Crafting Your Experience

New YorkHistory
NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

Upper West Side LGBT Pride

This experience is sponsored, in part, by the generous support of American Express, Con Edison, and a Humanities New York Action Grant. The Upper West Side historically attracted an LGBT presence due to various factors, including once-affordable housing, its proximity to parks and Lincoln Center, and subway access. This experience provides a small selection of sites that include writer James Baldwin’s residence; the Ansonia, which once housed the legendary Continental Baths; the Dakota, once home to composer Leonard Bernstein, among others; and the long-time home of lesbian activist Joan Nestle, who, along with others founded and ran the Lesbian Herstory Archives here before its move to Brooklyn. This tour represents a selection of extant sites associated with LGBT history that are located within a small geographic area. As such, it does not represent the entire long LGBT history of New York City, nor does it entirely reflect the diversity of today’s LGBT community. This collection is limited to the research we have included on the project website so far. For more information or to suggest a site, please visit our website at www.nyclgbtsites.org.

  • 1.

    Fifth Avenue Bar

    Fifth Avenue Bar

    In 1953, the bar was involved in a 1953 court decision that affected the LGBT community.

  • 2.

    Lincoln Center: Damrosch Park

    Lincoln Center: Damrosch Park

    The outdoor space adjacent to Lincoln Center hosted the first-ever AIDS Walk New York beginning in 1986.

  • 3.

    Arturo Martin Garcia & Victor’s Café Mural

    Arturo Martin Garcia & Victor’s Café Mural

    A homoerotic bas-relief mural created in 1971 was the work of local Cuban-born artist.

  • 4.

    About the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

    About the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

    Learn about the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project

  • 5.

    Joan Nestle Residence

    Joan Nestle Residence

    From 1974 to 2002, residence of lesbian activist and co-founder of the Lesbian Herstory Archives.

  • 6.

    Aaron Copland Residence at the Hotel Empire

    Aaron Copland Residence at the Hotel Empire

    From 1936 to 1947, home of one of the most celebrated figures in classical music.

  • 7.

    Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

    Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts

    Performing arts center with connections to the LGBT community since its planning began in the mid-1950s.

  • 8.

    James Baldwin Residence

    James Baldwin Residence

    New York City residence of the literary icon and civil rights activist from 1965 until his death in 1987.

  • 9.

    Emma Stebbins & “Angel of the Waters”

    Emma Stebbins & “Angel of the Waters”

    This statue atop the Bethesda Fountain is the 1860s masterpiece of lesbian sculptor Emma Stebbins.

  • 10.

    Central Park

    Central Park

    Numerous associations with the LGBT community since its creation in 1857.

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