Rudyard Kipling said: If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.The snippets of LGBTQ history here are the stories of our lives, the stories of the giants on whose shoulders we all stand. Learn about them then tell the stories…and remember, because knowing your history IS resistance!
Thanks for taking this journey with me. Now go write your story!
Today in LGBT History – FEBRUARY 26
1556, Italy – Benvenuto Cellini (3 November 1500 – 13 February 1571) was an Italian goldsmith, sculptor, draftsman, soldier, musician, and artist who also wrote a famous autobiography and poetry. He was one of the most important artists of Mannerism. He is remembered for his skill in making pieces such as the Cellini Salt Cellar and Perseus with the Head of Medusa. On this day, he wasaccused of sodomy with his apprentice, Fernando di Giovanni de Montepulciano. This was not the first accusation against Cellini. His penalty was a fine of 50 golden scudi and four years in prison which was remitted to four years of house arrest after intercession by the Medicis.
1564, UK – Christopher Marlowe (26 February 1564 – 30 May 1593)is baptized in Canterbury, England. He was an English playwright, poet and translator of the Elizabethan era. Marlowe was the foremost Elizabethan tragedian of his day. He greatly influenced William Shakespeare, who was born in the same year as Marlowe and who rose to become the pre-eminent Elizabethan playwright after Marlowe’s mysterious early death. Marlowe’s plays are known for the use of blank verse and their overreaching protagonists.Little is known about Marlowe’s life, so much has been written about him over the centuries to create a persona to match his work. He’s now considered gay by default. What is known is that he was a firebrand as a youth, that he was an anti-clerical rebel, that he was in trouble with the law, and that he was dead of a stab wound at the age of 29. Many of his surviving works contain homoerotic references. His epigram reads “All they that love not tobacco and boys are fools.”
1649, Sweden – Queen Christina (8 December 1626 – 19 April 1689),citing her wish to not marry, abdicates the throne. Elected queen at the age of six after her father King Gustav II Adolph died in battle, Christina was raised and educated as a boy until she took the throne in 1632 at the age of 18. In addition to refusing to marry or have children, Christina had a deeply intimate and passionate relationship with one of her ladies-in-waiting, Countess Ebba Sparre (1629 – 19 March 1662), whom she called “Belle.” She wrote extensively about Sparre’s beauty, and referred to her as a bedfellow.
1935 – Jane Wagner (born February 26, 1935) is born. She is an American writer, director and producer, and best known as Lily Tomlin‘s (born September 1, 1939) comedy writer, collaborator and wife.
1990 – Refusing to consider the cases of Ben-Shalom v. Stone andWoodward v. U.S., the U.S. Supreme Court effectively upholds the right of the U.S. military to discharge gays and lesbians of the armed forces.
2013 – Marco McMillian (April 23, 1979 – February 26, 2013), 34, was the first openly gay political candidate in Mississippi. He was murdered by Lawrence Reed, possibly after McMillian showed romantic interest in him. Marco was a businessman and candidate for mayor of Clarksdale, Mississippi in 2013. He was “the first openly gay man to be a viable candidate for public office in Mississippi”. McMillian was CEO of MWM & Associates, a firm that provided consulting to non-profit organizations.
Stand up, speak out, share your story!
(Historical information obtained from a variety of sources including QUIST at facebook.com/quistapp, Back2Stonewall.com, Lavender Effect, DataLounge.com, Arron’s Gay Info, All Things Queer, RS Levinson, Amara Das Wilhelm, out.com, Safe Schools Coalition, and/or Wikipedia. If you wish to edit an item or add an item, please send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!)