Preserving the History of Pride in New York City

Pride Month

June is the month of Pride, full of festivity, parades, celebrations and more, with its roots based in decades of revolutionary times. As a mainstay of the movement, many such sculptures, monuments, and landmarks are preserved in New York City.

Alice Austen House


Alice Austen House
Former residence of and now museum for photographer Alice Austen's work. She photographed friends who challenged traditional gender norms, which allowed the site to become a National LGBT Historic Site.

Audre Lorde's House

Home of New York State Poet Laureate and civil rights activist Audre Lorde and her partner Frances Clayton, who stood for the intersection between the black female identity, feminism, and civil rights. Now, Lorde's House is designated a New York City landmark.

Gay Activist Alliance Firehouse
A nondescript spot in New York City and now a landmark, this Neo-Greco structure was the headquarters of the Gay Activist Alliance in the early 1970s.

Gay Liberation

Gay Liberation
The sculpture stands the test of time. The Parks Department says the 2 men and 2 women are "specific, evocative, and understated, showing the public comfort and freedom to which the gay liberation movement aspired." This monument by George Segal can be viewed across from The Stonewall Inn. 

Christopher Street Pier

Hudson River Piers
The Hudson River Piers were rapidly constructed in the nineteenth century boom of industrial maritime trade, and by the 1970s, '80s, and '90s as trade ports moved elsewhere, the piers received no upkeep and gradually degraded. These ruins became a site for queer/LGBTQ+ youth to 'cruise,' or have sexual encounters, as well as a relatively safe space for queer individuals to exist, relax, and connect with the community. The piers were historically a site of queer expression, acceptance, culture, and art, including sculptural art installations, wall art, photography, and more. Due to the piers' architectural state of ruin, the city of New York either demolished or renovated them. The Christopher Street Pier, found by just across West 10th street, is one such renovated pier that retains symbolic and tangible value for contemporary LGBTQ+ individuals.

James Baldwin Residence
Now a New York City landmark, this is the home of James Baldwin, a civil rights activist and author. His book Giovanni’s Room is deeply controversial and showcased homosexuality and interracial relationships in the 1950s.

Leslie Lohman Museum

Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art
Founder Charles Leslie also has an apartment in Manhattan that’s full of homoerotic art, dubbed the "Phallus Palace", but this is the first museum in the world dedicated to LGBTQ+ art, with more than 24,000 pieces from 1,900 LGBTQ+ artists.

 

NYC Aids Memorial


New York City Aids Memorial
Located in St. Vincent’s Triangle, the New York City AIDS Memorial was dedicated and unveiled on World AIDS Day in 2016. Located across from the St. Vincent’s Hospital which has the 2nd dedicated AIDS ward in the country since 1984, the memorial is a tribute to New Yorkers who were affected by and lost their lives to AIDS.

Pyramid Club

Pyramid Club
Rupaul's first show in NYC took place in 1979 at this East Village club. This makes it the it-spot spot for politically-conscious drag performance art.

The Stonewall Inn

 

Stonewall Inn
Touted as 'where pride began,' history is imprinted with the raids that took place in 1969 and spear headed the gay rights movement in the US. The Stonewall Inn is a significant official New York City cultural landmark, symbolic of the LGBTQ+ origins.


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