Search the Special Collections and Archives Portal

Las Vegas, Nevada LGBTQ Collection (MS-00251)

Abstract

The Las Vegas, Nevada Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) Collection documents the social and political activities of Las Vegas, Nevada's LGBTQ community from 1955 to 2016. The collection includes hundreds of newspaper articles about LGBTQ issues, ranging from AIDS to Nevada legislation. The collection also documents the presence of the LGBTQ community in Las Vegas, including material from gay bars, nightclubs, social clubs, advocacy and political organizations, entertainers, and student groups.

Previously known as the Las Vegas Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Collection.

Finding Aid PDF
Date
1955 to 2016
bulk 1980 to 2012
Extent
13.32 Cubic Feet (15 boxes and 3 oversized boxes)
12.78 Linear Feet
249 digital_files (0.988 GB) JPG, MP4
Resource Type
Collection
Related People/Corporations
Access Note

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Materials in this collection may be protected by copyrights and other rights. See

xlink:title="Reproductions and Use"> Reproductions and Use

on the UNLV Special Collections and Archives website for more information about reproductions and permissions to publish.

Collection Type
Scope and Contents Note

The Las Vegas, Nevada Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) Collection documents the LGBTQ community's social and political activities in Las Vegas, Nevada from 1955 to 2016. The collection includes newspaper articles on AIDS, homophobia, LGBTQ events and clubs, sexual assault, education, equal rights movements, prostitution, religious reactions and outreach, legislation, drag shows, pornography, transsexuality, and various LGBTQ bars and restaurants. The collection also includes fliers for LGBTQ entertainment, public health outreach, and political organizations.

In addition, the collection contains copies of several LGBTQ newspapers and newsletters, including Bohemian Bugle (1986-1990), The Directory (1984), Nevada Gay Times (1983-1984), and Vegas Gay Times (1978-1981). Also included are public health reports, conference programs, educational literature, official proclamations, and documents from several political advocacy groups including Nevadans for Human Rights, Human Rights Campaign, Lambda Legal, the Lesbian and Gay Academic Union, and Las Vegas Pride.

Previously known as the Las Vegas Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Collection.

Biographical / Historical Note

In 1861, the Nevada Territory legislative assembly passed a law punishing "the infamous crime against nature," sodomy. The statute, not repealed until 1993, was broadly enforced across the state and created an atmosphere of fear and repression that prevented the development of an active LGBTQ community until the 1970s. Today, the Las Vegas Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) community exists as an essential element of the Las Vegas, Nevada social, political, and economic environment, supporting and promoting the development and well-being of its members and allies. The community's entertainment and nightclub scene, active social and community organizations, and political advocacy groups inform, entertain, and work to protect and encourage LGBTQ individuals and groups often marginalized by larger society.

Source:

McBride, Dennis. Out of the Neon Closet: Queer Community in the Silver State. North Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2016.

Arrangement

These records are organized into two series:

Series I. Alphabetical subject files, 1955-1997;

Series II. Additional accessions, 1970s-2016.

Related Collections

Dennis McBride Collection on LGBTQ Las Vegas, Nevada 1993-2017. MS-00802. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Dennis McBride LGBTQ Poster and Sign Collection, 1984-2012. MS-00842. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Reno Gay Rodeo Collection, 1977-1988. MS-00503. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Lee Plotkin Papers, 1955-2006. MS-00518. Special Collections and Archives, UNLV Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Rodney Sumpter Papers on Doe v. Bryan, 1985-1986. MS-00411. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Repeal of Nevada's Anti-Sodomy Law, 1899-1993. MS-00726. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Gay Business Directories Collection, 1992-2015. MS-00750. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Las Vegas Bugle Collection on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender History, 1984-2002. MS-00476. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Preferred Citation

Las Vegas, Nevada LGBTQ Collection, 1955-2016. MS-00251. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

EAD ID
US::NvLN::MS00251
Acquisition Note

Materials were donated in 1985, 2001, and 2017 by Dennis McBride; accession numbers 1985-121, 2001-23, and 2017-164. Multiple unnumbered donations between 1985 and 1997 have also been added to the collection.

Processing Note

Materials were processed by Dennis McBride in 1985. In 2014, as part of a legacy finding aid conversion project, Lindsay Oden revised and enhanced the collection description to bring it into compliance with current professional standards. Subsequently Lindsay Oden entered the data into ArchivesSpace. In 2019, as part of an archival backlog elimination project, Melise Leech added additional material from later accessions and revised the collection description to bring it into compliance with current professional standards. In 2022, Sarah Jones added the 2022 accession to the collection (box 17).

Finding Aid Description Rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
English