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LGBT Studies: Libraries and Archival Collections

Libraries and Archival Collections

  • ACT UP Oral History Project- A full-text collection of over 100 interviews with surviving members of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power- New York.
  • Archives Gaie du Quebec - Collects and preserves all types of documentation (both paper and media) relating to the gay or lesbian community of the province of Quebec.
  • The ArQuives: Canada's LGBTQ2 Archives (Toronto) - Created in 1973 by the collective that produced the newspaper The Body Politic, the Archives' mission is “to collect and maintain information and materials relating to the gay and lesbian movement in Canada and elsewhere.” Researchers investigating any aspect of Canadian gay culture should also visit the site for the Archives Gaie du Quebec for the Francophone viewpoint on specific issues.
  • Gay and Lesbian Archives of the Pacific Northwest  
  • Gerber/Hart Library and Archives (Chicago) - Founded in 1981, this collection's primary focus is on the collection and preservation of the Midwest's homosexual and bisexual history.
  • IHLIA LGBT Heritage (Amsterdam) - One of the primary European archival collections on homosexual history, with holdings reaching back to 1870 and ranging from traditional sexology research to contemporary periodicals.
  • James C. Hormel Gay and Lesbian Center and Collections (San Francisco Public Library) - A showpiece of the new San Francisco Public Library, this major research center's collections focuses both in the national and worldwide gay and lesbian communities. Information on the extensive archival holdings of the Center, including the personal papers of politician Harvey Milk and journalist Randy Shilts, is provided.
  • June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives: Insuring the Future By Preserving the Past - Originally known as the West Coast Lesbian Collection, these are the only archives in the western United States “dedicated exclusively to preserving lesbian history.” Holdings reach back to 1895 and include the papers of veteran lesbian activists Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin.
  • Leather Archives and Museum -A unique institution based in Chicago covering the history of the leather/levi community, with substantial holdings about gay men and lesbians.
  • Lesbian and Gay Newsmedia Archive ( UK )
  • Lesbian Herstory Archives
  • Lesbian and Gay Pulp Fiction Collection (Duke University) -- This detailed site offers an extensive annotated bibliography of many lesbian pulp titles and, uniquely, a list of films made based on them. Readers unfamiliar with the genre will find the Introduction essay an excellent beginning.
  • LGBTQ Religious Archives Network - ”The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Religious Archives Network (LGBT-RAN) coordinates and supports the identification, collection and preservation of personal papers and organizational records from lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender religious movements. To encourage scholarly research and historical study of these important movements for social change, LGBT-RAN disseminates information about these records and provides and facilitates access to them, using digital technology when possible.“
  • ONE Institute International Gay and Lesbian Archives (Los Angeles) - Housed at the University of Southern California, this collection was formed in 1994 through the merger of the library of ONE (the oldest continuing homosexual activist group in the western hemisphere, founded in 1952) and the huge private collection of veteran activist Jim Kepner.
  • QueerZineArchive Project - ”The mission of the Queer Zine Archive Project (QZAP) is to establish a “living history” archive of past and present queer zines and to encourage current and emerging zine publishers to continue to create. In curating such a unique aspect of culture, we value a collectivist approach that respects the diversity of experiences that fall under the heading “queer.””
  • Rainbow History Project (Washington, D.C.) - The Rainbow History Project formed November 4, 2000, .... came out of frustration at trying to identify archives and sources of information on gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgendered history in metropolitan Washington DC. ...The group's purpose has always been to preserve our community's memories. Among our highest priority initial projects was the capturing of community members' memories for an oral history project. Our mission is to collect, preserve, and promote an active knowledge of the history, arts, and culture relevant to sexually diverse communities in metropolitan Washington DC.
  • The Gay Peoples Union Collection -Based at the University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee, the primary materials in this collection offer access to the history of the first major gay rights activist group in the city.
  • The History Project (Boston, Massachusetts) - ” The History Project is an all-volunteer organization focused on several important initiatives: conducting research on lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgenders in Massachusetts , preserving the documentary record of that community's social and historical contributions, providing a forum for educating the general public. The History Project - established in 1980 by a group of historians, activists and archivists - is the only group focused exclusively on preserving the history of Boston’s LGBT community, and on making that history accessible to future generations.”

Subject Guide

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Robert Ridinger
268A Founders Memorial Library, Northern Illinois University, De Kalb, IL 6015-2868.