The stories, experiences, and history of LGBTQ people have often been suppressed in society. However, despite hundreds of years of oppression, the community has managed to mobilize, fight for equal rights, and usher in a new era that includes greater acceptance and inclusion.
Now, The American LGBTQ+ Museum is set to open in New York City and will be located inside an expansion of the New York Historical Society on the city’s Upper West Side. While the physical museum isn’t set to open until 2024, online programming is already underway.
The museum will showcase LGBTQ+ history, as well as New York’s unique and important role in many of the community’s most pivotal moments, like Stonewall and the AIDS crisis. Permanent and rotating exhibits will display historical artifacts, recount first-hand stories, and allow for community events and shows. The museum promises to be “vibrant”, “welcoming” and “interactive”.
While the physical space won’t open for another few years, online programming is already underway. The museum recently hosted their first event, “Radical Tenderness”, which was a digital exhibition of portraits of trans people from around the country. The American LGBTQ+ Museum plans to continue hosting online events until their physical space opens.
In an interview with NBC News, Richard Burns, the Board Chair of the museum, stated, “We need to record and present the history of our movement and the lives of LGBTQ people, and showcase both the discrimination and suffering of vulnerable people, but also their resilience, grit, and determination to achieve equality, freedom, and liberation”.