Happy LGBT Pride Month
I'm proud to live in and represent a city that has been such a seminal part of the fight for LGBT rights in our country. Just a few of the pioneering things that have happened here:
1908: The first “notorious” gay bar, The Dash, opened in the Barbary Coast — and was shut down almost immediately by the vice squad.
1955: Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon form the Daughters of Bilitis, the first lesbian rights organization.
1964: Life Magazine calls San Francisco “the gay capital of America.”
1966: The owner of Compton’s Cafeteria calls the police to chase out trans patrons, who rioted — three years before the more famous Stonewall Riots.
1970: Gay activists hold the first “Gay-In” march and protest. By 1972 this evolved into the Gay Liberation Day Parade, which we now call SF Pride.
1977: Harvey Milk becomes the first openly gay publicly elected official in San Francisco and California, and one of the first in the country. He was assassinated the following year along with then Mayor Moscone.
1978: Gilbert Baker designs the first rainbow flag as a symbol of the LGBT community. Each stripe represented a theme: Hot pink for sexuality, red for life, orange for healing, yellow for sunlight, green for nature, turquoise for magic/art, blue for serenity, and violet for spirit. Due to demand and availability of fabric, a six-color version became more prevalent.
2004: In an act of civil disobedience, Mayor Newsom allows City Hall to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, years before marriage equality in California and eventually the entire US. The first couple married was Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon.
Did you know my husband and I were co-developers of the Castro tour for San Francisco City Guides in 2004? Today it’s known as the preeminent LGBT neighborhood, but the community previously found homes in the Polk, and earlier yet in North Beach. If you want to learn more about the San Francisco's LGBT history or want to explore the gayborhood, let's chat.