1970 - 1985

Pride March: The Early Years

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center

A visual history of NYC's Pride March from 1970 to 1985.

In June 1969, members of the LGBT community stood up to police during a routine raid of Stonewall, a gay bar on Christopher Street in New York City. The ensuing Stonewall riots gave birth to the modern LGBT movement and, one year later, to New York’s first Gay Pride March. This gallery features images and video of Pride Marches held between 1970 and 1985. Assembled from our various archive collections, they capture both the rapid growth of the Pride movement, and illustrate the spirit, diversity and concerns of the LGBT community.

The inaugural March, organized by the Christopher Street Liberation Day Committee, drew 2,000 participants and spectators. Last year’s march drew a massive crowd of 1.8 million.

As LGBT groups won battles and took on new challenges, the March reflected the community’s evolving priorities. Anti-gay legislation was condemned. AIDS support and funding were demanded. And the struggles for gays to openly serve in the military, and for marriage equality, were fought.

Forty-five years after Stonewall, the Pride March continues to be a critical platform for articulating and amplifying LGBT movement messages. 
Credits: All media
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