LGBT Center of Central PA History Project Collections

The LGBT Center of Central PA and the Dickinson College Archives and Special Collections have partnered to document the stories and history of LGBT life and activism in Central PA. Below are guides to the collections of documents, images, and artifacts that have been donated to the LGBT History Project as part of this effort.

Research assistance is available by e-mail (archives@dickinson.edu), telephone (717-245-1399), and on-site. Visitors are welcome Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4 pm, and on Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6 to 9 pm when classes are in session. Malinda Triller Doran, Special Collections Librarian, is Dickinson’s liaison to this project. It is recommended that you contact Malinda in advance of a site visit.

Members of the Pennsylvania Rural Gay Caucus with their hand-made banner at the Philadelphia gay pride parade circa 1976. Photo by Bari Lee Weaver. Sam Deetz on Gay Education Day in Harrisburg, wearing Pink Triangle button, March 1976.  Photo by Bari Lee Weaver. Issues of the Lavender Letter newsletter (Harrisburg, PA) from 1998. Fan button for the Harrisburg Hustlers volleyball team. Shadows bar (Harrisburg, PA) t-shirt. Letter sent to Joe Burns in 1969 from the Mattachine Society of New York in an attempt to establish a gay activist organization in the Lehigh Valley area.  Materials documenting activism in Lancaster, PA.
Sam Deetz with Pink Triangle pin, 1976
1975-1976

These materials were donated by Sam Deetz, founder of Susquehanna Valley Gays United in Northumberland, PA in 1976. The scrapbook contains newspaper clippings documenting gay rights issues and activism primarily in the Sunbury, PA area from 1975-1976. This collection also includes Deetz’s appointment letter to the Governor’s Council for Sexual Minorities in 1976 and photographs of Deetz and...

LGBT-012 documents
1991-2009

This collection was donated anonymously by an individual associated with the Metropolitan Community Church (MCC) of the Spirit in Harrisburg, PA.  The collection is composed primarily of newspapers clippings that document issues such as same–sex marriage, the relationship between local churches and LGBTQ individuals, LGBTQ activism, and discrimination against LGBTQ...

LGBT-013 documents
circa 1996-1997

This collection reflects Eric Selvey’s involvement with the Crossroads Magazine as editor and publisher, and with the Lily White and Company drag troupe, based in Harrisburg, PA.  

Buttons
1978-2012

These materials were donated by Barry Loveland in 2014. The bulk of the collection consists of buttons, ribbons, and t-shirts from events.  It also contains documentation of the Gay and Lesbian Switchboard of Harrisburg, as well as theatre and musical performances in Central PA and New York City. 

LGBT-015 documents
1974-2015

This collection is comprised primarily of newspaper clippings from a wide variety of publications, not limited to Central PA, addressing issues related to marriage, clergy, politics, discrimination, and the military.  This collection also contains bookmarks, postcards, and greeting cards with gay themes.  In addition, the collection includes a small amount of material related to Dignity of...

LGBT-016 documents
1985-1991

This collection contains a run of the Advocate magazine from April 16, 1985 to May 21, 1991. It also includes a 1991 Gay and Lesbian Switchboard guide to Central PA and a gay trivia game.    

LGBT-017 documents
1990-1992

This collection of material reflects Thomas Pfeiffer’s involvement in the Lily White and Company drag troupe in Harrisburg, PA and The Pennsmen Inc., a group of LGBT people with a common interest in the leather/fetish lifestyle.  The Marie Antoinette gown was worn by Thomas Pfeiffer during the Aug. 16, 1992 performance of A Hystery of the World According to Lily. The chain harness...

1993 March on Washington t-shirt and flag
1993, 2000

This collection contains t-shirts and flags from the 1993 March on Washington and the 2000 Millennium March on Washington. 

Location: LGBT-018

Subject: LGBT History, Social Reform and Advocacy

Format: Artifacts and Objects

Time Period: 1980-1999, 2000-2019

Collection Inventory: LGBT_018_Vath,GeraldG.pdf

LGBT-019 document
1978-1985

These materials document the holy union of Nancy Datres and Riitta Lukkari.  They also contain  court documents and a photograph dealing with harassment Datres and Lukkari experienced from their neighbors. 

LGBT-021 documents
1990-present

The LGBT Center of Central PA, housed in Harrisburg, PA, provides services, programs, and community space for the LGBT community in the region.  These materials represent these initiatives, including the Common Roads program for youth and young adults, its predecessor BiGLYAH, and FAB (Fall Achievement Benefit).  This collection also contains materials regarding the founding of the Center,...

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