Friday, February 27, 2009

Just a little Gay History for you

Five years ago, the Rainbow History Project began work to grant historic landmark status to Dr. Frank Kameny's home and office. That goal was realized yesterday when D.C.'s Historic Preservation Office granted that status.
The house, located at 5020 Cathedral Avenue NW, is the first LGBT historic landmark in the city.
Kameny came to the District to work for the Army Map Service in the late 1950s, and was fired for being gay, sparking his career as an activist. He, along with Jack Nichols, founded the Mattachine Society of Washington in 1961 and worked to overturn sodomy laws. In 1971, he became the first openly gay man to run for Congress, and later founded the Gay Activist Alliance of Washington, now known as the Gay and Lesbian Activist Alliance. Kameny is also credited with helping to eliminate homosexuality as a mental illness from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in the 1970s. The Library of Congress archived some of Kameny's papers in late 2006, and the Smithsonian put some of his picket signs and buttons on display in 2007.

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