9 Historic LGBTQ+ Sites of New York

Discover the history of the movement through these landmark locations

By Google Arts & Culture

Stonewall Living Monument

LGBTQ+ rights and freedoms were hard won in the Western world, and the fight goes on. Across the city of New York there are many historic sites which resonate with the ongoing movement.

The house of Audre Lord

Audre Lord was a self-described "black, lesbian, mother, warrior, poet," who dedicated her life to social justice. In June 2019, Lorde was one of the inaugural fifty American "pioneers, trailblazers, and heroes" inducted on the National LGBTQ Wall of Honor.

The house of James Baldwin

The writer and activist James Baldwin lived in this refurbished townhouse from 1965 until his death in 1987. His essays, as collected in his 1955 Notes of a Native Son, explore the complexities of racial, sexual, and class divisions in American society.

The Stonewall Inn

Police raids of LGBT venues were common in the 20th Century. In the early hours of June 28, 1969, the NYPD attempted to arrest a number of patrons of the Stonewall Inn. A large crowd gathered outside to defend the bar, and fought back against the policemen.

First Christopher Street Liberation Day March, 1970 (1970-06-28) by Leonard FinkThe Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center

In 1970, the first anniversary of the riot was celebrated by LGBT people with the Christopher Street Liberation Day March. To this day, many cities around the world hold LGBT marches around this date.

Gay Activists Alliance Firestation

The GAA was founded in December 1969, some six months after the Stonewall Riot, by dissident members of the Gay Liberation Front. The Firehouse was their headquarters from 1971 until it was burned in an arson attack in 1974.

Women’s Liberation Center

The Center was founded in the early 1970s, and served as a meeting place for radical feminists and lesbian groups until 1987. The Center also hosted the Lesbian Switchboard, a counseling and events information telephone service.

Liberation House

In 1972, Leonard Ebreo and Alice Bloch co-founded Liberation House to provide health and information services to the LGBT community. It was also the first home of the influential Gay Men’s Health Project and the Gay Switchboard.

The Center

New York City’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center, known as The Center, has occupied this building since December 1984. Today The Center provides social, cultural, wellness and health-based programming to support the LGBTQ community in New York City.

Founded in 1991 to encourage and facilitate the reading and research of LGBT literature, the Pat Parker/Vito Russo Center Library is named in honor of individuals who championed LGBT causes in their professional and personal lives.

The Ramrod

By the 1970s, Christopher Street and the wider Greenwich Village area had become the center of New York's LGBT social and cultural life. Overlooking the Hudson, The Ramrod was one of New York's most popular leather bars.

West St. Bars ’77, Badlands, Ramrod, Kellers, Sneakers, West Street North & South of Christopher St. (38) by Leonard FinkThe Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center

Leonard Fink, then an unknown photographer, took these pictures of the Ramrod's patrons.

West Street Bars ’80 / Badlands / RamRod by Leonard FinkThe Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center

In 1980, The Ramrod was the site of one of Greenwich Village's most notoriously homophobic crimes, when a former police officer shot into the bar, killing two men and wounding six others.

The Christopher Street Pier

Over the road from The Ramrod, the dilapidated piers along the Greenwich Village waterfront had long been a cruising spot for gay men. Over time, they became a space for the wider queer community. Murals, photography, performances and music were made here.

Interior of Stonewall Inn (2019-03-06) by CyArkCyArk

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The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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