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Issues of Queer Archives
That gay and lesbian history even exists has been a contested fact, and the struggle to record and preserve it is exacerbated by the invisibility that often surrounds intimate life, especially sexuality. Even the relatively short history (roughly “one hundred years”) of homosexuality as an identity category has created the historiographical challenge of not only documenting the wide varieties of homosexual experience but examining documents of homophobia along with earlier histories of homoeroticism and same-sex relations.
Ann Cvetkovich in An Archive of Feelings: Trauma, Sexuality, and Lesbian Public Cultures, p. 242
Queer Archives & Primary Source Collections
Some of the archives listed below have portions of their collections digitized and available online for researchers. Material that has not been digitized is usually available in person. Contact the reference archivists at these institutions for research help and/or for use of materials in research projects.
The Lesbian and Gay Archives Roundtable of the Society of American Archivists has also compiled the Lavender Legacies Guide, a comprehensive list of LGBTQ collections in the United States and Canada. Click here for the full Lavender Legacies Guide.
ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives
ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at the USC Libraries is the largest repository of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer (LGBTQ) materials in the world. Founded in 1952, ONE Archives currently houses over two million archival items including periodicals, books, film, video and audio recordings, photographs, artworks, organizational records, and personal papers. A small subset of this collection has been digitized and is available online
Lesbian Herstory Archives
The Lesbian Herstory Archives (in Brooklyn, NYC), founded 1975, is home to the world's largest collection of materials by and about lesbians and their communities.
Northeastern University Archives - Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Collections
Northeastern University has an extensive LGBTQ collection, includng records and other materials from ACTUP Boston, Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus, Boston Alliance of Gay and Lesbian Youth, Inc., and many other organizations.
New York Public Library LGBT and HIV/AIDS Activist Collections
Several thousand digitized items from the 1960s-90s documenting the generations of activists in the United States that fought for civil rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people, and struggled against societal stigma to end the AIDS crisis. The collection consists of photographs documenting key activists, organizations, and protests, as well as posters, ephemera, and artwork.
A digitization project (supported by Wellesley!) of the independent alternative press of the 60s, 70s and 80s. Select "LGBT" to see issues of journals, magazines, and literary magazines created by and for an LGBT audience. Use the box that says, "search within results" to find specific issues with your search terms.
, American Studies
, Cinema & Media Studies
, Cognitive & Linguistic Sciences
, Comparative Literature
, East Asian Languages & Cultures
, East Asian Studies
, German & German Cultural Studies
, Italian Studies
, Latin American Studies
, Russian & Russian Area Studies