1900`s-Present LGBTQ History
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This timeline looks at significant events for the LGBTQ communities. We focus mostly on the United States, but important world events are also included. This information is taken from the "Timeline of LGBT history" on Wikipedia and is current as of November 2012.
1924- The Society for Human Rights in Chicago becomes the country's earliest
known gay rights organization.
1926 – The New York Times is the first major publication to use the word
1936 – Mona's 440 Club, the first lesbian bar in America, opened in San
Francisco in 1936. Mona's waitresses and female performers wore tuxedos and patrons dressed their roles.
1937 – The first use of the pink triangle for gay men in Nazi concentration
1938 – The word Gay is used for the first time in reference to homosexuality.
1941 – Transsexuality was first used in reference to homosexuality
1945 – Upon the liberation of Nazi concentration camps by
Allied forces, those interned for homosexuality are not freed, but required to serve out the full term of their sentences under Paragraph 175
1947 – Vice Versa, the first North American lesbian publication,
is written and self-published by Lisa Ben (real name Edith Eyde) in Los Angeles.
1948 - Alfred Kinsey publishes the Sexual Behavior in the Human
Male, revealing to the public that homosexuality is far more widespread than was commonly believed.
1951- The Mattachine Society, the first national gay rights organization, is formed by Harry Hay, considered by many to be the founder of the gay rights movement.
1952 – Christine Jorgensen becomes the first widely publicized person to have undergone sex reassignment surgery, in this case, male to female, creating a world-wide sensation.
1956- The Daughters of Bilitis, a pioneering national lesbian organization, is founded.
1957- Psychologist Evelyn Hooker publishes a study showing that homosexual men are as well adjusted as non-homosexual men, which becomes a major factor in the American Psychiatric Association removing homosexuality from its handbook of disorders in 1973.
1958 – The United States Supreme Court rules in favor of the First Amendment rights of a gay and lesbian magazine, marking the first time the United States Supreme Court had ruled on a case involving homosexuality.
1966 – The Compton's Cafeteria Riot occurred in August 1966 in
the Tenderloin district of San Francisco. This incident was one of the first recorded transgender riots in United States history, preceding the more famous 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York City by three years.
1967 – Pride is first used in relation to the LGBTQ movement
after protests following a raid in Los Angeles.
1967 – The Advocate was first published in September as "The
Los Angeles Advocate," a local newsletter alerting gay men to police raids in Los Angeles gay bars.
1969 – The Stonewall riots occur in New York.
1970 – The first Gay Liberation Day March is held in New York City
The first LGBT Pride Parade is held in Los Angeles.
1971 - Dr. Frank Kameny becomes the first openly gay candidate for the United
States Congress. 1972 - Hawaii legalizes homosexuality 1973 - The American Psychiatric Association removes homosexuality from its
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-II) 1974 - Kathy Kozachenko becomes the first openly gay American elected to
public office when she wins a seat on the Ann Arbor, Michigan city council. The Bisexual Forum, the first support group for the Bisexual Community is formed. Robert Grant founds American Christian Cause to oppose the "gay agenda".
1975 - Minneapolis becomes the first city in the United States to pass
trans-inclusive civil rights protection legislation.
1977 - Harvey Milk is elected city-county supervisor in San Francisco,
becoming the fifth out American elected to public office
Anne Holmes became the first openly lesbian minister ordained by the
United Church of Christ
1978 - San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George
Moscone are assassinated by former Supervisor Dan White. The rainbow flag is first used as a symbol of gay pride.
1979 – The first national homosexual rights march on Washington, DC
1981 - The first official documentation of the condition to be known as AIDS was published by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on 5 June 1981.
Tennis player Billie Jean King became the first prominent professional athlete to come out as a lesbian.
1982 - Wisconsin becomes the first state to outlaw discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. The first Gay Games is held in San Francisco, attracting 1,600 participants
1983 - Massachusetts Representative Gerry Studds outs himself on the floor of the House, becoming the first openly gay member of Congress.
1984 - Berkeley, California becomes the first city in the U.S. to adopt a program of domestic partnership health benefits for city employee
Reconstructionist Judaism became the first Jewish denomination to allow openly lesbian rabbis and cantors.
1985 - Deborah Brin as the first openly gay or lesbian rabbi in Judaism.
1986 - Bowers v. Hardwick, U.S. Supreme Court upholds Georgia's anti-sodomy, ruling that the constitutional right to privacy does not extend to homosexual relations, but it does not state whether the law can be enforced against heterosexuals.
1987 - Congressman Barney Frank comes out.
1990 - Justin Fashanu is the first professional footballer to come out. Dale McCormick of Maine became the first open lesbian elected to a state Senate.
1991 - The red ribbon is first used as a symbol of the campaign against HIV/AIDS. Sherry Harris was elected to the City Council in Seattle, Washington, making her the first openly lesbian African-American elected official.
1992 - The World Health Organization declares homosexuality no longer an illness. Althea Garrison of Massachusetts was elected as the first transgender state legislator in America.
1993 - Don't Ask Don't Tell (DADT) is signed into law. The first Dyke March is held with 20,000 women participating.
1994 - Deborah Batts became the first openly gay or lesbian federal judge in New York
1995 - Rachel Maddow became the first openly gay or lesbian American to win an international Rhodes scholarship.
1996 - Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is signed into law.
1997 - Ellen DeGeneres came out as a lesbian.
1998 - Gender identity was added to the mission of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG) after a vote at their annual meeting in SF. PFLAG is the first national LGBT organization to officially adopt a transgender-inclusion policy for its work.
2000 - Vermont enacts Civil Unions.
The Transgender Pride flag was first shown, at a pride parade in Phoenix, Arizona.
2001 - Rhode Island and Maryland pass significant legislation to protect the LGBTQ communities.
2002 - Alaska and New York pass significant legislation to protect the LGBTQ communities.
2003 - Arizona, Kentucky, Michigan, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania pass significant legislation to protect the LGBTQ communities.
PFLAG established its Transgender Network (TNET), recognized with the same privileges and responsibilities as its regular chapters.
Lawrence v. Texas repealed the anti-sodomy laws of Texas, which, by extension, invalidated sodomy laws in 13 other states.
2004 - Same sex marriage is banned in Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Oregon and Utah.
Same-sex marriage is legalized in Massachusetts. Civil unions and other partnership laws are instated in New Jersey and Maine. The first same-sex couple is legally married in the US (California). Proposition 8 is passed, annulling all previous same-sex marriages.
2006 - Alabama, Colorado, Idaho, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin ban same-sex marriage.
2007 - Oregon enacts domestic partnerships.
Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Ohio, Oregon, and Vermont pass significant legislation to protect the LGBTQ communities. The first ever gay pride parade in a Muslim country is held in Istanbul, Turkey
2008 - California and Connecticut legalize same-sex marriage.
Illinois, New Jersey, Washington, and Washington, D.C. pass significant legislation to protect the LGBTQ communities.
Portland voters elect Sam Adams (Oregon politician) mayor, making it the largest city in the US with an openly gay mayor. After the murder of Angie Zapata, the killer is convicted for committing a hate crime, the first prosecuted with a transgender victim. Kate Brown was elected as the Oregon Secretary of State, becoming America's first openly bisexual statewide officeholder. Stu Rasmussen is elected as Silverton mayor, making them the first trans mayor.
2009 - Iowa and Vermont instate same-sex marriage.
Colorado, Wisconsin, Nevada, and Washington all instate some form of partnership laws. The California Supreme Court upholds Proposition 8, the ballot initiative that banned same-sex marriage in November 2008, with a 6–1 vote. Diego Sanchez became the first openly transgender person to work on Capitol Hill; he was hired as a legislative assistant for Barney Frank. The first Black chapter of PFLAG is formed in Portland, Oregon.
2010- New Hamshire and Washington D.C. enact marriage equality.
2011- New York enacts same sex marriage.
Victoria Kolakowski became the first openly transgender judge in America.
Illinois, Rhode Island, Delaware, and Hawaii enacts civil unions. The repeal of DADT is implemented. Chaz Bono appeared on the 13th season of the US version of Dancing with the Stars in 2011. This was the first time an openly transgender man starred on a major network television show for something unrelated to being transgender. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) voted to allow the ordination of openly gay and lesbian ministers.
2012- Delaware and Hawaii enact civil unions.
Maine, Maryland, and Washington enact same sex marriage. Prop. 8 of California is deemed unconstitutional. Several courts find DOMA unconstitutional. Barack Obama becomes the first sitting president to openly support same-sex marriage. In the November elections, historic wins are made. Some of (but not all) include Tammy Baldwin (first openly gay senator), Mark Takano (first openly gay person of color elected to Congress), Kyrsten Sinema (first openly bisexual member of Congress). Minnesota rejects defining marriage as between one man and one woman.