Where are our central archives and a museum for LGBT?

Have we a definitive Archive?


The LGBT society is diverse in more ways that the obvious; but for most of us our history is passing us by and no one is recording it for the future in a cohesive way.

A number of organisations/groups have collected or put together archives, e.g.





Others which are held in the London School of Economics (http://www2.lse.ac.uk/library/archive/holdings/lesbian_and_gay_archives.aspx ).  Then there is LAGNA (Lesbian and Gay Newsmedia Archive) which is based at The Bishopsgate Institute in the City of London (http://www.lagna.org.uk/ )


The National Archives – Gay and Lesbian History (http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/records/research-guides/gay-lesbian.htm )


Plymouth LGBT Archive – (http://plymlgbtarchive.org.uk/ )


The BBC Archive (http://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/gay_rights/ )


The British Library which holds some Manchester LGBT publications, such as complete sets of Mancunian Gay, 1981-1986, Gay Life, 1986- and Scene Out, 1989- – but to find out more you will have to search on the website

I am positive the list goes on, indeed I have just read an interesting article by Ed Madden ‘The Irish Queer Archive: Institutionalisation and Historical Narrative’ (http://lgbtialms2012.blogspot.co.uk/2012/07/ed-madden-irish-queer-archive.html#more )

It refers to the National Library of Ireland officially accepting the Irish Queer Archive into its care. I think the speech delivered by Colm Toibin states clearly the benefits of this move, “This establishes that an understanding of our history, the history of gay women and men’s struggle for liberation, is as essential in understanding contemporary Ireland as the history of the women’s movement, or the labour movement, or the Fianna Fáil party” (28).  The transfer made it clear, he said, that the National Library “understands the importance of our story as part of the national story”

I am certain that numerous studies by learned people are being undertaken into LGBT history both in Ireland and Great Britain, but wouldn’t it be much more informative and useful to have a properly constructed museum for our history with a developed set of programmes that we can all visit. Even better would be to have our own museum which is able to develop a traveling exhibition so that we are no longer treated as second class citizens.


What do you think? 

Write and let us know now!

Other archive lists:

  1. http://archiveshub.ac.uk/search/search.html