Today in LGBT History – January 19

“Our daughters’ daughters will adore us, and they’ll sing in grateful chorus: Well done, sister Suffragettes! ”  — a pro-suffrage protest song sung by the character Mrs. Winifred Banks in the 1964 Disney film Mary Poppins

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

Today in LGBT History – January 19

1887 – American critic Alexander Woollcott (January 19, 1887 – January 23, 1943) is born in Phalanx, New Jersey. He was an American critic and commentator for The New Yorker magazine and a member of the Algonquin Round Table. He was the inspiration for Sheridan Whiteside, the main character in the play The Man Who Came to Dinner (1939) by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart, and for the far less likable character Waldo Lydecker in the film Laura (1944). Woollcott was convinced he was the inspiration for his friend Rex Stout’s brilliant, eccentric detective Nero Wolfe, an idea that Stout denied.

1901 – New York Times reports story of FTM politician Murray H. Hall (1841 – January 16, 1901). Murray lives as a male for decades, married women twice, and was found to be female-bodied only after he died of breast cancer. Murray Hall was a New York City bail bondsman and Tammany Hall politician. The headline reads: “Murray Hall Fooled Many Shrewd Men – How for Years She Masqueraded in Male Attire – Had Married Two Women.”

1943 – Janis Joplin (January 19, 1943 – October 4, 1970) is born in Port Arthur, Texas. She was an American rock singer and songwriter and one of the biggest female rock stars of her era. Bisexual, she did her best to sleep with as many people as she could in the 1960s. The official cause of death was a heroin overdose, possibly compounded by alcohol. On August 8, 2014, the United States Postal Service revealed a commemorative stamp honoring Janis Joplin, as part of its Music Icons Forever Stamp series during a first-day-of-issue ceremony at the Outside Lands Music Festival at Golden Gate Park.[

1974 – A Lesbian Conference is organized by Gay Women’s Collective and held at the Montreal Women’s Center. The small group of women who take part agree to hold a major conference for lesbians in North America the following year. 

1976 – Campaigning for the Democratic presidential nomination, former Vice President Hubert Humphrey becomes one of the first nationally known politicians to endorse gay and lesbian rights.

2001 — Chief Seattle Boy Scout Council agrees to allow the Garfield High School Outdoor Program — one of the largest troops in Washington State — to change its status from “Venture Crew” to “Explorer Post.” Venture Crews are co-ed troops for high school aged people and, as part of the main body of the Boy Scouts of America, they discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation and religion. Explorer Posts, in contrast, are part of the Boy Scouts’ Learning for Life Program. They do not have a policy of shunning young people or leaders who are atheists or gay. Student activism pays off.

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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