July 18, 2016: The Project is thrilled to have contributed to the Route 66 exhibit at the Missouri History Museum. Check out the LGBT travel guides on display supplied by the Project. The fact that guides like this were needed for people of color, the Jewish faith, and gays and lesbians tells of discrimination and necessary underground networks. Kudos to Sharon Smith for curating this amazing exhibit! Do you have any travel guides or other LGBT artifacts to donate to the Project? Let us know.
By Ian Darnell
July 3, 2016: The St. Louis LGBT History Project thanks Cameron Kinker for donating a copy of his undergraduate senior thesis. Kinler’s thesis is titled “Contextualizing Transgender Health Care: Meanings, Experiences, and Future Hopes of Trans Adults in the St. Louis, MO Region.” The thesis was based on interviews with fifteen transgender individuals and includes transcripts of these interviews. Kinker’s work offers an informative snapshot of what it is like to be trans in St. Louis today, and it is likely to become a valuable historical document in the years to come.
Kinker was a student in the Department of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Washington University. He gradudated in May 2016.
Do you have documents, objects, or photographs that help tell the story of the transgender community in the St. Louis region? Please consider sharing them with the St. Louis LGBT History Project.
May 30, 2016: The Project is busy preparing for 2016 Pride events. Please plan to catch up with us at these various activities. Throughout the month, the Project will be posting updates about our latest research and unveiling some amazing new donated artifacts.
- Saturday, June 4, 1 pm. Free historic walking tour of the Central West End. RSVP for directions and more information.>>
- Thursday, June 9, 7 pm. Steven Louis Brawley will discuss his new book Gay and Lesbian St. Louis at the Missouri History Musuem.
- Saturday, June 18. The Project will offer a display at this year's St. Charles Pride.
- Saturday, June 25. The Project will offer a display at Tower Grove Pride.
- Sunday, June 26. The Project will offer a series of presentations at this year's St. Louis Pride. at 2:30 pm by the Library. NOTE: The Project will not have an exhibit this year due to construction at Soliders Memorial.
- During June: LGBT history exhibit at Olin Library, Washington University campus.
- Donate: Celebrate Pride by making a donation to support the Project. Thanks.
By Sharon Cortelyou
April 12, 2016: One year ago, after consulting with the women who run the Old Lesbian Oral Herstory Project (OLOHP), we began an oral history project to document Betty Neeley's life story. OLOHP began in 1997 when Arden Eversmeyer started working with women she knew who were ill and dying in Houston, Texas. She then began collecting stories from friends in Texas and across the nation.
And now, she and others are working to collect the life stories from lesbians age 70 and older wherever they are found, and whenever they are willing to share them. The project provides digital recorders and over the course of the spring and summer of 2015, myself and others conducted multiple interviews with Betty.
Present for our four interviews with Betty were Carol Seithel, Carolyn Niethe, Donna Welling and Betty's partner, Cindy Walsh. Each interview was loaded on to a computer and sent to OLOHP. These digital recordings were then turned over to OLOHP's professional transcribers.
We received a copy of the transcript and reviewed for accuracy and errors. We also provided footnotes on several important memories. We digitally scanned a number of Betty's photos and memorabilia to send to the Project team.
The final product, a nicely bound book, was presented to Betty on April 3, 2016 at Lilly's Music and Social House during a special "Herstory Brunch." Copies will also go to the Archives at Smith College, OLOHP, and the St. Louis LGBT History Project. Thanks to everyone for making this happen. We are planning to conduct additional St. Louis lesbian oral histories in the near future. Stay tuned.