Today in LGBT History – March 23

“If machines produce everything we need, the outcome will depend on how things are distributed. Everyone can enjoy a life of luxurious leisure if the machine-produced wealth is shared, or most people can end up miserably poor if the machine-owners successfully lobby against wealth redistribution. So far, the trend seems to be toward the second option, with technology driving ever-increasing inequality.”  —Stephen Hawking

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

Today in LGBT History – March 23

1874, Germany – J. C. Leyendecker (March 23,1974 – July 25,1951) is born. He was one of the preeminent American illustrators of the early 20th century. He is best known for his poster, book and advertising illustrations, the trade character known as The Arrow Collar Man, and his numerous covers for The Saturday Evening Post. Between 1896 and 1950, Leyendecker painted more than 400 magazine covers. During the Golden Age of American Illustration, for The Saturday Evening Post alone, J. C. Leyendecker produced 322 covers, as well as many advertisement illustrations for its interior pages. No other artist, until the arrival of Norman Rockwell two decades later, was so solidly identified with one publication. Leyendecker “virtually invented the whole idea of modern magazine design. Leyendecker never married, and he lived with another man, Charles Beach, for much of his adult life, who is assumed to have been his lover and who was the original model of the famous Arrow Collar Man.

1903, Morocco – A letter from Frances Hodgkin (28 April 1869 – 13 May 1947) to Dorothy Kate Richmond (12 September 1861 – 16 April 1935) begging her to join her in Morocco was written. The two New Zealand painters were travel partners and lived together in Wellington. Hodgkins was a painter chiefly of landscape and still life, and for a short period was a designer of textiles. She was born in New Zealand, but spent most of her working life in Britain. She is considered one of New Zealand’s most prestigious and influential painters, although it is the work from her life in Europe, rather than her home country, on which her reputation rests. Richmond was a New Zealand painter noted for her watercolour paintings of natural plants and animals and panoramic landscapes.

1950 – Terrance “Terry” Sweeney (born March 23, 1950) is an American writer, comedian and actor. He was SNL’s first openly gay male cast member and was “out” prior to being hired as a cast member. Sweeney’s run on the show came at a time when there were few openly gay characters or actors on television. For roughly 27 years, there were no other openly gay cast members on SNL  until Kate McKinnon (born January 6, 1984), a former cast member of Logo’s The Big Gay Sketch Show, was added to the cast in April 2012. Terry Sweeney’s partner is Lanier Laney (born 03/18/1956), a comedy writer who also wrote for SNL in the 1985–1986 season.

1971 – Frank Kameny  (May 21, 1925 – October 11, 2011) is the first openly gay person to run for a U.S. Congressional seat, representing Washington D.C. He losses the election.

1988, Israel  – Israel decriminalizes same-sex acts between consenting adults.

1995 – Threatened with an economic boycott and faced strong opposition from state and national lesbian and gay activists, the Montana Senate unanimously votes to delete same-sex acts from a list of crimes for which convicts have to register with local authorities.

2004 – President Bush’s proposed ban on same-sex marriage is denounced by Coretta Scott King (April 27, 1927 – January 30, 2006) who was an American author, activistCivil Rights leader, and the wife of Martin Luther King, Jr

2005, St. Kitts and Nevis  – The Windjammer Barefoot Cruise ship with 110 gay men is not allowed to dock stating that they don’t want homosexuality to be part of their culture.

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!)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.