LGBTQ History

The Stonewall uprising began June 28, 1969, in response to a police raid at The Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York, and has since...
Multiple rainbows flag items
In 2017, in response to a slew of racist incidents in the Gayborhood, Philadelphia added black and brown stripes to the traditional six-...
Cartoon drawing of a tangled ball of yarn with emotions such as “anxiety” and “rage” tangled up
Title page to Garrard Conley's workbook from the gay-conversion camp Love in ActionIt is dangerous to be different, and certain kinds of...
File of condolence letters
In October 1998, a college student named Matt Shepard was brutally murdered in Laramie, Wyoming, by two young men. Matt was slight of build...
Silver coin with Queen Cristina of Sweden
With Pride Month celebrations recognizing LGBTQ history and culture throughout the country this June, what better way to highlight the...
An elaborate outfit comprising a crimson robe with matching skirt with gold lace overlay. There is a sloping sash placed around the shoulders and a hat with four points.
In reflecting on National Coming Out Day, Curator Kenneth Cohen was reminded of the fascinating story of Charlotte Cushman that we've...
Scene on stage with costumes, bandstand, musicians
While watching a screening of Paris is Burning hosted by the Smithsonian Latino Center, I was entranced by the dazzling...
Four buttons. "How dare you presume I'm heterosexual!" "Come out, come out." "I AM R U." "Closets are for clothes."
"Better Gay than Grumpy""My Unicorn is a Lesbian. Is Yours?""I'm Straight. But not Narrow"The National Museum of American History recently...
Woman sitting on couch with turquoise fabric in her lap, holding some of its folds. Smiling. Gray couch, bookshelf in background.
Curator Dr. Katherine Ott invited students in Dr. Samuel J. Redman's Museum/Historic Site Interpretation Seminar to explore the museum's...
White and blue tennis Dress, worn by Bille Jean King during the "Battle of the Sexes"
As objects representing Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender, Queer/Questioning history enter the museum's collection today,...
Tie, note book
On its 10th anniversary, Curator Katherine Ott discusses the landmark case of Lawrence v. Texas.On a warm September evening in 1998,...
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Editor's note: This post was originally posted on the Smithsonian Collections Blog. December 1st is World AIDS Day.   Helping...
People on a stage
The Latino D.C. History Project is an initiative to document, preserve, interpret, and display the varied stories of Latino life in the...
Person with gloves and specialized equipment and fact mask in lab setting
It’s been 30 years since the first cases of HIV and AIDS were reported and, since then, the disease has created a...
Button with "National AIDS Vigil" text in white on black background
Editor's Note: This is the fifth post in a series exploring the 30th anniversary of HIV and AIDS. Beginning last June 3, the National...
Quilt spread out with many people looking at it, some kneeling
Editor’s Note: This is the fourth post in a series exploring the 30th anniversary of HIV and AIDS. Beginning on June 3, the National Museum...
Color photograph of four people in which shirts, arms inter-linked, walking on or standing in street during daytime, parade crowd in background
Editor’s Note: This is the second post in a series exploring the 30th anniversary of HIV and AIDS. Beginning on June 3, the National Museum...
Time magazine cover with text: "AIDS The Growing Threat / What's Being Done"
AIDS - The Growing Threat, What’s Being Done. Time Magazine, Aug. 12, 1985.Editor’s note: The museum is planning a special display of...