Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Archive

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About the Collection

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) Archive at UNT is a collaborative project to document the history and culture of the LGBTQ communities in the South and the Southwest. This major collecting initiative involves working with community partners to collection documentation of people, places, and events through primary source materials, including letters, photographs, newspapers and magazines, scrapbooks, diaries, audio-visual materials, organizational records, posters, flyers, and objects.

Most current scholarship on LGBTQ history is based upon the stories of large LGBTQ communities in cities like New York and San Francisco. Meanwhile, the stories of Southern and Southwestern LGBTQ communities are mostly unheard. The experience of LGBTQ people in Texas and the Southwest has not been explored with the same emphasis that scholars have placed on other communities, partially because of the lack of adequate resources for humanities scholars to use and interpret. Texas hold the fourth largest LGBTQ population in the U.S. Documenting and preserving the history of the regional LGBTQ community is critical for comprehensive understanding on this topic.

Notable Collections

Resource Center LGBT Collection

The Resource Center Collection was the initial acquisition to the LGBTQ Archive, and is the largest collection of LGBTQ history in north Texas, with over 600 linear feet of materials. The Collection documents significant people, organizations and events such as the Circle of Friends, the first Dallas Pride Parade, the Dallas Buyer’s Club, Baker v. Wade, the Gay Urban Truth Squad, Dallas Gay Alliance and much more. The Collection contains many collections of personal papers including those of John Thomas, Don Baker and Karen Estes, as well as organizational records for Resource Center publications from the Phil Johnson Library. Portions of the Resource Center LGBT Collection have been digitized and can be viewed on The Portal to Texas History.

The Dallas Way Collections

The Dallas Way is a north Texas based organization with a mission to collect and preserve LGBTQ history. Through a partnership with UNT, The Dallas Way Collections at UNT contain on-going project records, oral histories, and relevant historical materials collected by members of The Dallas Way. The Dallas Way has contributed numerous collections to the LGBTQ Archive including the Dennis Vercher Collection, Louise Young and Vivienne Armstrong Papers, Texas Stonewall Democratic Caucus Papers, The Dallas Gay Alliance Collection, The Donald F. Baker Collection, The Lory Masters Collection, The Barbara Rosenberg Papers, and the Linda Jebavy Mitchell Collection.

Many collections from The Dallas Way have already been digitized, and the rest are scheduled for digitization. You can find collections from The Dallas Way on The Portal to Texas History.

Dallas Independent Volleyball Association Collection

DIVA, or Dallas Independent Volleyball Association, is an LGBT organization brought together with the intent of playing volleyball at both amateur and more experienced levels. The organization started in 1989 when a group of friends from Oak Lawn began developing it into the larger group it is today. Beginning originally with only six teams in 1989, the group is now comprised of 54 teams, with a membership of about 400 individuals. Materials in the Collection include t-shirts, banners, flyers, photographs and documents related to events of the organization such as fundraisers and tournaments, as well as some organizational records.

Dallas Metroplex Chapter of the NAMES Project Foundation Collection

The Dallas Chapter of the NAMES Project coordinated the display of the AIDS Memorial Quilt in Dallas, and created workshops for the Dallas community to create quilt panels to memorialize their loved ones lost to HIV/AIDS. The Collection contains a photo archive of panels contributed to the National AIDS Memorial Quilt and the organizational records of the local committee. Digitized materials from the DMC of the NAMES Project Foundation Collection can be found on The Portal to Texas History.

The Dallas Voice Newspaper Collection

The Dallas Voice is a weekly LGBT newspaper which has been in continuous publication since 1984. The archive contains every print edition of the paper ever published, as well as digital editions from 2005 to the present. The full run of the Dallas Voice has been digitized and can be found on The Portal to Texas History.

Elizabeth “Betty” Fairchild Papers

Betty Fairchild wrote one of the first books for parents of gay children and was a founding member of P-FLAG chapters in Denver and Washington, D.C. Her collection contains her journals, photos, and correspondence.

Charles C. Francis Papers

The Charles C. Francis Papers include documentation on the politics of gay rights during George W. Bush’s presidential election and first four years of the Bush administration. Areas covered include protests by the Log Cabin Republicans during the Texas Republican Convention in 1998, the Austin 12 meeting on April 13, 2000, the Bush campaign’s initial outreach to gay Republicans and the creation of the Republican Unity Coalition (RUC). Some materials from the Charles C. Francis Papers have been digitized and can be found on The Portal to Texas History.

Lone Star Ride Collection

The Lone Star Ride Fighting AIDS (2001-2013) was an event that took place in Dallas-Fort Worth in September of every year, in order to raise funds for AIDS awareness, services, and research. The Lone Star Ride was formed from the Tanqueray’s Texas AIDS Ride (1999-2000) through efforts from Larry Townsend, Janie Bush, Mike McKay, and Don Maison. Funding for the Tanqueray's AIDS Ride became increasingly difficult due to the nature of the bike course (Dallas to Houston), so the Lone Star Ride was created with cyclist riding more manageable distances across Dallas and Fort Worth. The Collection contains documentation of the rides and their planning with video, documents, and photographs. Digital materials from the Lone Star Ride Collection can be viewed on The Portal to Texas History.

David Taffet Collection

David Taffet is a Senior Staff Writer for the Dallas Voice, an LGBTQ newspaper. He began writing for the Dallas Voice in 1989, and began hosting Lambda Weekly, an LGBTQ radio show on KNON 89.3, in 1990. The David Taffet Collection contains items and documents related to the Dallas-Fort Worth LGBTQ community, such as materials related to Pride Parades, t-shirts, press releases, court case documents, and other legal documents regarding LGBTQ matters.