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Memorial Hall Library

LGBTQ History Makers

June is Pride Month, when we celebrate the accomplishments of the LGBTQ community. The month of June was chosen to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Riots, which are generally considered the beginning of the modern LGBTQ civil rights movement. Here are biographies and memoirs about 10 LGBTQ people who made history in one way or another.

Alan Turing : the enigma
Alan Turing : the enigma
by Andrew Hodges

Explores the life of the mathematician, reveals the character of the man behind such concepts as the universal machine and the scientific understanding of the mind, and discusses his pioneering role in electronic computer design.
An underground life : memoirs of a gay Jew in Nazi Berlin
An underground life : memoirs of a gay Jew in Nazi Berlin
by Gad Beck

That a Jew living in Nazi Berlin survived the Holocaust at all is surprising. That he was a homosexual and a teenage leader in the resistance and yet survived is amazing. But that he endured the ongoing horror with an open heart, with love and without vitriol, and has written about it so beautifully is truly miraculous. This is Gad Beck’s story.
The mayor of Castro Street : the life & times of Harvey Milk
The mayor of Castro Street : the life & times of Harvey Milk
by Randy Shilts

A biography of Harvey Milk, the first openly gay city official in the nation, recounts his public and personal life, and examines the emergence of the San Francisco gay community as a social and political force.
Secret historian : the life and times of Samuel Steward, professor, tattoo artist, and sexual renegade
Secret historian : the life and times of Samuel Steward, professor, tattoo artist, and sexual renegade
by Justin Spring

A dramatic account based on previously unseen journals and records reveals the mid-20th-century writer's hidden sexual life, marked by relationships with famous contemporaries and the identities he created as Phil Sparrow and Phil Andros to conduct his research.
James Baldwin : a biography
James Baldwin : a biography
by David Adams Leeming

Provides an incisive look inside the complex life of the twentieth-century's most influential black writer, discussing his extraordinary literary works, his homosexuality, and his struggle against white society's denial of African-American identity.
Stonewall : breaking out in the fight for gay rights
Stonewall : breaking out in the fight for gay rights
by Ann Bausum

The award-winning author of Marching to the Mountaintop presents a history of gay tolerance that traces the progression of civil rights for gay citizens and identifies the prejudices and misconceptions that have criminalized homosexual relationships.
David Bowie made me gay : 100 years of LGBT music
David Bowie made me gay : 100 years of LGBT music
by Darryl W. Bullock

Explores the influence of LGBT musicians on music history, including David Bowie, Elton John, and Freddie Mercury.
Seriously-- I'm kidding
Seriously-- I'm kidding
by Ellen DeGeneres

The stand-up comedian, television host, best-selling author and actress candidly discusses her personal life, her professional career and describes what it was like to become a judge on American Idol.
Being Jazz : my life as a (transgender teen)
Being Jazz : my life as a (transgender teen)
by Jazz Jennings

The author recounts how her public experiences have influenced her attitude towards the transgender community, as she works to educate others about transgenderism while navigating the challenges of being a teenager.
Surpassing certainty : what my twenties taught me
Surpassing certainty : what my twenties taught me
by Janet Mock

The transgender activist and best-selling author of Redefining Realness presents a memoir of her search for purpose, love and self-realization in an early adulthood marked by her education at the University of Hawaii, a defining relationship and her entry into journalism.