Today in LGBT History – February 12

To me, a leader is someone who holds her- or himself accountable for finding potential in people and processes. And so what I think is really important is sustainability.   —Brene Brown

Learning our history is resistance! Thanks for taking this journey with me. Now go write your story!

Today in LGBT History – February 12

1847, Germany – Philipp Friedrich Alexander, Prince of Eulenburg and Hertefeld, Count von Sandels (12 February 1847 – 17 September 1921) was a diplomat and composer of Imperial Germany who achieved considerable influence as the closest friend of Wilhelm II. He was the central member of the so-called Liebenberg Circle, a group of artistically minded German aristocrats within Wilhelm’s entourage. Eulenburg played an important role in the rise of Bernhard von Bülow, but fell from power in 1907 due to the Harden–Eulenburg affair when he was accused of homosexuality.

1976 – Gay actor, Sal Mineo (January 10, 1939 – February 12, 1976), 37, is stabbed to death in the garage of his West Hollywood apartment building at 8569 Holloway Drive. The crime goes unsolved for a number of years until his murderer, Lionel Ray Williams, is caught and convicted. Mineo known for his performance as John “Plato” Crawford opposite James Dean in the film Rebel Without a Cause (1955). He was twice nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, for his roles in Rebel Without a Cause and Exodus (1960). At the time of his death, he was in a six-year relationship and was living with male actor Courtney Burr III.

1982 – The film Making Love, starring Kate JacksonHarry Hamlin and Michael Ontkean, and one of the first positive Hollywood depiction’s of bisexuality and gay male romance, opens in theaters across the US. Producers timed the release of the film with Valentine’s Day weekend. In response to complaints about the film’s depiction of gay love, star Harry Hamlin rather presciently comments “The more radical elements of the gay culture are going to be disappointed by all the films coming out now sponsored by the major studios.  A lot of [these people] feel they’re way beyond where these films take us.  But the more intelligent know there has to be a groundbreaking ceremony, which is what this is.”

2004 – Under the direction of Mayor Gavin Newsom, the City of San Francisco begins performing same-sex marriages, starting with Phyllis Lyon (born November 10, 1924) and Del Martin (May 5, 1921 – August 27, 2008), who had been a couple for 51 years. That marriage was invalidated by the California Supreme Court, but Lyon and Martin married once again on June 16, 2008, a couple of months before Del Martin’s death on August 27, 2008. Over 80 couples were given quick ceremonies. Robin Tyler and Troy Perry (born July 27, 1940) , with attorney Gloria Allred, file a lawsuit for marriage equality shortly after the San Francisco marriages were dissolved.  One month later, the cases were consolidated. The marriage equality case actually started in Los Angeles rather than San Francisco.

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(Historical information obtained from a variety of sources including QUIST at,, Lavender Effect,, Arron’s Gay Info, All Things Queer, RS Levinson, Amara Das Wilhelm, Safe Schools Coalition, and/or Wikipedia. If you wish to edit an item or add an item, please send an email to me at Thanks!)

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