Today in LGBT History – January 14

“If your ancestors arrived when “just get here” was the only requirement to be here legally; If they arrived when the immigration policy was changed to encourage white migration to the US; If your family benefited from US policies that gave your nation’s exiles and refugees a “wet foot/dry foot” fast pass to legally remain…then your criticism of those fleeing climate disasters, war, famine, violence, political persecution and poverty by coming to America now that the door open to your family is slammed closed is particularly abhorrent.”   —Nadine Smith, Equality Florida

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

Today in LGBT History – January 14

1523, Italy – The famous artist Benvenuto Cellini (3 November 1500 – 13 February 1571) is sentenced – for the fourth time – of committing sodomy on both men and women. He 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.

1540, Italy – Pier Luigi Farnese (19 November 1503 – 10 September 1547) is the Duke of Parma and the son of Pope Paul II, He mounts a manhunt in search of a boy who had refused his sexual advances. In 1537, Farnese was accused of raping Cosimo Gheri, the young bishop of Fano who died shortly afterward.

1904, UK – Cecil Beaton (14 January 1904 – 18 January 1980) is born in London. He was an English fashion, portrait and war photographer, diarist, painter, interior designer and an Academy Award–winning stage and costume designer for films and the theatre. He was knighted in the 1972 New Year Honours  Beaton had relationships with various men: his last lover was former Olympic fencer and teacher Kinmont Hoitsma (April 10, 1934 – September 30, 2013).

1925 – Japanese poet-dramatist-novelist Yukio Mishima (January 14, 1925 – November 25, 1970) is born in Tokyo. An avid body builder he tried to live the life of a samurai. In 1970, he committed ritual suicide outside the Japanese parliament with a young disciple and lover during a neo-fascist demonstration.

1952 – Jim Kepner (1923 – 15 November 1997) and members of Mattachine in Los Angeles discuss the idea of publishing a magazine for the LGBT community. They named their organization ONE Inc. and put out the first issue in January, 1953. In 1956, ONE opened the Institute for Homophile Studies. Today, ONE Archives at the USC Libraries is the oldest remaining LGBT organization in the US and the largest repository of LGBT materials in the world.

1975 – The first federal gay rights bill is introduced to address discrimination based on sexual orientation. The bill later goes to the Judiciary Committee but is never brought for consideration.

1978 – A rally and march is organized to protest the visit of Anita Bryant to Toronto. Her trip was sponsored by fundamentalist group Renaissance Canada. 

2001, Canada – Two couples, one gay, the other lesbian, were married in a double ceremony at Toronto’s Metropolitan Community Church after Rev. Brent Hawkes (born June 2, 1950), the pastor, discovered that the ancient Christian tradition of reading banns was still legal in Ontario and did not specify sexuality. The Ontario government refused to register the marriages citing federal law defining marriage as being between a man and a woman. Rev. Hawkes lives in Toronto with John Sproule, his partner of more than thirty years. They married on March 7, 2006.

Stand up, speak out, share your story!




(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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