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LA’s Black Cat Bar To Be Designated A Historic Cultural Monument

Jim Burroway

September 21st, 2008

Our essay last January 1 about a riot that was sparked when police saw men kissing at the stroke of midnight on New Years Day has had an impact. I’ve just received word from Wes Joe that the Black Cat bar, the scene of the 1966/67 riot which birthed a renaissance of the gay rights movement in Los Angeles, has passed an important hurdle in becoming a City Historic Cultural Monument:

Hi, happy to report that on Thursday the LA Cultural Heritage Commission approved designation of the Black Cat as a City Historic Cultural Monument.  An important hurdle since they’re picky — the other 2 applications up that morning were denied.

Next step is a City Council Committee, then the full Council.  Hopefully not a big deal since we have the strong support of the City Council President.

Thanks again for The Temerity of a Kiss, which really helped motivate us to do this.

An aside, noticed the button in today’s piece on Frank Kameny.  In doing the research at the ONE archives I came across a cover of Tangents magazine covered with buttons.  Couldn’t resist putting that in the application material.  On Thursday one of the persons giving testimony, Alexei Romanoff, had owned the bar down the street from the Black Cat that was also raided New Year’s morning 1967.  Showed him the page and he remarked that he had over 700 such buttons.

Thanks again!  Wes

Thank you Wes for helping to preserve an important cultural landmark.

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