Watkins Museum celebrating Pride Month with LGBT-themed exhibits, presentations

photo by: Journal-World File Photo

A gay pride flag whips in the wind as marchers prepare for a march down Massachusetts Street in this file photo from April 23, 2005.

The Watkins Museum of History on Tuesday announced exhibits and talks scheduled throughout June in honor of Pride Month.

Two new exhibits chronicle efforts in Lawrence and Kansas City to create more equitable communities for LGBT people. One of the displays, a traveling exhibit titled “Making History: Kansas City and the Rise of Gay Rights,” highlights the pioneering work of KC-area LGBT communities in the fight for acceptance and equal rights in the years before the landmark 1969 Stonewall riots in New York City. Ruminating on the questions about the origins of change and how history is made, the exhibit was designed by faculty, students and staff at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Also on view this month is “Simply Equal: The Fight for LGBT Equality in Lawrence,” an exhibit designed by Watkins staff. “Simply Equal” traces the ongoing story of local groups that have worked to make Lawrence an “LGBT-friendly place,” among them the Gay Liberation Front and Simply Equal, as well as national milestones in the gay rights movement.

Both exhibits will be displayed on the museum’s third floor through July 15.

On June 21, the Watkins Museum will host a talk titled “Equality for All: LGBT History at the Watkins.” Kathy Rose-Mockry, of KU’s Emily Taylor Center for Women and Gender Equity, will discuss the Lawrence Gay Liberation Front at 6 p.m., followed by a presentation from Mike Silverman, activist and LGBT heritage collector, on his extensive collection of activist materials recently donated to the Watkins.

For more information on Pride Month at the museum, visit watkinsmuseum.org.


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