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1970s

Early 1970s

  • The LGBT community is credited for with populating and rehabbing the Central West End, Lafayette Square, and other "gayborhoods."

1970

  • Dr. Laud Humphrey's Tea Room Trade is published and features controversial research conducted in St. Louis' Forest Park.
  • On Aug. 10, 1970 in St. Louis, Rita Hauser, the U.S. Representative for the the United Nations' Human Rights Commission, said that laws banning marriages between persons of the same sex were unconstitutional.
  • Washington University Researcher Kathye Gentry co-publishes an article in the American Journal of Psychiatry (Feb. 1970) "Homosexuality III: Psychiatric Disorders and Disability in the Male Homosexual.
  • Mandrake Society holds its first "ball" and begins publishing a newsletter.
  • Singer/Songwriter Josh Zuckerman born in St. Louis.
  • Gay Liberation Front is founded by Washington University students, would dissolve within a year.

1971

  • Masters and Johnson of St. Louis conduct research that says young men who are predominately or exclusively homosexual generally have lower levels of male testosterone in their blood when compared to young hetrosexual men.

1972

  • Sex, Inc. begins performing their comedy/drag shows in St. Louis.
  • St. Louis' Lesbian Alliance forms, opening a coffee house, publishing a newsletter, and offering community activities.
  • Gay Patrol is founded with a focus on protecting gays from attacks in city parks.
  • Theo Thomas creates the" Powder Puff Revue." The African American female impersonation group would peform for a fee at area clubs and private events for several years.

1973

  • Gateway MC is founded.
  • On October 28, 1973 Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) of St. Louis holds its first services.
  • Moonstorm magazine begins publishing.
  • The first Miss Gay Missouri pageant is held at the Machinist's Hall in Bridgeton, Mo. This winner is Julie Tomorrow who performed "The Best Thing You've Ever Done" - by Barbra Streisand.
  • A "gay parade" is held that runs from the Red Bull Bar in East St. Louis, through downtown St. Louis, and ending at to the "Cannon" in Forest Park.

1974

  • Jill Johnston, author of Lesbian Nation, speaks at Washington University.
  • Herbies' bar opens in the Central West End.
  • Tomato Productions films a documentary about two lesbian inmates at Missouri's Tipton Women's Prison.
  • Missouri lawmakers draft legislation that would brand homosexuality as a disease requiring gays and lesbians to report themselves to state health clinics. The bill fails.
  • Students for Gay Liberation at Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville hold a diverse series of activities for Gay Awareness Week April 29-May 3

1975

  • Blue Max MC is founded.
  • St. Louis Women's Collective becomes active.
  • A lesbian focused conference is held at Washington University (Fall 1975)
  • Primetime begins publishing.
  • St. Louis' first gay community center opens as a secular spinoff of St. Louis' MCC. The Midcontinent (Metropolitan) Life Services Corporation featured meeting/recreation space, a newsletter (PrimeTme), and a hotline.

1976

  • The St. Louis Globe Democrat reports on an internal St. Louis Police Dept. investigation concerning a gay shakedown scheme that targeted gay men arrested in Forest Park.
  • St. Louis MCC host a "Gay Rally." Further research needed.

1977

  • St. Louis' PFLAG chapter is founded.
  • Gay St. Louis (formerly Primetime) begins publishing.
  • St. Louis Task Force for Gay Rights is formed by Rick Garcia and others. Host a fundraiser to fight the "Save Our Children" campaign that was waged by Anita Bryant in Florida. Garcia's organization arranged a benefit screening of the movie A Very Natural Thing at the Maplewood Theatre that was attended by 1,000 people.
  • The "second" St. Louis Gay Rally is held at St. Louis' MCC, just two days after the Dade County vote.

1978

  • St. Louis' first Gay Hotline begins taking calls.
  • Gay Life magazine begins publishing.
  • Musician Michael Stipe graduates from Collinsville High School.
  • The 1978 Miss Gay America Pageant is held in St. Louis.
  • A Gay Pride week is held in Columbia, Missouri, with many St. Louisans participating.

1979

  • Growing American Youth is founded.
  • Mor or Les bar firebombed.
  • First St. Louis Mardi Gras held.
  • On July 28, 1979, the St. Louis Globe Democrat reports on an "Inquiry into Police Action at Gay Bar."
  • St. Louis' Masters and Johnson reports they in some cases can "cure" homosexuality (specifically the unfulfilled desire by some to function as hetrosexuals) after two weeks of intensive therapy. Featured in the April 23, 1979 issue of Time Magazine.
  • KADI radio begins to air "Gay Talk" program.
  • Washington University hosts a weekend of Gay-related workshops and lectures.

Copyright Steven L. Brawley, 2007-2015. All Rights Reserved.