About the Project
These notebooks, divided by state and city, outlined restaurants, bars, hotels, and other gathering places that were either gay or perhaps rumored to be friendly to lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) clientele, intentionally or not. They also includes additional comments. A typical entry might denote the type of business, its location (city, state, address) and dates that presumably someone had visited the place. He also notes establishments geared toward women. Much of Kameny’s code is indiscernible and three volumes are missing: volumes 1, 3, and 5. The Archives Center volumes include volume 1, covering the states Georgia-Missouri, and volume 4 covering Ohio-Tennessee.
In the 1950s Franklin Kameny, early gay civil rights activist and the co-founder of the Washington, D.C. chapter of the Mattachine Society, began keeping a series of notebooks detailing gay-friendly establishments throughout the United States.