LGBT Oral History 112: Larry Thomas

Number of Pages: 
July 30, 2013

Larry Lee Thomas was born in Burnham, Pennsylvania in 1941, living there for at least 19 years before spending four years in the military, and shortly thereafter moving to the nearby city of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. After his first experience dating another man through a 20-year relationship, Larry now lives with his partner with whom he has spent 31 years. In this interview, Larry discusses his experiences as a self-identified gay man living in Harrisburg through the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s, when there was a prevalent stigma against LGBT people and few places to safely express one’s sexual orientation and meet others in the community. He also discloses his challenges of managing both personal and professional relationships by selectively deciding to come out or not within particular social circles. While he does not actively participate in LGBT activism, Larry admires the amount of freedom that he sees in the gay community today, while commenting that LGBT young people may be unaware of how difficult life was only a few decades ago.

Time Period: 
Gift of Larry Thomas
LGBT Oral History - Thomas, Larry - 112
Dickinson College Archives and Special Collections