Long before the historic 1969 Stonewall Riots — a violent clash with police outside a New York City gay bar widely seen as a turning point in the LGBT liberation movement — Milwaukee’s LGBT community was already seeing its own revolution.
In fact, Milwaukee had a well-established gay scene, home to at least 33 known bars scattered around the city. It was a number matched only by major cities like New York and San Francisco, according to local author Michail Takach, whose new book, LGBT Milwaukee, hit shelves this week.
The book pieces together the evolution of the LGBT community — especially the gay bar — in Milwaukee, going all the way back to its roots in the 1930s.
He joined me in studio to share highlights form his research and to explain the significance of the gay bar as a “safe space” in the local community.
Click the player below to listen in.
To all of those elders who are still with us today, no one knows what that courage looks like.
No one needs that courage today.
- Michail Takach
The book is available at local retailer Boswell Books or through Arcadia Publishing. It is also on Amazon.com and other online retailers.
All proceeds from the sale of the book will benefit Milwaukee Pride, with the intent of establishing “year-round local LGBTQ history education programs,” Takach said.
To promote the book, Takach will be at Boswell Books for a book signing and talkback event on Thursday, Aug. 25. More details available here.