LGBTQI History

Title page to Garrard Conley's workbook from the gay-conversion camp Love in Action

Smithsonian Voices

The History of 'Getting the Gay Out'

Conversion therapy made being different dangerous

Queer artist Gilbert Baker preserved this 10- by 28-foot section of an original 1978 pride flag.

LGBTQ+ Pride

Long-Lost Fragment of First Rainbow Pride Flag Resurfaces After Four Decades

The brilliantly colored banner—now on view in San Francisco—flew on "Gay Freedom Day" in 1978

Picket signs carried by protestors at the White House and Independence Hall in Philadelphia,1960s

Smithsonian Voices

The Most Radical Thing About Stonewall Wasn't the Uprising

Much of the staying power of Stonewall’s reputation rests upon the Pride marches that began on the first anniversary a year later

Miscellaneous objects from the museum’s collection that feature rainbows, including “That’s So Gay!” trivia game, coasters, and flags promoting marriage equality and immigration equality

Smithsonian Voices

Where Did the Rainbow Flag Come From, Anyway?

The mid-20th century was a time of vibrant social change and activism, with rainbows providing potent political symbolism for unity and diversity

This month's book picks include The Engagement, How the Word Is Passed and Drunk.

Books of the Month

The Fight to Legalize Gay Marriage, the Woman Who Couldn't Be Silenced and Other New Books to Read

These June releases elevate overlooked stories and offer insights on oft-discussed topics

Art historian Philip Mould identified this miniature, previously thought to be a likeness of Sir Walter Raleigh, as a portrait of Henry III of France.

Cool Finds

Petite Portrait of Henry III, King Who Challenged Sexual Norms in 16th-Century France, Discovered

Art dealer Philip Mould purchased the miniature "sight unseen" during lockdown. Now, he's offering it to the Louvre Museum in Paris

Two filmmakers launched a nationwide fundraiser to help save the surviving bars.

LGBTQ+ Pride

The Rise and Fall of America's Lesbian Bars

Only 15 nightlife spaces dedicated to queer and gay women remain in the United States

Learn about the underbelly of your neighborhood supermarket, 100-plus uses for beans and more in this year's top food books.

Holiday Gift Guide

The Ten Best Books About Food of 2020

From cookbooks to grocery-store exposés, these new books will tempt palates and fuel curiosity

This photo, like some others in the collection, was taken in a photo booth, eliminating the need for a photographer.

Newly Published Portraits Document a Century of Gay Men's Relationships

"Loving" features around 300 photos that offer an intimate look at men's love between the 1850s and 1950s

Users can zoom in on different sections of the quilt or search for specific panels by inputting names and keywords.

You Can Now Explore All 48,000 Panels of the AIDS Memorial Quilt Online

The commemorative quilt weighs 54 tons and spans 1.2 million square feet

LGBTQ+ Pride

LGBTQ+ Pride at the Smithsonian

Read our newest stories about LGBTQ+ arts, culture and history, as well as a list of events around the Smithsonian related to Pride

"Project Pride," a virtual concert and “time capsule,” will celebrate LGBTQ history, heritage and culture through musical performances, conversations and highlights from the Smithsonian Institution’s collections.

How to Watch the Smithsonian Pride Alliance's Free Virtual Concert

Catch "Project Pride," featuring performances by Tig Notaro, Rufus Wainwright and Big Freedia, on YouTube this Sunday at 8 p.m. Eastern time

Larry Kramer by Robert Giard, gelatin silver print, 1989

Playwright and AIDS Activist Larry Kramer Dies at 84

The American writer and public health advocate was "a lionhearted force," says Smithsonian curator Katherine Ott

Mapping the Gay Guides’ main function is preserving and publicizing an overlooked, under-studied chapter in LGBTQ history.

This Interactive Map Visualizes the Queer Geography of 20th-Century America

Mapping the Gay Guides visualizes local queer spaces' evolution between 1965 and 1980

By the time of his arrest in 1953, Rustin was profoundly committed to non-violent resistance.

Gay Civil Rights Leader Bayard Rustin Posthumously Pardoned in California

The openly gay Rustin was convicted during the 1950s under laws targeting LGBTQ individuals

John Addington Symonds, whose 1873 essay "A Problem in Greek Ethics" helped lay the foundation for the modern gay rights movement

Cool Finds

Researchers Recover an Early Copy of a 19th-Century Gay Rights Essay

This once-lost copy of "A Problem in Greek Ethics" is only the sixth of its kind

Photographer Charles Marville captured this snapshot of an open-air urinal with three stalls in 1865.

How Paris' Open-Air Urinals Changed a City—and Helped Dismantle the Nazi Regime

During World War II, the stalls served as rendezvous points for French Resistance fighters

Detail of portrait of President James Buchanan by artist George Peter Alexander Healy

The 175-Year History of Speculating About President James Buchanan's Bachelorhood

Was his close friendship with William Rufus King just that, or was it evidence that he was the nation's first gay chief executive?

LGBTQ Women Who Made History

Drag queen in Atlanta, 1972

LGBTQ+ Pride

The Stonewall of the South That History Forgot

A month after the riots in New York, a raid on an Atlanta movie theater sparked a gay liberation movement of its own