April 2, 2021: A new online database - Mapping the Gay Guides - offers researchers a fun resource to delve into the Damron “Guides” Address Books, an early but longstanding travel guide aimed at gay men since the early 1960s.
Similar in function to the green books used by African Americans during the Jim Crow era to help identify businesses that catered to black clients in the South, Damron aided a generation of queer people to identity sites of community, pleasure, and politics.
By associating geographical coordinates with each location mentioned within Damron, the new database provides an interface for visualizing the growth of queer spaces between 1965 and 1980. Many Missouri and St. Louis LGBTQIA+ spaces are listed in the easy to use database. Select "Missouri" in the drop down search bar on the left side of the website (link below).
Source: Mapping the Gay Guides, Amanda Regan and Eric Gonzaba, (2019-)