrying and gives the legislature until June to rewrite the laws.
Transgender Phyllis Frye (born 1946) is appointed an associate judge for the City of Houston. She is the first openly transgender judge appointed in the United States. Frye graduated from Texas A&M University with a B.S. in Civil Engineering and an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering. While at Texas A&M, Frye was a member of the University’s Corps of Cadets, belonged to the Texas A&M Singing Cadets and got married. She was honorably discharged from the United States Army in 1972. She transitioned in 1976. On April 28, 2013, Frye was presented with the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Transgender Foundation of America.
Nikki Sinclair (born 26 July 1968) comes out as the first transgender member of the European Parliament. She is a British politician and former leader of the We Demand a Referendum Party who served as a Member of the European Parliament for the West Midlands from 2009 to 2014.
Claudio Arriagada (Oct. 22, 1955), the mayor of La Granja, Santiago Province, is elected to the Chilean chamber of Deputies after coming out as gay. He is the first openly gay person elected to Congress in Chilean history.
The U.S. Congress launches the Transgender Equality Task Force to address issues affecting transgender and gender non-conforming people.
Police raid a gay dance club. Of the 41 attendees, 29 men are dressed in women’s clothing and all are members of the highest classes of society. Punishment was conscription into the army. As a result of the Dance of the Forty-One Raid, the number 41 is adopted into Mexican popular culture as reference to homosexuality. No segment of the army is allowed to be given the unit number 41.
Gay McGill holds the first of what were to become the most suc-cessful community dances in Montreal. They ended in May 1975 because of the withdrawal of liquor license by Quebec liquor board.
Psychologist Dr. Evelyn Hooker (September 2, 1907 – November 18, 1996) dies. Her research at UCLA provided some of the earliest evidence that homosexuality is not a psychological disease.
Section 28 or Clause 28 of the Local Government Act 1988 caused the addition of Section 2A to the Local Government Act 1986, which affected England, Wales and Scotland. The amendment was enacted on May 24, 1988 and stated that a local authority “shall not intentionally promote homosexuality or publish material with the intention of promoting homosexuality” or “promote the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship.” The law was repealed on this day in 2003.
The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court rules that the state’s constitution guarantees equal marriage rights for same-sex couples (Goodridge v. Department of Public Health). The November 18, 2003 decision was the first by a U.S. state’s highest court to find that same-sex couples had the right to marry and sparked a national wildfire of civil disobedience (the issuing of marriage licenses authorized by mayors and city councils in San Francisco, CA; Portland, OR; New Paltz, NY and Sandoval County, N.M.) and dozens of lawsuits in those and many other jurisdictions.
Christa Winsloe’s (23 December 1888 – 10 June 1944) book The Child Manuela is reviewed in the New York Times. It was a translation from a German book about a lesbian relationship in a school for girls. The reviewer referred to it as “a social document that is moving and eloquent.” Winsloe was a 20th-century German-Hungarian novelist, playwright and sculptor. Winsloe wrote Das Mädchen Manuela (The Child Manuela), a short novel based on her experiences at Kaiserin-Augusta. Winsloe was involved in a relationship with newspaper reporter Dorothy Thompson, probably before World War II when Thompson was reporting from Berlin. She moved to France in the late 1930s, fleeing the Nazis. During World War II, she joined the French Resistance. Contrary to what is often stated, she was not executed by the Nazis. Instead, on June 10, 1944, Winsloe and her French partner, Simone Gentet, were shot and killed by four Frenchmen in a forest near the country town of Cluny. The men said that they had thought the women were Nazi spies and later acquitted of murder.
Canadian immigration authorities allowed the Irish lover of a Canadian citizen to immigrate legally. This was the first time in North America that a same-sex relationship was used as the basis for immigration.
Political activist Jim Foster (November 19, 1934– October 31, 1990) is born. He founded the Alice B. Toklas Democratic Club in 1972, the country’s first gay Democratic political club. Foster co-founded the Society for Individual Rights (SIR), an early homophile organization, in 1964. In 1971, Foster, along with Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon, transformed the SIR Political Action Committee into the Alice B. Toklas Memorial Democratic Club. The first U.S. gay community center opens, in San Francisco, led by The Society for Individual Rights.
Bisexual Clothing designer Calvin Klein (November 19, 1942) is born.
Marilyn Barnett files a palimony suit against Billie Jean King (November 22, 1943) but it’s thrown out of court. in 1971, King began an intimate relationship with her secretary, Marilyn Barnett (born January 28, 1948). King acknowledged the relationship when it be-came public in a May 1981 ‘palimony’ lawsuit filed by Barnett, making King the first prominent professional female athlete to come out as a lesbian. Feeling she could not admit to the extent of the relationship, King publicly called it a fling and a mistake. She was still married to her husband Larry. The lawsuit caused King to lose an estimated $2 million in endorsements and forced her to prolong her tennis career to pay attorneys. Billie Jean and Larry remained married through the palimony suit fallout. The marriage ended in 1987 after Billie Jean fell in love with her doubles partner, Ilana Kloss.
Marius Aitai, Ovidiu Chetea and Cosmin Hutanu are sentenced to up to two and a half years in prison for same-sex acts in private. Amnesty International calls for their immediate release and protests the imprisonment of 54 other people on similar charges, as well as the reportedly widespread torture and sexual abuse of persons ar-rested on suspicion of homosexuality.
In Spanish Fork, Utah, during a meeting of the Nebo County Board of Education, supporters of lesbian teacher Wendy Weaver and those demanding her resignation presented their cases. A month earlier Weaver was dismissed from her position as volleyball coach and ordered not to discuss her sexual orientation with anyone, in or out of school.
The New York Court of Appeals rules that state officials have the authority to recognize out-of-state same-sex marriages although the court declines to rule on whether same-sex couples may legally marry in the New York.
The Transgender Pride flag flies from the Castro, San Francisco flag pole for the first time. The flag was created by Monica Helms in 1999 and first shown at the Phoenix, AZ, pride parade in 2000. Helms is a transgender activist, author, and veteran of the United States Navy.
Transgender Day of Remembrance
Grace Darmond (November 20, 1893 – October 8, 1963) was a Canadian-born American actress from the early 20th century. Although performing in a substantial number of films over roughly 13 years, she was known in Hollywood’s inner circle as the lesbian lover to actress Jean Acker, the first wife of actor Rudolph Valentino. She was also associated, as many struggling actresses of the day were, with the actress Alla Nazimova, who was the former lover to Acker, although it has never been verified that Nazimova and Darmond were ever linked romantically.
Anna Pauline “Pauli” Murray (November 20, 1910 – July 1, 1985) is born. She was an American civil rights activist, women’s rights activist, lawyer, Episcopal priest, and author. Drawn to the ministry, in 1977 Murray became the first Black woman to be ordained as an Episcopal priest and was among the first group of women to become priests in that church. In 1940, Murray sat in the whites-only section of a Virginia bus with a friend, and they were arrested for violating state segregation laws. This incident, and her subsequent involvement with the socialist Workers’ Defense League, led her to pursue her career goal of working as a civil rights lawyer. As a lawyer, Murray argued for civil rights and women’s rights. National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) Chief Counsel Thurgood Marshall called Murray’s 1950 book States’ Laws on Race and Color the “bible” of the civil rights movement. In 1966 she was a co-founder of the National Organization for Women. Murray struggled in her adult life with issues related to her sexual and gender identity, describing herself as having an “inverted sex instinct.” She described herself as having an “inverted sex instinct” that caused her to behave as a man attracted to women would. She wanted a “monogamous married life”, but one in which she was the man. She had a brief, annulled marriage to a man and several deep relationships with women. In her younger years, she occasionally had passed as a teenage boy. In addition to her legal and advocacy work, Murray published two well-reviewed autobiographies and a volume of poetry. On July 1, 1985, the Rev. Dr. Pauli Murray died of pancreatic cancer in the house she owned with a lifelong friend, Maida Springer Kemp, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. In 2012 the General Convention of the Episcopal Church voted to honor Murray as one of its Holy Women, Holy Men, to be commemorated on July 1, the anniversary of her death, along with fellow writer Harriet Beecher Stowe. In December, 2016, the Pauli Murray Family Home was named as a National Historic Landmark.
Kaye Ballard (November 20, 1925 – January 21, 2019) was an American musical theatre and television actress, comedian and singer. She starred on the 1960s sitcom The Mothers-in-Law and was also a popular Broadway and nightclub performer. Ballard played a meddling mother-in-law alongside Eve Arden as they get too involved in their children’s marriage on the sitcom that ran on NBC from 1967 until 1969. Ballard was a singer who was the first to record Fly Me to the Moon, and she starred in many Broadway musicals including The Golden Apple. Ballard died at her home in Rancho Mirage, California on January 21, 2019, at the age of 93. She was married to actor and bisexual Brooks West.
The Children’s Hour, a play by Lillian Hellman in which two school teachers are accused of having a lesbian relationship, opens on Broadway to rave reviews and sellout audiences. A largely sympathetic account of two schoolteachers accused of lesbianism by one of their students, the play is loosely based on an actual case in 19th-century Scotland.
Members of the Austin Lesbian Organization and Gay Community Services picketed the Austin-American Statesman for refusing to run ads for gay organizations and running housing and employment ads which specified “no gays.” The paper agreed the next month not to print ads which stated “no gays,” and began printing ads from gay and lesbian organizations the following April when the Austin City Council passed a Public Accommodations Ordinance which outlawed discrimination based on sexual orientation.
Steven Powsner (November 19, 1955 – November 20, 1995), who had been president of the New York City Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center from 1992-1994, dies of complications from AIDS at the age of 40. His first lover, Bruce Philip Cooper, died of AIDS in 1987.
The Ashland Wisconsin school district agrees to pay former student Jamie Nabozny $900,000 in damages. While he was a student, administrators took no action to alleviate the physical and verbal abuse he suffered because he was gay. The nearly one-million-dollar settlement makes Jamie the first of a long string of students to successfully sue schools and school employees for failing to protect them from horrendous homophobic abuse. Nabozny v. Podlesny, 92 F.3d 446 (7th Cir. 1996)was a case heard in the Circuit regarding the protection of a school student in Ashland, Wisconsin, who had been harassed and bullied by classmates because of his sexual orientation. The plaintiff in the case, Jamie Nabozny, sought damages from school officials for their failure to protect him from the bullying. A jury found that this failure violated Nabozny’s constitutional rights and awarded him $962,000 in damages.
John Geddes Lawrence and Tyrone Garner of Texas are ordered to pay fines of $125 each after being arrested for having sex in their home. The couple refuse to pay and announce they would challenge the Texas sodomy law. Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U.S. 558 (2003) is a landmark decision by the United States Supreme Court. The Court struck down the sodomy law in Texas in a 6–3 decision and, by extension, invalidated sodomy laws in 13 other states, making same-sex sexual activity legal in every U.S. state and territory. The Court, with a five-justice majority, overturned its previous ruling on the same issue in the 1986 case Bowers v. Hardwick, where it upheld a challenged Georgia statute and did not find a constitutional protection of sexual privacy.
Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) was started in 1999 by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. The vigil commemorated all the transgender people lost to violence since Rita Hester’s death, and began an important tradition that has become the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance.
The U.S. Congress passes a resolution condemning all violations of internationally recognized human rights norms based on the real or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of an individual.
Transgender Japanese singer Alaru Nakamura’s (born 28 June 1985) album Boy-Girl wins the Excellent Album music award at the 56th Japan Record Awards ceremony. Nakamura was assigned male at birth but transitioned after struggling with issues of gender identity.
Transgender pioneer Jan Morris (2 October 1926 – 20 November 2020) died at her home in Wales. She was 94. She was a Welsh historian, author and travel writer known particularly for the Pax Britannica trilogy (1968–1978). She published under her birth name, James, until 1972 when she had gender reassignment surgery after transitioning from male to female. Morris, then James Morris, married Elizabeth Tuckniss in 1949. They were lifelong partners and had five children. Morris began her transition in 1964. Already a famous journalist, she was one of the first high-profile people to do so. On May 14, 2008, Morris and Tuckniss formally entered into a same-sex civil partnership. Morris later detailed her transition in Conundrum (1974), her first book under her new name, and one of the first autobiographies to discuss gender reassignment. Later memoirs included Herstory and Pleasures of a Tangled Life. She also wrote many essays on travel and her life and published a collection of her diary entries as In My Mind’s Eye in 2019.
Transgender community leader Lauren Pulido raised the transgender pride flag over the California state capitol for Trans Day of Remembrance, reportedly the first time the transgender flag was raised over a state capitol building in the United States.
French diplomat Chevalier d’Eon (5 October 1728 – 21 May 1810) is formally presented to Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette as a woman. Charles-Geneviève-Louis-Auguste-André-Timothée d’Éon de Beaumont was a French diplomat, spy, freemason and soldier who fought in the Seven Years’ War. D’Éon had androgynous physical characteristics and natural abilities as a mimic, good features for a spy. D’Éon appeared publicly as a man and pursued masculine occupations for 49 years, although during that time d’Éon successfully infiltrated the court of Empress Elizabeth of Russia by presenting as a woman. For 33 years, from 1777, d’Éon dressed as a woman, identifying as female. Doctors who examined d’Éon’s body after death discovered “male organs in every respect perfectly formed” but also feminine characteristics.
Cherry Jones (born November 21, 1956) is an American actress. A five-time Tony Award nominee for her work on Broadway, she has twice won the Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for the 1995 revival of The Heiress and for the 2005 original production of Doubt. She has also won three Emmy Awards, winning the Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series in 2009 for her role as Allison Taylor on the FOX television series 24, and twice winning the Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her performances in The Handmaid’s Tale and Succession. She has also won three Drama Desk Awards. Jones made her Broadway debut in the 1987 original Broadway production of Stepping Out. Other stage credits include Pride’s Crossing (1997–98) and The Glass Menagerie (2013–14). Her film appearances include The Horse Whisperer (1998), Erin Brockovich (2000), Signs (2002), The Village (2004), Amelia (2009), and The Beaver (2011). In 2012, she played Dr. Judith Evans on the NBC drama Awake. In 1995, when Jones accepted her first Tony Award, she thanked her then-partner, architect Mary O’Connor with whom she had an 18-year relationship. She started dating actress Sarah Paulson in 2004. When she accepted her Best Actress Tony in 2005 for her work in Doubt, she thanked Laura Wingfield, the Glass Menagerie character being played in the Broadway revival by Paulson. In 2007, Paulson and Jones declared their love for each other in an interview with Velvet-park at Women’s Event 10 for the LGBT Center of New York. Paulson and Jones ended their relationship amicably in 2009. In mid-2015, Jones married her girlfriend, filmmaker Sophie Huber.
The term ‘gender identity’ is first used in a press release to publicize a new clinic for transsexuals at the Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland. The concept is picked up by the media, and quickly becomes common currency around the world.
Jim Gaylord is fired from his teaching job in Tacoma, WA, via a letter. It read, in part: “The specific probable cause for your discharge is that you have admitted occupying a public status that is incompatible with the conduct required of teachers in this district. Specifically, that you have admitted being a publicly known homo-sexual.” In 2016, 42 years after he lost his job, Gaylord received an apology from the Tacoma School District.
In Toronto, The Body Politic containing an article entitled “Men loving boys loving men” goes on sale. The article by Gerald Hannon sparked a controversy that eventually led to the folding of the paper.
Sergeant Charles H. Cochrane (August 5, 1943–May 5, 2008), a 14-year veteran of the NYPD, created shock waves by testifying before a New York City Council hearing in favor of a gay rights bill. Following on the testimony of a Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association Vice President who denounced the bill and declared he didn’t know of any homosexual police officers, Cochrane stunned those present by announcing, “I am very proud of being a New York City Police Officer, and I am equally proud of being gay.” Cochrane’s public testimony lent significantly toward the official formation of the Gay Officers Action League, Inc., (G.O.A.L.) which became the first official police fraternal society in the world to represent LGBT professionals within the criminal justice system. Since that time, simi-lar organizations for LGBT Law Enforcement Officers, Criminal Justice professionals as well as Firefighters and EMS personnel have been established around the world. Cochrane died of cancer on May 5, 2008 at the age of 64.
Having raided and closed down The Detour bar the night before, Los Angeles police raid and shut down the One Way bar over al-leged violations to the city’s fire ordinance. The LAPD came to the conclusion that the manpower necessary to close the One Way would be ten police cars and several fire trucks and various other city vehicles.
The University of California Board of Regents votes to extend do-mestic partner benefits to partners of lesbian and gay employees.
British writer Quentin Crisp (25 December 1908 – 21 November 1999) dies at age 90. He was an English writer, raconteur and actor. From a conventional suburban background, Crisp enjoyed wearing make-up and painting his nails, and worked as a rent-boy in his teens. He then spent thirty years as a professional model for life-classes in art colleges. The interviews he gave about his unusual life attracted increasing public curiosity and he was soon sought after for his highly individual views on social manners and the cultivating of style. His one-man stage show was a long-running hit both in Britain and America and he also appeared in films and on TV. In 1995 he was among the many people interviewed for The Celluloid Closet, an historical documentary addressing how Hollywood films have depicted homosexuality.
Maryland’s Anti-discrimination Act becomes law. It prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation in public accommodations, housing and employment. Maryland becomes the 12th state to enact such protections for homosexuals.
Israeli Supreme Count recognizes international same-sex marriages.
Jennifer Granholm, governor of Michigan, issues an executive order prohibiting employment discrimination based on gender identity or expression in the public sector.
The Gambian president signs anti-homosexuality law which calls for the imprisonment for people caught in same-sex sexual activity.
French gay author and the 1947 Nobel Prize winner for literature Andre Gide (22 November 1869 – 19 February 1951) is born. He was a French author and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1947 “for his comprehensive and artistically significant writings, in which human problems and conditions have been presented with a fearless love of truth and keen psychological insight.” Gide’s career ranged from its beginnings in the symbolist movement, to the advent of anticolonialism between the two World Wars. In his journal, Gide distinguishes between adult-attracted “sodomites” and boy-loving “pederasts,” categorizing himself as the latter.
British gay composer, conductor and pianist Benjamin Britten (22 November 1913 – 4 December 1976) is born. He was an English composer, conductor and pianist and a central figure of 20th-century British classical music, with a range of works including opera, other vocal music, orchestral and chamber pieces. His best-known works include the opera Peter Grimes(1945), the War Requiem (1962) and the orchestral showpiece The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra (1945).
Mary Alfreda Smith was born (November 22, 1935). Reverend El-der Freda Smith is an American political and LGBT activist, working in the areas of women’s and minority rights. She worked on the Robert F Kennedy election campaign in 1968 and helped overturn laws that criminalized homosexual activity in California. In 1972 she became the first ordained clergywoman of the Metropolitan Community Church.
Former world number one professional tennis player Billie Jean King (November 22, 1943) is born. She won 39 Grand Slam titles: 12 in singles, 16 in women’s doubles, and 11 in mixed doubles. King won the singles title at the inaugural WTA Tour Championships. King often represented the United States in the Federation Cup and the Wightman Cup. She was a member of the victorious United States team in seven Federation Cups and nine Wightman Cups. For three years, King was the United States captain in the Federation Cup. King is an advocate for gender equality and has long been a pioneer for equality and social justice. In 1968, King realized that she was attracted to women, and in 1971, began an intimate relationship with her secretary, Marilyn Barnett (born Marilyn Kathryn McRae on January 28, 1948). King acknowledged the relationship when it became public in a May 1981 ‘palimony’ lawsuit filed by Barnett, making King the first prominent professional female athlete to come out as a lesbian.
Mae West (August 17, 1893 – November 22, 1980) dies in Los Angeles at the age of 88. Rumors that she was really a man were finally proven false. She was an American actress, singer, playwright, screenwriter, comedian, and sex symbol whose entertainment career spanned seven decades.
Lord Peter Mandelson (born 21 October 1953) is the first openly gay Commissioner of the European Union. He is a British Labour politician, president of international think tank Policy Network and Chairman of strategic advisory firm Global Counsel. Reinaldo Avila da Silva (born September 1972, a Brazilian-British translator was his partner from 1998 to 2007 when “Mandy” met Marco Coretti, owner of a chic boutique near the Spanish Steps in Rome.
An independent arbiter rules that Baltimore County, Maryland must extend spousal benefits to the same-sex spouses of two police officers who legally married in another state.
Auli’i Cravalho, the 19-year-old star of Disney’s Moana comes out as bisexual in a video posted to her TikTok account.
Katharine Coman (23 November 1857 –11 January 1915) was an American social activist and professor. She was based at the women-only Wellesley College, Massachusetts where she created new courses in political economy, in line with her personal belief in social change. As dean, she established a new department of eco-nomics and sociology. Among other widely admired works, Coman wrote The Industrial History of the United States and Economic Beginnings of the Far West: How We Won the Land Beyond the Mississippi. She was the first female statistics professor in the U.S., the only woman co-founder of the American Economics Association, and author of the first paper published in The American Economic Review. A passionate believer in trades unionism, social insurance and the settlement movement, Coman travelled widely to conduct her research, and took her students on field trips to factories and tenements. For 25 years, Coman lived in a “Boston marriage” with Wellesley professor and poet Katharine Lee Bates, the author of America the Beautiful. Such partnerships were so common among Wellesley faculty that they were called “Wellesley marriages.” Coman and Bates shared a house they named “the Scarab” with Bates’ mother, Cornelia, and her sister, Jeannie. The women reportedly enjoyed life together as family. Coman frequently traveled for her research on economic history; she visited Europe, the American West, Scandinavia, and Egypt. Bates accompanied her on many of these trips. Some scholars believe the two women were a lesbian couple.
The New York tabloid Broadway Brevities, under the headline “FAGS TICKLE NUDES,” publishes an article warning that “pansy men of the nation” were invading steam baths and turning them into replicas of the orgy houses in Rome at the time of Nero.
Robin René Roberts (born November 23, 1960) is an American television broadcaster and anchor of ABC’s Good Morning America. After growing up in Mississippi and attending Southeastern Louisiana University, Roberts was a sports anchor for local TV and radio stations. Roberts was a sportscaster on ESPN for 15 years (1990–2005). She became co-anchor on Good Morning America in 2005. Roberts was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012. Her treatment for myelodysplastic syndrome was chronicled on the program, which earned a 2012 Peabody Award for the coverage. Roberts began a romantic relationship with massage therapist Amber Laign in 2005. Though friends and co-workers had known about her same-sex relationships, Roberts publicly acknowledged her sexual orientation for the first time in late December 2013. In 2015, she was named by Equality Forum as one of their 31 Icons of the 2015 LGBT History Month.
The word ‘transgenderism’ is first used in a medical text by Dr. John F. Oliven to mean transsexualism. It is given quite a different meaning and popularized by Virginia Prince (November 23, 1912-May 2, 2009) in the 1970s. Prince claims to have invented the word herself and uses it to define people who live full time in their chosen gender without necessarily having had or even wanting to have, gender-confirming surgery.
The first gay and lesbian bookstore opens in New York, the Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookshop. It was founded by Craig Rodwell (October 31, 1940 – June 18, 1993) on November 24, 1967. Initially located at 291 Mercer Street, it moved in 1973 to Christopher Street and Gay Street in New York City’s Greenwich Village neighborhood. The bookstore closed on March 29, 2009, citing the Great Recession and challenges from online bookstores. Also in 1967, Rodwell began the group Homophile Youth Movement in Neighborhoods (HYMN) and began to publish its periodical, HYMNAL. In November 1969, Rodwell proposed the first gay pride parade to be held in New York City by way of a resolution at the Eastern Regional Conference of Homophile Organizations meeting in Philadelphia, along with his partner Fred Sargeant (HYMN vice chairman), Ellen Broidy and Linda Rhodes. The first march was organized from Rodwell’s apartment on Bleecker Street. In March 1993, Rodwell sold his bookshop to Bill Offenbaker. Rodwell died on June 18, 1993 of stomach cancer. Rodwell is considered by some to be quite possibly the leading rights activist in the early homophile movement of the 1960s.
In New York City, 325 people attend the first conference of the Gay Academic Union. The pioneering Lesbian and Gay Studies group, which was founded the previous March, includes Martin Duberman (born August 6, 1930), John D’Emilio (born 1948), Jonathan Ned Katz (born 1938), and Joan Nestle (born May 12, 1940) among its members.
Germany’s sexuality laws, Paragraph 175, stays on the books but is significantly amended. The only remaining crime is sex with a minor.
The New York City Council votes for the tenth time not to pass a gay anti-discrimination ordinance.
A Louisville, Kentucky bank, which fired a branch manager for refusing to end his association with Dignity, an organization for GLBT Catholics, was cleared of charges of discrimination and violating the employee’s freedom of religion.
Prime Minister Paul Keating revokes the country’s restrictions on gay men and lesbians in the military.
Sir Elton John (born 25 March 1947) is honored as the founder of the Elton John AIDS Foundation at a gala celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center. He is an English singer, pianist, and composer. He has worked with lyricist Bernie Taupin as his songwriting partner since 1967. They have collaborated on more than 30 albums to date. In his five-decade career Elton John has sold more than 300 million records, making him one of the best-selling music artists in the world. He established the Elton John AIDS Foundation in 1993 and a year later began hosting the annual Academy Award Party which has since become one of the highest-profile Oscar parties in the Hollywood film industry. Since its inception, the foundation has raised over US$200 million. John, who announced he was bisexual in 1976 and has been openly gay since 1988, entered into a civil partnership with David Furnish on 21 December 2005, and, after same-sex marriage became legal in England and Wales in 2014, wed Furnish on 21 December 2014. On 24 January 2018, it was announced that John would be retiring from touring and would soon embark on a three-year farewell tour, which began in September 2018.
The Georgia Supreme Court votes 6-1 to overturn the state’s sodomy law. In the majority opinion, Chief Justice Robert Benham wrote, “We cannot think of any other activity that reasonable persons would rank as more private and more deserving of protection from governmental interference than consensual, private, adult sexual activity.” Since the decision was based on the Georgia constitution rather than the U.S. constitution, the decision could not be appealed.
The Belize Council of Churches rallies to oppose the decriminalization of homosexual acts at the Belize Action/Family Forum. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) persons in Belize face legal challenges not experienced by non-LGBT citizens. Same-sex sexual activity was illegal in Belize until 2016, when the Supreme Court declared Belize’s anti-sodomy law unconstitutional. Belize also has a law prohibiting foreign homosexuals from entering the country, although the law has never been enforced. Regardless, Belize held its first Pride Week in August 2017.
The world’s first largest same-sex wedding with 160 couples takes place in Rio de Janeiro. It was the fifth time mass same-sex wed-dings were held in Brazil. (The following year 185 couples married.) Claudio Nascimento of Rio Sem Homophobia (Rio without Homophobia) says, “It is an affirmative action to call attention to all of the achievements and challenges in the area of civil and human rights of the LGBT community.” Brazil broke the Guinness World Record for the largest pride parade in 2009 with 4 million attendees. Same-sex marriage has been legal in Brazil since May 16, 2013, though it had already been legally recognized since 2004.
A law was passed in Germany to allow surgical castrations as a crime prevention measure and a therapeutic treatment for homosexuality.
In the wake of the murder of a Sioux City, Iowa, boy earlier in the year, 29 men suspected of homosexuality are committed to mental asylums as a preventive measure authorized by the state’s “sexual psychopath” laws.
The first broadcast of a gay drama called South starring gay actor Peter Wyngarde (August 23, 1933-15 January 2018) is aired. Wyngarde shared a flat in Earls Terrace, Kensington, with actor Alan Bates (17 February 1934 – 27 December 2003) for some years in the 1960s. Bates, (17 February 1934 – 27 December 2003) was a gay English actor known for his performance with Anthony Quinn in Zorba the Greek, as well as his roles in King of Hearts, Georgy Girl, Far from the Madding Crowd and The Fixer in which he received an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor. South, adapted by Gerald Savory from an original play by Julien Green is considered “a milestone” in gay cultural history. Wyngarde’s flamboyant dress sense and stylish performances led to popular success, and he was considered a style icon in Britain and elsewhere in the early 1970s; Mike Myers credited Wyngarde with inspiring the character Austin Powers.
The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force protests an episode of NBC’s Police Woman “Flowers of Evil” (aired on November 8) that featured lesbian murderers in a home for aged women. The network agrees not to rerun the episode, but MCA-TV producer David Gerber keeps it in syndication release.
England’s first national conference on AIDS began, organized by the Terrence Higgins Trust. Terrence “Terry” Higgins (10 June 1945 – 4 July 1982) was among the first people known to die of an AIDS-related illness in the United Kingdom. In his memory, Martyn Butler and Higgins’ partner Rupert Whitaker (born 1963), initiated the formation of the Terry Higgins Trust, later renamed the Terrence Higgins Trust, in 1982 with a group of concerned community members and Terry’s friends including Tony Calvert. It was dedicated to preventing the spread of HIV, promoting awareness of AIDS, and providing supportive services to people with the disease.
At an AIDS candlelight vigil in San Francisco, activist Cleve Jones (born October 11, 1954) conceives The Names Project. Cleve is an American AIDS and LGBT rights activist. The NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt has become, at 54 tons, the world’s largest piece of community folk art. In 1983, at the onset of the AIDS pandemic, Jones co-founded the San Francisco AIDS Foundation which has grown into one of the largest and most influential People with AIDS advocacy organizations in the United States.
Freddie Mercury (5 September 1946 – 24 November 1991), lead singer for Queen, dies of complications from AIDS. It was only the day before that he acknowledged that he had the disease. He left most of his estate to a former girlfriend, Mary Austen, who cared for him during his final months. The official cause of death is bronchial pneumonia resulting from AIDS. He was 45. In 1992, Mercury was posthumously awarded the Brit Award for Outstanding Contribution to British Music, and a tribute concert was held at Wembley Stadium, London. As a member of Queen, he was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001, the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2003, and the Fame in 2004. In 2002, he was placed number 58 in the BBC’s 2002 poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. He is consistently voted one of the greatest singers in the history of popular music. While some commentators claimed Mercury hid his sexual orientation from the public, others claimed he was openly gay.
The Associated Press reports that Edgehill United Methodist Church in Nashville, Tennessee announced that no weddings would be performed until same-sex couples were given the right to be married there.
Nearly 100 people demonstrate to protest the firing of lesbian Alicia Pedreira from Kentucky Baptist Homes for Children in Louisville. According to her termination notice, she was fired because her “admitted homosexual lifestyle is contrary to Kentucky Baptist Homes for Children core values.” Five other employees resigned in protest. The case name is Pedreira v. Kentucky Baptist Homes for Children.
A lower court in Florida declares that the state’s ban on adoption by gay couples is unconstitutional.
The Ecuador LGBT Film Festival Jury names Letter to Anita as Best Documentary. The film, directed by Andrea Meyerson, tells the story of Anita Bryant’s anti-gay campaign and its effect not only on the life of lesbian Ronni Sanlo and her family but also on the budding LGBT civil rights movement.
2015, Viet Nam
The Vietnamese National Assembly passes a law that allows those who have undergone sex reassignment surgery to register under their preferred sex. However, sex reassignment surgery is illegal in Viet Nam. The law went into effect in 2017.
Elizabeth M. Cushier (Nov.25, 1837-Nov. 25, 1931), one of eleven children, was born in New York City. She was the first woman to earn a medical degree and a professor of medicine, and one of New York’s most prominent obstetricians for 25 years. During WWI, Cushier worked in Belgium and France. From 1882, she lived with Dr. Emily Blackwell (October 8, 1826 – September 7, 1910) until Blackwell’s death. Emily Blackwell was the second woman to earn a medical degree at what is now Case Western Reserve University, and the third woman (after Cushier and Lydia Folger Fowler) to earn a medical degree in the United States. Cushier ‘s papers are archived among the Blackwell Family Papers at the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute for Advance Study at Harvard University.
Rosa von Praunheim (born 25 November 1942) is a German film director, author, painter and one of the most famous gay rights activists in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. In over 50 years, von Praunheim has made more than 150 films (short and feature-length films). His works influenced the development of LGBTQ rights movements worldwide. He lives in Berlin with his companion and assistant Oliver Sechting.
The Seattle Gay Liberation Front severed ties with the Young Socialist Alliance because their exclusion of homosexuals mirrored Stalin’s practices.
1997, South Africa
A demonstration was held at the Johannesburg High Court in sup-port of an application to decriminalize sex between men.
Ecuador legalizes same-sex sexual activity, overturning the previous Article 516 of the Penal Code that criminalized such acts. South Africa was the first country to enact a constitutional ban outlawing sexual orientation discrimination.
Mary Edwards Walker (November 26, 1832 – February 21, 1919) a Union army surgeon of the American Civil War, becomes the only woman to receive the United States’ highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor. She was captured by Confederate forces after crossing enemy lines to treat wounded civilians and arrested as a spy. She was sent as a prisoner of war to Richmond, Virginia until released in a prisoner exchange. There are surviving photographs of the hero wearing male clothing, and Walker is said to have been arrested for impersonating a man. She was an American abolitionist, prohibitionist, prisoner of war and surgeon. She was frequently arrested for wearing men’s clothing and insisted on her right to wear clothing that she thought appropriate. Walker was a member of the central woman’s suffrage Bureau in Washington and solicited funds to endow a chair for a woman professor at Howard University medical school. Walker was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame in 2000.
Morocco adds same-sex penalties to its Penal Code.
ABC airs A Question of Love, a TV movie about lesbian lovers in a custody battle over their children, complete with ‘parental discretion advised’ warnings. The lesbian couple was played by the Gena Rowlands and Jane Alexander. The next high profile movie about lesbians would be 16 years later when Glenn Close and Judy Davis starred in Serving in Silence.
Lesbians Cris Williamson (born 1947) and Meg Christian (born 1946) play Carnegie Hall, the first openly lesbian or gay act to do so. Cris Williamson is an American feminist singer/songwriter who achieved fame as a recording artist, and who was a pioneer as a visible lesbian political activist, during a time when few who were not connected to the Lesbian community were aware of Gay and Lesbian issues. Williamson’s music and insight has served as a catalyst for change in the creation of women-owned record companies in the 1970s. Meg is an American folk singer associated with the Lesbian music movement.
The Minneapolis Minnesota civil rights commission rules that Roman Catholic officials violated anti-discrimination laws by evicting the LGBT Catholic organization Dignity from holding services in a church owned facility.
In the U.S. Senate, the anti-gay Federal Marriage Amendment is introduced by Wayne Allard of Colorado, Sam Brownback of Kansas, Jim Bunning of Kentucky, James Inhofe of Oklahoma, and Jeff Sessions of Alabama.
The Justice Minister announces the passage of the Law of Gender Identity which allows transgender people to change their legal documents. The bill was initially proposed by Raysa Torriani, a transgender woman and trans activist, three years earlier. The Law of Gender Identity will legally recognize the identity of 1,500 self-identified transgender people living in Bolivia. “Now, the sisters and brothers who want to change their name and sex, by an administrative resolution, can change their information” in the records of various government institutions, said Virginia Velasco, the minister of justice of Bolivia.
Antinous (November 27, 111 – 30 October 130) is born in Bithynia. The Roman Emperor Hadrian (76-138 CE) was smitten with the 15 year old boy at first glance. From that time on Antinous never left the emperor’s side. On a trip to Egypt he drowned in the Nile. Some say it was because of a prophecy that had declared the Hadrian would die unless a sacrifice were made to the river.
A new law concerning sodomy passes in the Pennsylvania assembly. If committed by a white man, sodomy was punishable by life in prison and, at the discretion of the judge, a whipping every three months for the first year. If married, the man was castrated and his wife was granted a divorce. If committed by a Black man, the punishment for sodomy was death.
The UK Morning Herald newspaper publishes the rumor that the famous novelist William Beckford (1 October 1760 – 2 May 1844) was sleeping with William “Kitty” Courtney (c. 1768 – 26 May 1835), the 9th Earl of Devon, calling the two men “the lowest class of brutes in the most preposterous rites,” and leading to Beckford’s ostracism. Beckford was an English novelist, a consummately knowledgeable art collector and patron of works of decorative art, a critic, travel writer and sometime politician, reputed at one stage in his life to be the richest commoner in England. Courtenay was in his time considered a notorious homosexual and attracted infamy for the affair with Beckford. As a youth, ‘Kitty’ Courtenay was sometimes named by contemporaries as the most beautiful boy in England.
John Smith (1795–1835) and James Pratt (1805–1835) are the last Englishmen to be executed for sodomy under the 1828 Offenses Against the Person Act which had replaced the 1533 Buggery Act. They are hanged at Newgate prison.
Marty Robinson (1942-1992) and Arthur Evans (October 12, 1942 – September 11, 2011) of the Gay Activist Alliance appeared on the Dick Cavett Show. Evans was an early gay rights advocate and author, most well-known for his book Witchcraft. He was a co-founder of Gay Activists Alliance. Robinson was an organizer for gay rights causes for 27 years who was known for his provocative protests.
The London Gay Liberation Front mounts its first public demonstration, a torch-lit protest march on Highbury Fields.
Parents of Gays form in Canada forms.
Harvey Milk and Mayor Macone are assassinated. Conservative Dan White, after discovering that he would not be re-appointed to his seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, took a gun and extra ammunition and goes to City Hall. He enters through a lower level window to avoid the metal detectors and goes to the office of Mayor George Moscone who was supportive of the gay community, and fires four shots, two to the head. Those who heard the gunshots did not realize what they were hearing, giving him time to re-load his gun and go to the office of Supervisor Harvey Milk, the first openly gay man to be elected in a major American city, and fires five shots. Both men are pronounced dead. Tens of thousands gather for a spontaneous vigil. White is convicted on the reduced charge of “voluntary manslaughter” and sentenced to six years in prison. He is released after serving 5 1⁄2 years and dies by suicide soon after returning to his family.
Bosom Buddies, a sitcom about two young broke New York men who dress in drag to live in a low rent, all-girl hotel, premieres on ABC. It stars Tom Hanks and Peter Scolari.
Former Zimbabwean President Canaan Banana (5 March 1936 – 10 November 2003) is convicted of eleven counts of sodomy and indecent assault. He served as the first President of Zimbabwe from 18 April 1980 until 31 December 1987. A Methodist minister, he held the largely ceremonial office of the presidency while his eventual successor, Robert Mugabe, served as Prime Minister of Zimbabwe. During his lifetime, Banana brought together two of the country’s political parties, the Zimbabwe African National Union (ZANU) and the Zimbabwe African People’s Union (ZAPU), became a diplomat for the Organization of African Unity, and headed the religious department of the University of Zimbabwe. His later life was complicated by charges of sodomy—a crime in Zimbabwe—which he denied and for which he was later imprisoned. Banana was found guilty of eleven charges of sodomy, attempted sodomy and indecent assault in 1998. He denied all charges, saying that homosexuality is “deviant, abominable and wrong,” and the allegations made against him were “pathological lies” intended to destroy his political career. His wife Janet Banana later discussed her husband’s alleged homosexuality and confirmed it even though she considered the charges against him to be politically motivated.
1999, New Zealand
Georgina Beyer (born November 1957) is the first transgender member of the New Zealand Parliament and also the first openly transgender mayor in the world. She is also among a very small number of former sex workers to hold political office.
Karl Heinrich Ulrichs (28 August 1825 – 14 July 1895), a pioneer of the early LGBT civil rights movement, writes a letter to his family reconciling his spirituality and his sexuality. He wrote, “Good God has given me love oriented towards men. Asking Him to change that would be extremely anti-Christian.” Ulrichs was a German writer who is seen today as the pioneer of the modern gay rights movement.
Margaret “Midge” Costanza (November 28, 1932 – March 23, 2010) was an American presidential advisor, social and political activist. A lifelong champion of gay and women’s rights, she was known for her wit, outspoken manner and commitment to her convictions.
Rita Mae Brown (born November 28, 1944) is an American feminist writer best known for her coming-of-age autobiographical novel Rubyfruit Jungle. Brown was active in a number of civil rights campaigns but tended to feud with their leaders over the marginalizing of lesbians within the feminist groups. Brown received the Pioneer Award for lifetime achievement at the Lambda Literary Awards in 2015. In the spring of 1964, during her study at the University of Florida at Gainesville, shebecame active in the American Civil Rights Movement. Later in the 1960s, she participated in the anti-war movement, the feminist movement and the Gay Liberation movement. She was involved with the Student Homophile League at Columbia University in 1967 but left it because the men in the league were not interested in women’s rights. Brown took an administrative position with the fledgling National Organization for Women but resigned in January 1970 over comments by Betty Friedan seen by some as anti-gay and by NOW’s attempts to distance itself from lesbian organizations. Brown claimed that lesbian was “the one word that can cause the Executive Committee [of NOW] a collective heart attack.” Starting in 1973, Brown lived in the Hollywood Hills in Los Angeles. In 1978, she moved to Charlottesville, Virginia, where she lived briefly with American actress, author, and screenwriter Fannie Flagg (born September 21, 1944) whom she had met at a Los Angeles party hosted by Marlo Thomas. They later broke up due to, according to Brown, “generational differences,” although Flagg and Brown are the same age. In 1979, Brown met and fell in love with tennis champion Martina Navratilova. In 1980, they bought a horse farm in Charlottesville where they lived together until their breakup over Navratilova’s then concern that coming out would hurt her application for U.S. citizenship (according to the Washington Post). Brown still lives on the estate in Charlottesville.
Aspen becomes the first city in Colorado to pass a gay rights ordinance.
San Francisco Examiner headline is “THE CITY WEEPS,” following the assassination of George Moscone and Harvey Milk.
The National Coalition of Black Gays holds its second national conference in Philadelphia.
A Dallas judge sentences the killer of two gay men to 30 years in prison instead of a life sentence because, as he later tells the Dallas Times Herald, “I don’t much care for queers cruising the streets.” The Dallas Gay Alliance joins political leaders across the country in protesting the judge’s decision.
A judge in Texas was censured for giving a light sentence to a teenager who murdered two gay men. He explained the sentence by saying that he couldn’t give a life sentence to a teenage boy “just because he killed a couple of homosexuals.”
In Allston, Massachusetts, transgender woman of color Rita Hester (30 November 1963 – 28 November 1998) is murdered. The ensuing candlelight vigil a few days later was attended by 250 people and inspired the Transgender Day of Remembrance, observed each November 20th worldwide.
John Felton (c. 1595 – 29 November 1628) is hanged. He was a lieutenant in the English Army who killed George Villiers, First Duke of Buckingham (28 August 1592 – 23 August 1628), and most probably the lover of King James I, in the Greyhound Pub of Portsmouth on August 23, 1628. Villiers was the last in a succession of handsome young favorites on whom the King lavished affection and patronage, although the personal relationship between the two has been much debated.
Jazz great Billy Strayhorn (November 29, 1915 – May 31, 1967) is born. Planet Out says, “Although Billy Strayhorn was considered by many to be Duke Ellington’s musical superior, his refusal to stay in the closet forced him to take a back seat. Central to the jazz movement, Strayhorn infused his compositions with complex har-monies and plenty of soul. His willful obscurity brought him much pain, but it also served to fuel his creativity and boundless talent.” He was an American jazz composer, pianist, lyricist, and arranger, best known for his successful collaboration with bandleader and composer Duke Ellington, lasting nearly three decades. His compositions include Take the ‘A’ Train, Chelsea Bridge, A Flower Is a Lovesome Thing, and Lush Life. Strayhorn was openly gay. His first partner was African American musician Aaron Bridgers (January 10, 1918 – November 3, 2003), a jazz pianist who moved to Paris in 1947. He and Strayhorn were lovers from 1939 until Bridgers’ move to France. In 1964, Strayhorn was diagnosed with esophageal cancer, the disease that took his life in 1967. Strayhorn finally succumbed in the early morning on May 31, 1967, in the company of his partner, Bill Grove.
Close to bankruptcy after repeated Nazi raids and seizures of his publications and property, Adolf Brand (14 November 1874 – 2 February 1945) writes a letter to the Sexicology Society in London announcing the end of the Homophile movement he has led. He died in an Allied bombing raid in 1945. Adolf Brand, who began publishing one of the earliest gay publications in Berlin, said he was unable to continue. Nazi raids and seizures had left him financially ruined. Brand was a German writer, individualist anarchist, and pioneering campaigner for the acceptance of male bisexuality and homosexuality.
A Quebec Superior Court judge rules that the Montreal Catholic School Commission did not have justifiable grounds to refuse to rent space to gay rights group ADGQ and therefore was not exempt from the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms. The ruling overturns the province’s human rights commission’s second opinion in 1978 and becomes the first legal victory against discrimination since adoption of the gay rights clause in Canada’s Charter of Rights and Freedoms of the Constitution in December 1977.
West Hollywood, the first city in the U.S. to have a city council with a majority of LGBTQ members, is incorporated in Los Angeles County. Less than a month after being established as a city, West Hollywood approves a gay rights ordinance.
Randy Kraft, a serial killer who murdered at least 61 gay young men, is sentenced to death in California. He was arrested in 1983 and remains in a California prison on death row waiting for his sentence to be carried out.
U.S. President George H. W. Bush signs an immigration bill ending the “Homosexuals and Other Sex Perverts” ban.
Without comment, the U.S. Supreme Court refuses to hear argu-ments appealing the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court ruling that same-sex marriage must be allowed in that state, in essence letting the ruling stand.
2007, Viet Nam
First same-sex wedding in Hanoi between two men takes place though it is not legally recognized. The grooms, Dinh Cong Khanh and Nguyen Thai Nguyen, now live in Canada. The wedding raised much attention in the gay and lesbian community in Viet Nam.
Uruguay becomes the first Latin American country to pass a national civil union law.
In the Virginia Colony, Richard Cornish, an English ship captain, was hanged for sodomy for allegedly making advances on an indentured servant, William Couse. His conviction and execution, angrily contested by his brother and others, is the first to be recorded in the American colonies. In 1993 the William and Mary University Gay and Lesbian Alumni created the Richard Cornish Endowment Fund for Gay and Lesbian Resource.
Oscar Wilde (16 October 1854 – 30 November 1900) dies. He was an Irish poet and playwright. After writing in different forms throughout the 1880s, he became one of London’s most popular playwrights in the early 1890s. He is best remembered for his epigrams and plays, his novel The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as the circumstances of his imprisonment and early death. Wilde was initially buried in the Cimetière de Bagneux outside Paris; in 1909 his remains were disinterred and transferred to Père Lachaise Cemetery. In 2017, with the coming into force of the Policing and Crime Act 2017, Wilde was among an estimated 50,000 men who were pardoned for his offence of homosexuality as it was no longer a crime in the UK.
Clay Aiken (born Clayton Holmes Grissom; born November 30, 1978) is born. He is an American singer, songwriter, television personality, actor, author, politician and activist. Aiken was the 2014 Democratic nominee in the North Carolina 2nd congressional district election. After several years of public speculation, Aiken came out as gay in a September 2008 interview with People magazine. In April 2009, Aiken was honored by the Family Equality Council advocacy group at its annual benefit dinner in New York City.
National League Baseball president Bart Giamatti fires umpire Dave Pallone (born October 5, 1951) for being gay. Pallone is a former Baseball umpire who worked in the National League from 1979 to 1988. During Pallone’s career, he wore uniform number 26. He was “outed” in a New York Post article later in the year. Pallone later wrote his autobiography, Behind the Mask: My Double Life in Baseball, which became New York Times best-seller, and has been republished as an e-book. Pallone now does diversity training for corporations, colleges, universities and athletes with the NCAA. Pallone was part of the first class of inductees to The National Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame in 2013.
Columbus Ohio mayor Dana Rinehart signs a hate-crimes bill which includes the term sexual orientation. Rinehart had asked the city council to remove the term, saying that it’s vague and does not be-long in the ordinance. The council refused.
President Bill Clinton signs a military policy directive that prohibits openly gay and lesbian Americans from serving in the military, but also prohibits the harassment of “closeted” homosexuals. The policy is known as “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” It was repealed on September 20, 2011.
The first U.S. government-sponsored advertising targeting gay men debuts on the eve of World AIDS Day when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention releases a public service television announcement cautioning men to have “smart sex.”
South Africa is the first African country to legalize same-sex marriage.