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Three Monuments That Recall LGBTQ+ History or Honor Our Dead

Three Monuments That Recall LGBTQ+ History

These spaces both honor and memorialize our past and those we've lost.

Washington, D.C. The Dr. Franklin E. Kameny Residence (below) is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. The monument preserves the home of Kameny (1925-2011), who played a landmark role in the early days of the LGBTQ+ civil rights movements. A World War II veteran who was fired from his job with the Army Map Service in 1957 for refusing to answer questions about his sexual orientation, Kameny fought the termination in court, taking the case all the way to the Supreme Court. Although the high court refused to review it, Kameny’s tenacity and activism set the stage for federal employment protections and helped reverse the medical community’s view of homosexuality as a mental disorder.


The Dr. Franklin E. Kameny Residence


New York City Designed to honor the more than 100,000 New Yorkers who have died of AIDS, the New York City AIDS Memorial (below) also acknowledges the contributions of caregivers and activists who mobilized networks of care in the face of an indifferent social system. The 18-foot steel canopy sits on a triangular site that was part of the former St. Vincent’s Hospital campus, home to the city’s first AIDS ward, in Greenwich Village.


New York City AIDS Memorial


St. Louis The butterfly-winged sculpture in New York City’s Tribeca Park honoring trans and nonbinary people may have been a temporary installation, but the beautiful Transgender Memorial Garden in St. Louis (below) is a permanent memorial to transgender people killed by anti-LGBTQ+ violence. It was designed by Monte Abbott, a Missouri master gardener who chose specific trees and plants as allegories of the trans experience, picking rare, overlooked, and aesthetically unconventional flora.


The Dr. Franklin E. Kameny Residence


This article originally ran in the Winter 2022 issue of Out Traveler, which is available on the newsstand nowIt was initially titled Three More Monuments, and was part of our special feature on outsider travelers.

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