|Stonewall National Monument|
|Location||West Village, Manhattan, New York City|
|Area||7.7 acres (3.1 ha) near the intersection of Christopher Street and 7th Avenue South|
|Governing body||National Park Service|
|Website||Stonewall National Monument|
|Designated||June 28, 1999|
|Designated||February 16, 2000|
|Designated||June 24, 2016|
Stonewall National Monument is a 7.7-acre (3.1 ha) U.S. National Monument in the West Village neighborhood of Greenwich Village in Lower Manhattan, New York City. The designated area includes the 0.19-acre (0.077 ha) Christopher Park and the block of Christopher Street bordering the park, which is directly across the street from the Stonewall Inn—the site of the Stonewall riots of June 28, 1969, widely regarded as the start of the modern LGBT rights movement in the United States.
Stonewall National Monument is the first U.S. National Monument dedicated to LGBT rights and history. It received its National Monument designation on June 24, 2016.
Stonewall National Monument encompasses the 0.19-acre (0.077 ha) Christopher Park (also known as Christopher Street Park), a park originally built on a lot that New Netherland Director-General Wouter van Twiller settled as a tobacco farm from 1633 to 1638, when he died. The land was subsequently split up into three different farms. Trinity Church's and Elbert Herring's farms were located in the southern part of van Twiller's former farm, and Sir Peter Warren’s farm was located in the northern portion.
Because of the unusual street grid that already existed in much of Greenwich Village, the Commissioners' Plan of 1811 would not quite fit into the pre-existing street grid. This resulted in several blocks with oblique angles, as well as many triangular street blocks. The former farms of Christopher Street were split into small lots from 1789 to 1829. 37 After a subsequent large population increase in the early 19th century, the buildings on Christopher Street were dense with people. :37:
In 1835, the Great Fire of New York spread through the area and destroyed many city blocks. The little triangle of land bounded by Christopher, Grove, and 4th Streets, which was burned down, was condemned and turned into a park. 37 The new Christopher Street Park, designed by architects Calvert Vaux and Samuel Parsons Jr., was opened in 1837. :37 The Stonewall Inn, which then consisted simply of two adjacent stables, opened across Christopher Street in 1843. :35:
The widening of 7th Avenue South, and the construction of the IRT Broadway–Seventh Avenue Line of the New York City Subway, effectively split the neighborhood into two pieces, separated by the now-widened avenue. By the 1940s, the area had deteriorated somewhat as people moved away. 68–69 Meanwhile, the Stonewall Inn had changed uses; many different restaurants would be housed in the inn from the 1930s through 1966. :35During the 1950s, the social demographics changed as "Beat poets" moved into Greenwich Village. :
In 1966, the Stonewall Inn Restaurant—which had been located within the inn since the 1950s—closed for renovations due to a fire that devastated the space. The restaurant re-opened as a tavern on March 18, 1967, 183 The tavern was breaking rules on the sale of liquor, as it had no liquor license, but one officer of the New York City Police Department (NYPD) was reportedly accepting once-monthly bribes in exchange for allowing the tavern to go unlicensed. :35 :185 :68under ownership of the Genovese crime family of the Mafia. :
On June 27, 1969, the NYPD conducted a raid on the inn, now operating as a gay bar, because the inn did not have a liquor license. Riots started in the ensuing days, where thousands of rioters protested against the NYPD's raid. 35–36 The riots solidified the Stonewall Inn's status as a gay icon. The park also played a significant role in the riots—people had gathered at the park the morning after the first day of rioting, discussing the events of the previous day. :180:
The park itself was in dire need of renovation, so in the 1970s, the Friends of Christopher Park, which consisted entirely of volunteers mainly from the surrounding community, was created in order to oversee the park's upkeep. In 1983, NYC Parks embarked on a three-year, $130,000 project (equivalent to $337,792in 2020 ) to rebuild the park to its original condition. Architect Philip Winslow planted new greenery and replaced the park's benches, walkways, light fixtures, and gates.
In 1992, the Gay Liberation statue by George Segal was placed in Christopher Park, mirroring a near-identical statue at Stanford University.The statue consists of four white figures (two standing men and two seated women) positioned in "natural, easy" poses. Non-LGBT-related monuments in the park include two 1936 works that commemorated American Civil War fighters: a pole that honors the Fire Zouaves, as well as a statue made of bronze that honors Union general Philip Sheridan. The park is surrounded by a fence that dates back to at least the late 19th century.
Meanwhile, across the street, the Stonewall Inn had changed hands many times from 1969 to the 1990s, finally resuming the role of a gay bar by the 1990s. 36:
In 1999, David Carter, Andrew Dolkart, Gale Harris, and Jay Shockley researched and wrote the NRHP report for Stonewall, which was officially sponsored by the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation. When the listing was designated on June 29, 1999, it included the Stonewall Inn building, Christopher Park, and nearby streets.It became the nation's first NRHP listing, out of more than 70,000 listings at the time, dedicated exclusively to LGBT accomplishments. That same area was declared a National Historic Landmark on February 16, 2000.
On June 23, 2015, the Stonewall Inn became a New York City Landmark,making it the first city landmark to commemorate an LGBT icon. The designation prompted Greenwich Village residents to lobby for the inn and the adjacent park to be labeled a National Monument. Some members of Manhattan Community Board 2 wrote a letter to the National Park Service (NPS), which administers National Monuments, to request such a status for the Stonewall site. The GVSHP also supported a National Monument designation for the site. In 2016, The Trust for Public Land helped New York City prepare the property for transfer. The Trust for Public Land worked with the NPS and NYC Parks to preserve the Stonewall Inn and recast Christopher Park as the Stonewall National Monument.
On June 24, 2016, President Barack Obama officially designated the Stonewall National Monument, 7.7-acre (3.1 ha) area that includes the Stonewall Inn, Christopher Street Park, and the block of Christopher Street bordering the park. The National Park Foundation formed a new nonprofit organization to raise $2 million in funds for a ranger station, visitor center, community activities, and interpretive exhibits for the monument. In October 2017, a rainbow LGBT flag was raised on the monument, making it the first officially maintained LGBT flag at a federal monument.making it the United States' first National Monument designated for an LGBT historic site. The dedication ceremony was attended by New York City mayor Bill de Blasio; Senator Kirsten Gillibrand; Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell; and the Stonewall Inn's owners. Some attendees saw the dedication as important because the Orlando, Florida, nightclub shooting, which had occurred two weeks prior to the dedication, had claimed the lives of 49 people, many of them gay Latino Americans. The National Monument status encompasses a
Greenwich Village is a neighborhood on the west side of Lower Manhattan in New York City, bounded by 14th Street to the north, Broadway to the east, Houston Street to the south, and the Hudson River to the west. Greenwich Village also contains several subsections, including the West Village west of Seventh Avenue and the Meatpacking District in the northwest corner of Greenwich Village.
The Stonewall riots were a series of spontaneous demonstrations by members of the gay community in response to a police raid that began in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City. Patrons of the Stonewall, other Village lesbian and gay bars, and neighborhood street people fought back when the police became violent. The riots are widely considered a watershed event that transformed the gay liberation movement and the twentieth-century fight for LGBT rights in the United States.
The Stonewall Inn, often shortened to Stonewall, is a gay bar and recreational tavern in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Lower Manhattan, New York City, and the site of the Stonewall riots of 1969, which is widely considered to be the single most important event leading to the gay liberation movement and the modern fight for LGBT rights in the United States.
Christopher Street is a street in the West Village neighborhood of the New York City borough of Manhattan. It is the continuation of 9th Street west of Sixth Avenue.
The gay liberation movement is a social and political movement of the late 1960s through the mid-1980s that urged lesbians and gay men to engage in radical direct action, and to counter societal shame with gay pride. In the feminist spirit of the personal being political, the most basic form of activism was an emphasis on coming out to family, friends, and colleagues, and living life as an openly lesbian or gay person.
Marsha P. Johnson, born and also known as Malcolm Michaels Jr., was an American gay liberation activist and self-identified drag queen. Known as an outspoken advocate for gay rights, Johnson was one of the prominent figures in the Stonewall uprising of 1969.
Sylvia Rivera was an American gay liberation and transgender rights activist who was also a noted community worker in New York. Rivera, who identified as a drag queen, participated in demonstrations with the Gay Liberation Front.
The West Village is a neighborhood in the western section of the larger Greenwich Village neighborhood of Lower Manhattan, New York City.
New York City Pride March is an event celebrating the LGBTQ community; it is one of the largest annual Pride marches in the world, attracting tens of thousands of participants and millions of sidewalk spectators each June. The route of the Pride march through Lower Manhattan traverses south on Fifth Avenue, through Greenwich Village, passing the Stonewall National Monument, site of the June 1969 riots that launched the modern movement for LGBTQ+ rights. The March is among the largest components of NYC Pride, together with the Rally, PrideFest, and Pride Island events. The largest NYC Pride March to date coincided with the Stonewall 50 – WorldPride NYC 2019 festivities, commemorating the 50th anniversary of the riots at the Stonewall Inn, with 150,000 participants and five million visitors to Manhattan on Pride weekend; an estimated four million attended the parade.
Gay pride or LGBT pride is the promotion of the self-affirmation, dignity, equality, and increased visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people as a social group. Pride, as opposed to shame and social stigma, is the predominant outlook that bolsters most LGBT rights movements. Pride has lent its name to LGBT-themed organizations, institutes, foundations, book titles, periodicals, a cable TV station, and the Pride Library.
Julius' is a tavern in Manhattan's Greenwich Village neighborhood in New York City, located at 159 West 10th Street at Waverly Place. It is often called the oldest continuously operating gay bar in New York City. Its management, however, was actively unwilling to operate as such, and harassed gay customers until 1966.
Craig L. Rodwell was an American gay rights activist known for founding the Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookshop on November 24, 1967, the first bookstore devoted to gay and lesbian authors, and as the prime mover for the creation of the New York City pride demonstration. Rodwell is considered by some to be the leading gay rights activist in the early homophile movement of the 1960s.
The Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation (GVSHP) is a non-profit advocacy organization that opposes housing developments, supports restrictive zoning regulations and calls for preserving neighborhoods in Lower Manhattan, New York City, including Greenwich Village, the Far West Village, the Meatpacking District, the South Village, NoHo, and the East Village. In 2019, it was renamed Village Preservation. The organization has been characterized as a NIMBY group.
New York state, a state in the northeastern United States, has one of the largest and the most prominent LGBTQ populations in the world. Brian Silverman, the author of Frommer's New York City from $90 a Day, wrote that New York City has "one of the world's largest, loudest, and most powerful" LGBT communities", and "Gay and lesbian culture is as much a part of New York's basic identity as yellow cabs, high-rises, and Broadway theater". LGBT Americans in New York City constitute by significant margins the largest self-identifying lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities in the United States, and the 1969 Stonewall Riots in Greenwich Village are widely considered to be the genesis of the modern gay rights movement.
The Gay Liberation Monument is a monument featuring the sculpture Gay Liberation by American artist George Segal, located in Christopher Park along Christopher Street in the West Village section of Manhattan, New York. The monument was completed in 1980 and was notably the first piece of public art dedicated to gay rights and displaying solidarity for LGBT individuals, while simultaneously commemorating the ongoing struggles of the community. Located at the northern end of the park, the art installation commemorates the Stonewall riots; the monument was dedicated on June 23, 1992, and is part of the Stonewall National Monument. The sculpture itself features two pairs of life-like, life-size individuals made of bronze and painted white; the monument depicts a standing couple and a seated couple.
New York City has one of the largest LGBTQ populations in the world and the most prominent. Brian Silverman, the author of Frommer's New York City from $90 a Day, wrote the city has "one of the world's largest, loudest, and most powerful LGBT communities", and "Gay and lesbian culture is as much a part of New York's basic identity as yellow cabs, high-rise buildings, and Broadway theatre". LGBT Americans in New York City constitute by significant margins the largest self-identifying lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities in the United States, and the 1969 Stonewall riots in Greenwich Village are widely considered to be the genesis of the modern gay rights movement.
Stacy Marie Lentz is an American lesbian LGBT rights activist, and a co-owner of the Stonewall Inn, and co-founder of the Stonewall Inn Gives Back Initiative. Stonewall Inn is the birthplace of the modern gay rights movements after the 1969 Stonewall riots and forms part of the Stonewall National Monument.
The Queer Liberation March is an annual LGBT protest march in Manhattan organized by the Reclaim Pride Coalition as an alternative to the NYC Pride March.
Stonewall 50 – WorldPride NYC 2019 was a series of LGBTQ events and celebrations in June 2019, marking the 50th anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall riots. It was also the first time WorldPride was held in the United States. Held primarily in the metropolitan New York City area, the theme for the celebrations and educational events was "Millions of moments of Pride." The celebration was the largest LGBTQ event in history, with an official estimate of five million attending Pride weekend in Manhattan alone, including an estimated four million in attendance at the parade. The twelve-hour parade included 150,000 pre-registered participants among 695 groups.
Stonewall is an American opera about the 1969 Stonewall riots, the spark of the modern LGBTQ rights movement, which received its world premiere June 2019 in conjunction with Stonewall 50 – WorldPride NYC 2019, projected to be the world's largest LGBTQ event. Stonewall was commissioned by New York City Opera (NYCO), and features music by Iain Bell, libretto by Pulitzer Prize-winning Mark Campbell, and direction by Leonard Foglia. The production is a 2019 Pride Initiative of the NYCO, an annual production of an LGBT-focused work each June in commemoration of Gay Pride Month. The opera premieres in June 2019 at the Rose Theater at Jazz at Lincoln Center. The opera was produced to honor both the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, and the 75th anniversary of the NYCO. Stonewall is the first opera to feature a transgender character written for an openly transgender singer, mezzo-soprano Liz Bouk.
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