Friday, January 15, 2010

The Stonewall Police Riot: Gay Rights 1969 (2)

(continued from Page 1)

Their arms linked, a row of helmeted policemen stretching across the width of the street made several sweeps up and down Christopher Street between the Avenue of the Americas and Seventh Avenue South. The crowd retreated before them, but many groups fled into the numerous small side streets and re-formed behind the police line. The police were not withdrawn until 4 A.M.

A number of people who did not retreat fast enough were pushed and shoved along, and at least two men were clubbed to the ground. Stones and bottles were thrown at the police lines, and the police twice broke ranks and charged into the crowd. Three persons were arrested on charges of harassment and disorderly conduct. The crowd had gathered in the evening across the street from the Stonewall Inn at 53 Christopher Street, where the police staged a raid early Saturday. The police were denounced by last night's crowd for allegedly harassing homo-sexuals. Graffiti on the boarded-up windows of the inn included: "Support gay power" and "Legalize gay bars."

Saturday's raid took place when about 200 people were in the bar. Plainclothes men, with a warrant authorizing a search for illegal sales of alcohol, confiscated cases of liquor and beer. A Melce involving about 400 youths ensued, a partial riot mobilization was ordered by Police Headquarters, and 13 persons were arrested on a number of Charges. Four policemen were injured, one suffering a broken wrist. Among those arrested was Dave Van Ronk, a folk singer.

PLEASE NOTE: For further information on the Stonewall Riot of 1969, and the Gay Rights Movement, I have enclosed the following website links, which are also found in

1."The Stonewall Riot and It's Aftermath": An online edition of Columbia University Library"
2."Milestones In The Gay Rights Movement"
3. Gay and Lesbian Studies at the New York Public Library.
4. The American Gay Rights Movement: A Timeline
5. Lesbian Gay Bisexual & Transgender Project
6. What Makes People Gay?
7. The Best and Worst Things About Being Gay.
8. is, for the first time, publishing nine pages of NYC Police Department records created early on the morning of the rebellion's start, June 28, 1969. Click Here.
9. The Gay Liberation Movement and How the Coming Out Model Began by Judith Faucette

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