January 2022

 

In 2020, ONE Archives began a project to process and preserve nine of its highest priority collections documenting LGBTQ communities in California. Several of these collections are now available to the public for research thanks to a generous grant from the California State Library, as well as additional support from the ONE Archives Foundation.

These collections were all selected to be part of this project because of their importance to California's LGBTQ history, particularly in Southern California and the Los Angeles area. Each collection covered by this project reflects facets of the LGBTQ community, whether it be activism, art, religion, companionship, support, or aid. The collections all center around the creation of space for different aspects of the LGBTQ community, bringing visibility and accessibility to lesser-known stories while also focusing on the larger portrait of California's diverse history.

Four collections are fully processed and their finding aids are now online for viewing, including the Lee Glaze Papers, the Oedipus Motorcycle Club Records, the Kent Garvey Photographs, and the Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing Records.

  • Lee Glaze was an artist, activist, bar manager, and prominent figure in the early years of the Los Angeles gay rights movement. His papers contain photographs, records, correspondence, ephemera, and audiovisual materials.
  • The Oedipus Motorcycle Club is a gay motorcycle club founded in Los Angeles in 1958. It is the second oldest gay motorcycle club in Los Angeles and one of the oldest still existing today. The collection documents club events such as motorcycle runs, anniversary celebrations, fundraisers, officer ceremonies, gay pride festivities, and other events.
  • The Kent Garvey photograph collection is made up of slides, contact sheets, negatives, photographic prints, and papers, circa 1970-2000, from photojournalist Kent Garvey, whose photographs appeared in gay and lesbian newspapers such as The Advocate and Update.
  • Gay and Lesbian Elder Housing is a non-profit organization in Los Angeles, California, and one of the first organizations dedicated to developing and maintaining affordable housing for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) seniors. The collection includes materials documenting the development, construction, and opening of the apartment complex for LGBT seniors in Hollywood, known as Triangle Square.

Two additional collections, the Avatar Club Los Angeles Records and the Troy Perry Papers, are processed and available for research, and the finding aids will be online soon. Anyone interested in the collections can contact ONE Archives for additional information.

  • Founded in 1983, Avatar Club LA is an organization dedicated to providing information and education about safe, sane, and consensual bondage, discipline, kinky, and sadomasochistic (BDSM) sex within the gay community. Members attend educational sessions, demonstrations, and social events with the club.
  • Reverend Troy Perry is the founder and leader of the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), which was created specifically to minister to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities and provide them a safe space to worship. Reverend Perry is also a staunch activist for LGBTQ rights, anti-discrimination, marriage equality, and HIV/AIDS healthcare.

In the coming months, two other collections, the LA LGBT Center and the Center for Sex and Culture, will be available for research.  In addition, hundreds of photographs from the Kent Garvey collection (see slideshow below for a sneak peak), as well as archival film footage from the Harold Call collection will soon be available on the USC Digital Library.  We will keep you posted as more materials become available to the public, so stay tuned.

 

Image (above): Photo by Kent Garvey, March on Sacramento, 1988, Kent Garvey Photographs, Coll2012-043.