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An Uprising, A Movement: Celebrating the Stonewall Rebellion

Credit: By Rhododendrites – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,


Fifty-one years ago yesterday, police in New York City raided a bar in Greenwich Village well known for serving LBGTQ+ patrons. As noted by the Library of Congress’s Today in History entry for Stonewall, “[in New York state,] it was illegal to serve alcohol to a gay person until 1966, and in 1969, homosexuality was still considered a criminal offense. This led many gay establishments to operate sans liquor license, providing an open door for raids and police brutality.” It was not the first time police had harassed patrons at the Stonewall Innpolice routinely raided the bar; sometimes they would make arrests or they’d simply turn up to intimidate people and demand pay-offs in return for not publicly releasing patron names or giving out code violation citations.

This particular raid would make an indelible mark in history.

Rather than leaving as they were dismissed, patrons and locals from the neighborhood angrily stood outside. And as the police arrested thirteen of the staff and customers, the crowd became incensed at the rough treatment. They’d had enough. They pelted the police with pennies and debris, and minutes later hundreds of people began rioting.

That night sparked five more days of rioting, involving thousands of people and it became a pivotal event for LBGTQ+ people, an inspiration to stand up and demand equal rights. In 2016, the Stonewall Inn and close surroundings were designated a National Monument, the first such monument commemorating the history of the LGBTQ+ rights movement.

As we conclude Pride Month, we celebrate those in the LBGTQ+ community who rose up, that night and in the many decades afterward, to be heard and be seen.

We noted in an earlier blog post that it is more important than ever to remember the significant contributions of LGBTQ+ people of color this year as Pride Month overlaps with the ongoing Black Lives Matter protests. GLAAD’s statement earlier this month declared, “It is important to remember that the revolutionary riots at Stonewall in 1969 were spearheaded by many LGBTQ people of color, and that none of the progress made for the acceptance and equality of LGBTQ people over the past 51 years would be possible if not for the action and courage of those protestors. … There can be no Pride if it is not intersectional.“

If you want to learn more about the Stonewall Uprising, delve into the many resources that Falvey Memorial Library has to offer.

If you want to catch up on Falvey’s Pride Month coverage, check out our additional Pride Month coverage:


Shawn ProctorShawn Proctor, MFA, is communications and marketing program manager at Falvey Memorial Library.


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New Resources for LGBTQ Research: LGBT Magazine Archive and LGBTQ Thought and Culture

LGBTQ Resources ScreenshotThe library has recently purchased access to two essential LGBTQ+ research resources: Alexander Street’s LGBT Thought and Culture and Proquest’s LGBT Magazine archive. These new additions will greatly bolster the University’s LGBTQ+ research resources and help fill important gaps in our LGBTQ+ and Gender and Women’s Studies collections.

LGBT Thought and Culture provides coverage of the essential works and archival documents of the global LGBTQ+ movement. It includes the Pat Rocco and Jeanne Cordova collections, which contain speeches, correspondences, and ephemeral from these important LGBTQ+ activists. The collection also includes the Magnus Hirshfeld collection, which includes professional correspondence, confidential reports, and court documents from the renowned early 20th century sex researcher.

The collection includes a huge array of limiters including subject heading, archival collections, and media-type, allowing researchers to hone in on very specific aspects of LGBTQ+ culture. Whenever possible the resource includes a high definition direct scan of the source material with a sidebar table of contents for the scanned resource.

The LGBT Magazine Archive feature full coverage of 26 of the most influential LGBTQ+ magazine and newspapers. This archive also includes, for the first time, the entire run of the Advocate from its inception in 1967 to the present. The ProQuest interface allows researchers to search all the tiles simultaneously or restrict their searching to a specific title or titles. A place of publication limiter also allows researchers to search by region.

Both resources will provide researchers with long overdue access to a huge store of LGBTQ+ primary resources.

For any research-related questions regarding LGBTQ+ or gender studies, contact Susan Turkel,  the Sociology & Criminology, Global Interdisciplinary Studies, and Gender & Women’s Studies librarian.

Rob LeBlanc is First year Experience Librarian at Falvey Library.

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Last Modified: November 12, 2019