Crime Doesn’t Pay

I have always loved giving public talks. I love the challenge of writing a compelling narrative, and I love the rush of energy I get from an attentive audience who is usually pleased, sometimes even thrilled, to learn something new about queer history.

Occasionally someone approaches me after a presentation with a story to share. Just such a thing happened this past week. I participated in a student-organized panel for Queer History Month and shared stories about researching same-sex marriage in the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s. Afterwards Ron Dutton, a local archivist of the gay past, approached me.

“I didn’t know you were working on marriage,” he said. “Have you seen the 1957 story that ran in TAB magazine about a gay male wedding that got busted by the police?”

“No,” I said, all ears. “Tell me more.”

“I can’t remember the details, but I have a copy of it in my collection.”

Today I went to Ron’s home, part of which is converted into a massive archive that holds over one million items. Here is the one he shared with me:

click for larger

originally from elisechenier@dreamdwidth, crossposted to outlawstoinlaws@dreamwidth, a community for sharing and discussing same-sex marriage before 1980.

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