Weird or Wonderful?

This past week I met with Vancouver’s queer seniors writing collective Quirk-e to talk about a draft of an article I recently completed with the title: “Freak Wedding! Marriage as Postwar Lesbian Pleasure Practice.” The article was inspired by the headline of a 1957 tabloid story about a butch and fem lesbian wedding in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The question I ask in the article is … Continue reading Weird or Wonderful?

Father Robert Clement’s Holy Union

Last week I wrote about Troy Perry, founder of the Metropolitan Community Church. At the same time Perry was building his church in Los Angeles, Father Robert Clement, an ordained priest of the Old Catholic Church of America, was building his congregation in New York City. Also like Perry, Clement was an out and proud gay man. He famously participated in the June 1970 Stonewall march … Continue reading Father Robert Clement’s Holy Union

Troy Perry and the Metropolitan Community Church

In the summer of 2011 I rode my motorcycle around the U.S. in search of pre-1980 evidence of same-sex marriage for my book Outlaws to In-Laws. I made stops at queer and lesbian and gay archives in Boston, New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Caption: Me and Troy Perry. While in L.A. I met up with Troy Perry, founder of the Metropolitan Community Church … Continue reading Troy Perry and the Metropolitan Community Church

Crime Doesn’t Pay

I have always loved giving public talks. I love the challenge of writing a compelling narrative, and I love the rush of energy I get from an attentive audience who is usually pleased, sometimes even thrilled, to learn something new about queer history. Occasionally someone approaches me after a presentation with a story to share. Just such a thing happened this past week. I participated … Continue reading Crime Doesn’t Pay

FREAK WEDDING! BRIDEGROOM IS A GIRL

[click for larger] The headline says it all. In the 1950s, lesbians were “freaks.” This was especially true of butch women who adopted a masculine working-class style. Their style alone communicated volumes: I will not conform to society’s rules; I will not be a “proper” woman; I am a sexually desiring being, and my desire is directed toward women, especially feminine women.
 When I first … Continue reading FREAK WEDDING! BRIDEGROOM IS A GIRL