Missouri’s gay past

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Denim Vest and run pins from 1970. St Louis Riverfront Times | 14122

Steven Brawley’s collection of historical LGBT artifacts reaching back six decades is on display in St Louis, Missouri.

“The thing that’s weird is that when you live your life in secret, there’s not a lot of history that’s been recorded,” gallery owner Philip Hitchcock tells Daily RFT. “The story of the LGBT community tends to be one of moving from secrecy and shadows into the light, into saying, ‘Here we are.'”

Hitchcock admits some of the artifacts seem down-right ordinary. A friend recently asked why a 37-year-old St. Louis Pride T-shirt deserved a spot in the historical collection.

“She said, ‘My husband has shirts older than that,'” Hitchcock says. “But the difference is, everyone knows your husband has been [wearing] that. We’ve been in secret.”

SP

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