Lavender Legacies Guide: United States: Maine

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USM Special Collections
Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Collection
Jean Byers Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine
Special Collections
University of Southern Maine
Address: LGBT Collection
Sampson Center
Special Collections
Glickman Family Library
University of Southern Maine
P.O. Box 9300
Portland, ME 04104-9301
Contact: Susie R. Bock, Head of Special Collections and Director of the Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine
Julie Cismoski, Special Collections Assistant
Kristin D. Morris, Special Collections Technical Services Librarian
Albert Howard, Honorary Curator of Printed Books

History: The LGBT collection is part of The University of Southern Maine’s Jean Byers Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine, which collects material documenting the ongoing histories of diverse communities. The Center promotes diversity and civil rights through research, education, and outreach.
The meetings which led to the creation of what was first named the Gay and Lesbian Archives took place in the spring of 1997, under the leadership of Mark Lapping, then provost of the University of Southern Maine. Individuals from the University and the general community worked closely together on the early planning and development, with faculty, staff, and students taking major responsibilities. Among the first donations, in 1998, were the records of ACT UP/Maine and ACT UP/Portland, and the papers of William D. Barry and Frances W. Peabody. Other collections soon followed.
Mission statement: The mission of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Collection is to provide a repository for the collection and preservation of a variety of records documenting Maine’s lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, and transgender people; to emphasize the importance of such material; and to arrange and describe this material, making it available to scholars, teachers, students of all ages, and the general public.

Current Holdings: Size and Content: And see below.

Collection Growth: The LGBT Collection actively collects materials from individuals and organizations which embody or illuminate the history of the community in Maine. The Collection contains a variety of print, manuscript, and three-dimensional materials. The majority of the Collection is paper-based, including manuscripts, books, magazines, posters, and photographs; there are also popular culture materials, such as political buttons and tee shirts.

Access and Use: All collections are open to use by researchers and the general public, with the exception of any restricted materials. Reader registration is required, as well as agreeing to abide by our Use Policy. Open hours are Mon, Wed, Thu 1-5 pm, or an appointment may be made for another day/time by calling (207) 780-4269 or sending an email to Glickman Library is fully accessible.

Reference assistance on site
Telephone reference
Internet reference (e-mail/web)
Copying services
Audiovisual facilities
Exhibitions Loan agreements for exhibits

Indices to the collections: Collections with a call number have finding aids which provide History, Description, and Box/Folder list. Finding aids are not yet available online, but electronic files will be emailed upon request.

Updating Collection Descriptions: Collection descriptions posted online are updated periodically, no announcement is currently made.

Collection Descriptions, LGBT Collection, University of Southern Maine
ACTUP/Maine Archives LG MS 12
ACTUP/Maine, founded in 1990, was a chapter of the national organization, ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) that focused on AIDS issues. The goals of the organization were the empowerment of people with AIDS and the establishment of an AIDS Resource Center. The organization emphasized direct action in communities and an open democratic process within the group. The Archives holds organizational papers, books, photos, promotional materials, correspondence and publications, plus a significant number of publications/papers from ACT-UP chapters in the US and abroad. The bulk of the material spans the years 1990-1994, and there is a good deal of undated material. 1976-1994 3.75 ft.

ACTUP/Portland Archives LG MS 9
ACT UP/Portland, established in the 1990s, was a chapter of the national organization, ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) that focused on AIDS issues. ACT UP/Portland sponsored several local youth organizations, had a cooperative partnership with Public Health agencies, leafleted extensively, and held media campaigns. The organization emphasized direct action in communities and an open democratic process within the group. The Archives consists of administrative files, programs/activities, and resource materials from the group and its affiliates. Dates range from 1984 to 1996, with the bulk of materials either undated or 1991-1996. 1984-1996 3.25 ft.

AM CHOFSHI was a social group for LGBT Jews and their families and friends in Maine. The Archives contains organizational records of the group. 1988-2002 4 ft.

Tom Antonik Papers
Tom Antonik is known locally as an artist, photographer, and as an HIV/AIDS activist-educator and public speaker who has lived with AIDS since 1988. He has worked with OUTRIGHT and is involved with the Friends communities in Maine, serving on the Board of Woolman Hill Quaker Retreat Center from 2004-2006. During his childhood, Antonik moved often, as his father served in the U.S. Air Force, spending time in Florida, Bangor, ME, and France, among other locations. As a young man in the 1980s, he lived in New York City for eight or nine years, before returning to Maine. An exhibition of his work – Seeing/Being Seen: Selections from Tom Antonik’s Photographs, Artwork, and Memorabilia – was held at the University of Southern Maine Glickman Library in 2006. The Papers consist primarily of his photographs, mounted and unmounted, with t-shirts and other textiles, personal papers, newspapers and other publications, and some artifacts. 21.5 ft.

William D. Barry and Frances W. Peabody Papers LG MS 2
William Barry is a well-known, published local historian. Frannie Peabody was an early Maine AIDS activist, who established the Peabody House, a center dedicated to assisting individuals living with HIV/AIDS. The Papers contain research materials gathered for the writing of the book, "The AIDS Project : a history." They include correspondence, clippings, photographs, publications, research notes, drafts, and documents from Maine’s largest AIDS service organization. 1974-1997 4.5 ft.

David P. Becker Papers
David P. Becker is a philanthropist who primarily worked with the LGBT community in the Northeast. The Papers document Becker's philanthropic work. 11 ft.

Alan Bernstein Collection
Alan Bernstein was among the earliest gay men to come out in Maine. The Collection contains gay newsletters and conference notices, primarily from the United States. 2000s 0.5 ft.

Larry Bliss Collection
Lawrence (Larry) Bliss was born and raised in California, but has lived in Maine for the past twenty years. He holds Bachelor’s Degrees in History and Political Science from the University of California, and a Master's Degree in Urban Public Administration, also from the University of California. He has worked as a middle school and high school teacher and coach and as Director of Career Services and Professional Life Development at the University of Southern Maine. He currently serves in the Maine Senate, representing the 7th district, which includes his hometown of South Portland, as well as Cape Elizabeth and part of Scarborough. He was elected to the Senate in 2008, having previously spent eight years representing South Portland’s 24th district in the Maine House of Representatives. Bliss has been a member of the Board of Directors of The AIDS Project, the Equity Institute of Maine, the South Portland Citizens for Justice, and the Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance, where he served as Treasurer from 1992-94. He is an advisor to the Equity Fund of the Maine Community Foundation and is a longtime member of the Surfrider Foundation, the Friends of Casco Bay, and the Portland Harbor Museum. Bliss and his partner, Nolan McCoy, have three children. The Collection includes materials related to Bliss’s work in support of the LGBT community in Maine. In particular, there are materials related to events and organizations with which he was involved, including the Maine Lesbian and Gay Men’s Symposium (materials for the years 1976-77, 1979-81, 1983-88, and 1991); Equal Protection Portland; South Portland Citizens for Justice; the Matlovich Society; Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance; Citizens for a United Portland; and the Spring for Life Art Auction. Materials include press clippings, correspondence, financial records, internal memos and meeting minutes, brochures, posters, event programs, stickers, buttons, a mug, and other papers. Some material related to efforts to secure same sex partner benefits for University of Maine employees and L.D. 246 (1993 An Act to Prevent Discrimination) is also present. 4 ft.

Ted Bohn Papers
Ted Bohn was active in the Portland LGBT community in the 1970s. The Papers contain Maine Gay Task Force newsletters and issues of Mainely Gay from 1976-1980, some marked "Office Copy" and with interior markups; one brochure from 1979 National March on Washington for Lesbian & Gay Rights; one t-shirt with lambda superimposed on an outline of the state of Maine. 1976-1980, undated 0.5 ft.

Ryan Conrad Collection
Ryan Conrad is a radical queer activist. He is co-founder of Naughty North, an inter-generational radical queer/trans direct action collective in Maine. He participates as a volunteer, board member, and/or advisor for a number of community organizing groups, including EquityFund (board member 2008-present), Outright Lewiston/Auburn (Special Projects Coordinator and volunteer advisor, 2006-present), Maine HIV Prevention Community Planning Group (2009-present), and Maine Video Activist Network (co-founder and volunteer, 2006-present), among others. Conrad curated the June 2009 exhibition "Future of the Past: Reviving the Queer Archives" at Maine College of Art. The Collection contains materials related to radical queers in Maine and elsewhere, and the case of the "New Jersey 4." It includes newsletters, posters, signs, a halter top, pins, a 'zine about radical queer moments, literary publications, and videos. Of particular interest are materials from and about the exhibition of Annette Dragon’s photographs which Conrad curated at MECA in 2009. 2007-2009, undated 2.25 ft.

Cruikshank Feminist-Lesbian Publications Collection LG MS 6
Margaret Cruikshank was an early scholar in the field of Lesbian studies and taught a women’s studies course at the University of Southern Maine. She also teaches lesbian studies at the University of Maine in Orono. The Collection contains almost a full run of The Furies, an important 1970s publication in the field, as well as other scattered issues of feminist-lesbian publications from the 1970s. 1970s 0.5 ft.

Margaret Cruikshank Papers
Margaret Cruikshank was an early scholar in the field of Lesbian studies and taught a women’s studies course at the University of Southern Maine. She also teaches lesbian studies at the University of Maine in Orono. Cruikshank’s literary papers are housed at the Gay and Lesbian Collections of the San Francisco Public Library. The Papers contain documentation of Cruikshank’s "Intro to LGBT Studies" class, as well as her own research materials. 1970s-2004 1 ft.

Susan Cummings-Lawrence Collection
Susan Cummings-Lawrence is a community activist and a founder of The AIDS Project. The Collection consists of a wedding photograph album and invitation to the wedding of Peaches Rona R.J. Bass-Blessington and Perry S. Sutherland. undated 0.25 ft.

George Daniell Artwork
George Daniell, photographer and artist, lived the second half of his life in Maine, where he focused on the gay community.  His photographic portraits of well-known artists and literary figures are highly regarded in the art community. This Artwork consists of a framed watercolor, untitled, waterscape, 1993, and a framed photograph, "Fire Island '50." 1993, undated

Annette Dragon Papers
Annette Dragon moved to Portland in 1990, began work in a camera store, and started shooting photographs for the local gay paper – Our Paper – in 1991. She also became a key activist in ACT/UP Portland and co-founded the queer monthly APEX, which had much more radical content than the other local choices. An exhibition entitled Future of the Past: Reviving the Queer Archives, on view at the Maine College of Art from June 5 to July 3, 2009, recreated her exhibition at the University of Southern Maine, March 2 to 31, 2000, called "Act Up/Fight Back/Take Pictures: Ten Years of Queer Activism in Maine." The Papers contain photographic prints, including all of the mounted prints used in the March 2000 show "Act Up Fight Back Take Pictures," as well as duplicates of those photographs and others not in the show; promotional materials for the show; files related to the publication of the newspaper APEX and to the 1995 anti-gay referendum, general files and correspondence; local and national LGBT publications; and VHS cassettes holding local/state/national news and other programs. 1990s 8.75 ft.

Diane Elze Papers
Diane Elze was an activist in the LGBT community in the Portland area in the 1980s and 1990s. Among other activities, she was a founding member of the Maine Lesbian Gay Political Alliance, worked on the AIDS Project, and founded the LGBT youth group, Outright.  She also edited several LGBT and women’s newsletters. The Papers contains publications and newsletters, materials from events such as the Maine L & G Film Festival, newspaper clippings, materials from various Maine LGBT organizations, materials on Charlie Howard, and files on gay topics and organizations in Maine. 1970s-2000 3 ft.

EqualityMaine Archives LG MS 13
The Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance (MLGPA) was formed in 1984 to advocate for LGBT issues and to educate the public, media, and politicians about them. Now known as EqualityMaine, over the last twenty-five years, the organization has worked to secure civil rights legislation, pass hate crimes protection laws, promote workplace equality and ensure responsible HIV/AIDS policies. The Archives contains organizational records of MLGPA and EqualityMaine, and other materials. 1984-2009 14.5 ft.

Family Affairs Newsletter Archives
Jean Vermette, editor. Family Affairs is a free, twice-a-month, social activities email newsletter for the GLBTI community. It covers a 50 mile radius around Bangor and also Aroostook and Washington counties. The Archives contains printouts of the newsletters, beginning in 2004 Oct, plus poll results from 2005, 2007 and 2008, and the FAN Business Directory from 2004 Sep to 2008 Mar. We will continue to archive issues as the editor submits them. 2004-2008 0.5 ft.

Susan Farnsworth Papers LG MS 17
Susan Farnsworth earned her undergraduate degree from Bates College in 1969 and her Juris Doctor degree from the University of Maine School of Law in 1976. She has worked in several city and state government positions, including Maine State Representative from 1988-1994. Farnsworth has also been active in the LGBT community, serving as a member of the Executive Committee and an organizer of “Yes on 6” PAC in the Statewide Referendum Campaign in 2000. The Papers consist of working papers, publications, and other materials. 1970s-1990s 2.25 ft.

David Garrity Papers
David Garrity is a Portland-based property owner/landlord and a longtime gay-rights advocate. He served as a Board Member of the Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance from 1997-98 and was their Vice President from 1998-99 and President from 1999-2001. Garrity has long been closely involved with the Democratic Party, serving in such roles as delegate from Maine to the Democratic National Convention, member of the Democratic National Committee, and Vice Chair of the Maine Democratic Party. He was an elector for the 2004 electoral college. He also ran for Portland City Council in 1997, losing a closely-contested race to Karen Geraghty. The Papers contain Garrity’s files as well as gay and lesbian local publications and clippings from the 1990s. 1990s 20 ft.

GAYLA Archives
GAYLA is a brotherhood of gay and bisexual men, “expressly designed to provide mutual support, nurturance, friendship, loving, and mentoring of one another,” in order to maximize personal and collective growth. It meets annually for a week in the summer at Ferry Beach in Saco, Maine. The brothers sustain their spirit through the year by organizing periodic winter reunions, area social events and pot-lucks; publishing a newsletter; and establishing a virtual network through email and a GAYLA brothers only Yahoo group. The Archives contains documents and artifacts from the annual conferences, including photographs, audio cassettes, video cassettes, schedules, planning and evaluation papers. 1980-2005 2 ft.

GLSEN - Southern Maine Banner
GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network) is a national education organization working to make schools safer for all students, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression. GLSEN Southern Maine is one of two GLSEN chapters in Maine (the other is Downeast GLSEN, in Ellsworth). GLSEN Southern Maine was founded in 1996. Its members consult with school administrators and provide resources and support for the Gay Straight Alliances in high schools in southern and midcoast Maine. Banner of the Southern Maine chapter of the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network. 1995/1996 1 ft.

Sturgis Haskins Papers LG MS 7
Sturgis Haskins is a long-time activist in Gay and Lesbian communities, and was one of the founders of the annual Maine Gay Symposium started in 1974 at University of Maine, Orono. Haskins was a co- founder in 1973 of the Wilde-Stein Club, the first openly Gay student organization at the University of Maine in Orono, and in 1974 was Chair of the first Maine Gay Symposium. The Papers contain material documenting Haskins’ personal life, pamphlets, correspondence, memorabilia, and information on organizations in which Haskins was interested, and clippings covering topics relating to the Gay and Lesbian communities and homosexuality. There are significant runs of Esplanade, Fag Rag, Gay Community News, and Mainely Gay. 1966-1999 8 ft.

Sturgis Haskins Papers Addendum
This addition to Haskins’s Papers consists of 26 looseleaf scrapbooks with a variety of print, manuscript and graphic material documenting LGBT life and organizations in Maine, and 2 linear ft. of boxed material containing a variety of print materials. 6 ft.

John Holverson Papers
Former director of the Portland Museum of Art, Holverson was a health care activist and AIDS volunteer in Portland from the 1970s onward, and Head of Prevention Education at The AIDS Project from 1994- 1999. The Papers contain his working papers and materials from various LGBT & AIDS-related organizations, including the Community Planning Group, Maine Speakout, Maine Gay Men's Chorus, Harbor Masters, and the AIDS Project. 1987-2002 10 ft.

Jessen GLBT/Women’s Newsletter & Media Collection LG MS 14
Barbara Jessen formed the Maine Tradeswomen's Network, a loose organization of women in the trades and supporting personnel, in 1990, to promote networking, mentoring, and employment. The Collection consists of six newsletter titles, plus newspaper clippings, fact sheets, and articles - all covering LGBT and women’s issues in Maine and nationally. 1970s-2000 0.5 ft.

Rita Kissen T-Shirts
Rita Kissen was a member of the USM education faculty from 1990 to 2005, centering her scholarship on gay and lesbian teachers and diversity in the classroom. This collection consists of 6 t-shirts documenting LGBT events in Maine. 1 ft.

Robin Lambert Papers
Robin Lambert was politically active in Maine for more than 40 years, was for many years the most prominent Republican to publicly support LGBT civil rights, and persuaded many in his party to join him in that struggle. He was one of the founders of the Maine Lesbian Gay Political Alliance (MLGPA)(now EqualityMaine) in 1984, and was twice recognized by MLGPA for his outstanding work for civil rights. As an early advocate of addressing the issues surrounding HIV and its impact on the state, Lambert was a founding member of both The Maine Health Foundation and The AIDS Project in Portland, and was appointed to Governor McKernan's AIDS Advisory Committee in 1987, serving for many years. He lived with AIDS for many years, and died in 2006 at the age of 56. The Papers include records of the Maine Health Foundation, posters from many events, material on his unsuccessful run for State Senate, a great deal of material on AIDS policy and prevention in Maine, and on the national AIDS Quilt. 1980s-1990s 5.25 ft.

Robert Lebel Papers
Publications and artifacts related to Maine's LGBT community, particularly the struggle to retain an anti- discrimination law passed by the Lewiston City Council. 6 ft.

Lewiston Auburn Gay Youth Collection
Outright Lewiston/Auburn creates safe and affirming environments for youth age 22 and under who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and/or questioning. The current Outright Lewiston/Auburn originated in a group of young people and adults who came together in 1996 to form an organization where LGBTQ and allied young people could find support and community, a mission that has expanded with the recognition that the terms those letters indicate are too narrow: Outright is for people of all genders and sexualities. The Edward Little High School Gay-Straight Alliance serves Auburn students grades 9 through 12 from the Edward Little High School community. Some of the material was created by Outright Lewiston/Auburn and some by the Edward Little High School Gay-Straight Alliance. The Collection contains print material, including an Outright Lewiston/Auburn brochure, the 'zine leftOUT, a Safe Zone sticker, pages from the publication Lattitude 44, and a poster for a GLBTQA Dance Party; a CD containing photographs taken by several students on a field trip, and color print-outs of the photographs. 2008-2009, undated ca. 0.25 ft.

Mitzi Lichtman Papers
Mitzi Lichtman is a long-time LGBT activist and coalition-builder working in the Midcoast region and statewide. The Papers contain photocopies of newspaper articles and records of Maine Won't Discriminate, Common Circle for Human Rights, Maine Coalition for Equal Rights, and other civil rights groups and campaigns, particularly from the midcoast region of Maine, dating from the 1990s. 1990s 0.5 ft.

Lanier Lumbert T-Shirts
T-shirts promoting local legislative campaigns in Portland and Lewiston. ca. 2001 0.25 ft.

Maine Civil Rights March & Rally Committee Archives
The Maine Civil Rights March & Rally Committee was formed in response to the February 1998 repeal of the civil rights law which had been enacted in May 1997. They organized a march, rally and fundraising entertainment event on Oct. 18, 1998. They followed these events with a vigil in memory of Mathew Shepard, with services held in several parts of the state on Oct. 18, 1998. The Committee also sponsored an "Interfaith Vigil Against Hate Violence" in Bangor on Oct. 7, 1999. The Archives contains some records of the Committee, blank cards representative of an effort to have people write messages in support of their mission, stickers and pins, promotional materials for the march and rally, video recordings of the event, programs from the 1999 vigil, and 2 large banners.   3 ft.

Maine Frontrunners Archives
Maine Frontrunners was founded April Fool’s Day, 1995, inspired by the enthusiastic leadership of the legendary runner John Bean. The group has run Saturday mornings since then, through all kinds of weather. The Maine group is part of International Front Runners, an affiliation of GLBT running/walking clubs that have organized in many of the larger cities around the world.  Inspired by Patricia Nell Warren's novel The Front Runner, the first Front Runner club began in San Francisco in 1974, and other FR clubs quickly began forming in the United States and then in Canada and abroad. 1.5 ft.

Maine Health Foundation Archives
The Maine Health Foundation was founded in Portland in 1983, to fund efforts promoting the health of the gay and lesbian community. It ended up funding primarily HIV-related services and activities. The Archives contains administrative records of theorganization. 1984-1992 1 ft.

Maine Lesbian Feminist Archives LG MS 5
Maine Lesbian Feminist was a group in Belfast, Maine whose primary purpose was to publish a newsletter. The group existed from about 1976 through 1984. The Archives consists of issues of the Maine Lesbian Feminist Newsletter published during the late 1970s-early 1980s, as well as records of the group that published it. 1970s-1980s 0.25 ft.

Maine Rural Network Archives
The Maine Rural Network’s mission was to promote visibility and security for lesbians, gay men, bisexual and transgender people living in rural Maine, and to work for social, educational and economic justice for all Maine people by creating a statewide network connecting local groups. The group disbanded in 2002. The Archives contains records of the group, as well as computer files, videos, and oral history cassettes from the "Rural Lives Project." 1994-2002 2 ft.

Maine Speak Out Project Archives
Maine Speak Out Project is a Portland-based organization which through presentations promotes respect and understanding of different sexual orientations. "The mission of the Maine Speakout Project is to create a society that is inclusive and respectful of people of differing sexual and gender orientations by providing opportunities for non-divisive dialogue." The Archives contains organizational records, including media guides, informational pamphlets, newspaper clippings, meeting minutes, agendas, newsletters, and videos. 1995-2001 16.5 ft.

Maine Won't Discriminate Archives LG MS 18
Maine Won't Discriminate (MWD) was an organization created to work toward passing LGBT civil rights legislation in Maine and to advocate against/for citizens referenda that would have overturned/sustained such legislation.  The Archives contains organizational records as well as print and audiovisual material created and used by the organization. The majority of the materials relate to MWD’s ultimately successful efforts to oppose referendum Question 1 in 2005, which read: "Do you want to reject the new law that would protect people from discrimination in employment, housing, education, public accommodations and credit based on their sexual orientation?" The materials include polling data, strategy documents and action plans, details regarding direct mail campaigns and special events, press clippings, statements of support and testimonials, media plans, correspondence, meeting notes, website plans, and other internal documents. Also present are similar materials related to referendum battles in 1995 and 1997-98, as well as materials regarding L.D. 1116 (1997), L.D. 1196 (2005), and other activities during the period of 1996-99, such as elections during this time, debate over same-sex marriages/domestic partnerships, and collaborations with other groups like the Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance, Maine Freedom to Marry Coalition, Safer School Coalition of Maine, and Maine’s Law Enforcement Curriculum Committee. 1991-2005 7 ft.

Mainely Men Archives
Mainely Men is a twice-yearly weekend conference in which men gather in a quiet, rustic lakeside settling in central Maine. During the weekend each man may develop new friendships, participate in a program or workshops related to men's issues, become involved in a talent show, relax, enjoy the woods and learn more about himself.  We are an unstructured group that meets in the spring and fall and exists as a group only during the conference weekend. Mainely Men is a twice-yearly weekend conference in which men gather in a quiet, rustic lakeside settling in central Maine. The Archives contains photographs, incorporation papers, t-shirts (lots), membership lists, administrative records. 1980s-2004 2 ft.

Michael Martin Papers
Print materials collected by this AIDS activist, primarily about the AIDS epidemic and treatment, including The AIDS Project in Maine. 1 ft.

Dale McCormick Papers
Dale McCormick was the first woman in the country to complete a carpentry apprenticeship with the carpenter’s union and is a member of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters local 1996, having been a carpenter and contractor for 30 years. In 1988, McCormick founded Women Unlimited, a program that successfully trains women on welfare to compete for high-paying jobs in trade and technical occupations. In 1984, McCormick helped found and became the first President of the Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance (now called EqualityMaine), which advocates statewide for civil rights and better treatment for lesbian/gay/bi/transgender/and questioning people. She was a co-founder of Northeast Women in Transportation, which educated women’s organizations around the country about the opportunities in the Federal Intermodal Surface Transportation and Efficiency Act (ISTEA) for increasing the number of women and minorities in the construction industry. McCormick won a seat in the Maine Senate in 1990 and was re-elected twice in a conservative district. She was elected Treasurer of the State of Maine on December 4, 1996 and served eight years, Maine’s first female Constitutional Officer. In 2005 Governor John Baldacci appointed McCormick Director of the Maine State Housing Authority; she was reappointed to that position in February 2010. She has a B.A. from the University of Iowa and has written two books: Against the Grain: A Carpentry Manual for Women, and Housemending: Home Repair For The Rest of Us. She was the second recipient of the Sampson Center’s Catalyst for Change Award. The Papers contain records and newspaper articles documenting McCormick’s political career and her LGBT and AIDS activism in Maine. 1970s-1990s 6 ft.

Mountain Valley Men Archives
Mountain Valley Men is a New England Gay social group.  The Archives consists of organizational records of the group. 1989-2000 0.5 ft.

Albert Nickerson Collection
Albert Nickerson is a long-time Portland businessman and LGBT activist. The Collection contains 43 signed works by John Preston and other Maine authors, David Sedaris, Dale McCormick, and Armistead Maupin; copies of Our Paper, Apex and other Maine LGBT publications; Karen Geraghty’s Mayoral Inauguration program and invitation; obituary and funeral program for John Preston; Armistead Maupin lecture flyer and ticket stub; 1 each desk & wall calendars; and an audio CD of a David Sedaris performance. 3.5 ft.

Northern Lambda Nord Archives LG MS 11
One of the earliest gay and lesbian groups in the state, NLN began in 1979 as a support network for the rural LGBT community, located in Aroostook County, with members in Maine and New Brunswick. By the mid-1980s, NLN had added an outreach component, working to educate the local community on LGBT identity and acceptance and health and HIV/AIDS issues. They also started a Gay-Lesbian Phoneline which grew into the Maine HIV/AIDS Hotline. The group disbanded in 2000, but re-formed in 2006. The Archives contains an extensive collection of organizational records, promotional materials, photo albums and artifacts. 1977-2002 21 ft.

Northern Maine Pride Archives
Northern Maine Pride, based in Bangor, saw itself as a social action group which celebrated diversity, focusing on education and bringing diverse communities together. The group organized a Diversity Celebration every June during the middle years of the 2000s decade. The Archives contains organizational records and correspondence, checkbook and unused checks, receipt books, and miscellaneous papers. 1 ft.

Christopher O'Connor Collection LG MS 4
Christopher O’Connor was resident director of USM’s Portland Hall dormitory in the fall of 1999 when there was an incident involving anti-gay graffiti in the dormitory. The Collection includes newspaper clippings regarding the incident, brochures, and a letter to the USM community from O'Connor. 1999 0.25 ft.

Our Paper Photograph Archives
Photographs used in the publication Our Paper: a voice for lesbians and gay males in Maine. 1 ft.

Betsy Parsons Collection
Betsy Parsons is a teacher in the Portland Public Schools and a Board member, GLSEN-Southern Maine (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network). She also serves on the LGBT Advisory Committee for the Jean Byers Sampson Center for Diversity in Maine at the University of Southern Maine and is involved with the Unitarian Universalist Church. Recently, she was the Southern Maine coordinator for the Marriage Equality Family Ambassador Project, a grassroots educational initiative to promote understanding of how marriage for same-sex couples will help Maine children, families and communities, supported by Maine Civil Liberties Union Foundation, Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders and Equality Maine Foundation. The Collection consists of signs used in a Nov. 5, 2005 rally, organized by the Unitarian Universalist Church in favor of LGBT civil rights legislation, as well as printed material from the Maine Won't Discriminate campaign. The Betsy Parsons Papers, within the Collection, consist of concert programs and promotional materials for the chorus Women in Harmony, one issue of the serial "in Partnership," the state gov't publication, "Maine's common core of learning," a PRYSM flyer, and papers from the Allen Ave. UU Church. 2005 2 ft.

Frances W. Peabody Papers
Frannie Peabody was one of Maine's leading AIDS activists. Best known in Maine and nationally for her exceptional leadership in the AIDS epidemic, she also gave significant service on historic preservation, child welfare, and gay rights issues. She was a founder of Portland’s The AIDS Project and of the Frannie Peabody Center (formerly Peabody House), as well as of Greater Portland Landmarks. The Papers contain Peabody's personal papers, including her work with The AIDS Project and bereavement counseling. 1981-1999 14.5 ft.

Bob Poirier Papers
Bobby Roger Poirier is a film producer, director, and actor. He founded BobbyRoger Incorporated, a television and motion picture production company. The company has produced documentaries for Maine PBS, as well as national television productions and independent and educational films. Some of these projects address LGBT issues. Videos, in Beta and Mini-Digital Video Cassette formats, made to document events and legislation of interest. A few are dated 1997 and 1998, most are not dated. 1990s 1 ft.

Prevention Works Harm Reduction Services Archives
This organization began as Androscoggin Valley AIDS Coalition, became the AIDS Coalition of Lewiston-Auburn, and then Prevention Works Harm Reduction Services, before merging with Coastal AIDS Network. The Archives contains business files, a framed text, t-shirts, and a wooden sign. 1.5 ft.

Rainbow Business & Professional Association Archives
The Rainbow Business & Professional Association (rbpa) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the vitality, productivity and growth of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender business and professional community throughout the State of Maine. Established in 1992, it was Maine’s original LGBT business & professional networking organization.  The Rainbow Business & Professional Association (rbpa) is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the vitality, productivity and growth of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender business and professional community throughout the State of Maine. Established in 1992, it was Maine’s original LGBT business & professional networking organization. The Archives contains operational and promotional documents, rbpa publications, local and national publications, and 3 t-shirts. 1999-2008 ca. 2.5 ft.

Erica Rand Papers
Erica Rand is an activist, writer, and teacher.  She holds a position as Professor of Art and Visual Culture and of Women and Gender Studies at Bates College. She teaches courses on contemporary culture with particular attention to sexuality, race, and gender, and, within these areas, to queer and trans sexualities and genders. Her writings include Barbie's Queer Accessories (Duke, 1995) and The Ellis Island Snow Globe (Duke, 2005), winner of the Alan Bray Memorial Book Award from the Modern Language Association's GL/Q Caucus. In January 1993, the Lewiston City Council, after much debate and with a five to two margin, passed a nondiscrimination ordinance initiated by Police Chief Laurent F. Gilbert (who had previously organized a Hate/Bias Crimes Task Force within his department in 1991). The ordinance prohibited discrimination based on sexual orientation in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodation, and the extension of credit. An opposition group – originally called ACT (All Catholics for Truth) and later operating under the name Citizens of Lewiston for the Repeal (COLFR) – then gathered enough signatures to put the ordinance to a public referendum, held in November 1993. Despite the efforts of the ordinance’s supporters, led by the coalition Equal Protection Lewiston (EPL), the ordinance was overturned with a two-to-one margin. The Papers consists of materials gathered by Rand, who was an early Steering Committee member of EPL (and later split with the organization). The materials include numerous press clippings about the ordinance and referendum battle, an EPL press packet with contact names and phone numbers, and letters and statements of support for the ordinance. Some press from after the referendum battle, including a substantial feature article in Newsweek and articles about the 1995 state-wide referendum Question 1, is also present. 0.5 ft.

Lois Galgay Reckitt Papers
Lois Reckitt, Executive Director of Family Crisis Services in Portland, Maine, has been at the forefront of Maine's efforts to stop domestic abuse and assist its victims. She has been the Chair of the Maine Coalition for Family Crisis Services, the Maine Representative to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, and, for six years, a member of the Maine Commission on Domestic Abuse, serving for three years as Chair. She has also served on the Performance Council of the Judicial Branch, and is currently Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Maine Criminal Justice Academy. She co-founded the first chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW) in Maine, co-founded the state organization of NOW, the Maine Coalition for Human Rights, Maine Right to Choose, the Maine Women's Lobby, and the Matlovich Society, an educational and cultural group for gays and lesbians and their allies. Reckitt gained national exposure through her service to NOW, where she has served more than fifteen years on the National Board of Directors, including two terms as Executive Vice President in Washington, D.C. In addition, she helped to organize and served for eight years on the National Board of the Human Rights Campaign Fund, and served as the group's Deputy Director before returning to Maine in 1990. The Papers contain correspondence, writings, newsletters, clippings, and other papers Reckitt gathered between the 1970s and 2002. 1970s-2002 38 ft.

Referendum 6 Collection LG MS 1
The Collection was assembled by the staff of USM's Special Collections to document the November 2000 State election referendum against discrimination based on sexual orientation. The issue was Question 6 on the ballot and read: “Do you favor ratifying the action of the 119th Legislature whereby it passed an act extending to all citizens regardless of their sexual orientation the same basic rights to protection against discrimination now guaranteed to citizens on the basis of race, color, religion, sex or national origin in the areas of employment, housing, public accommodation and credit and where the act expressly states that nothing in the act confers legislative approval of, or special rights to, any person or group of persons?” The act was overturned (50.38% voted to overturn versus 49.62% to sustain). The Collection includes articles from the Bangor Daily News, Casco Bay Weekly, Portland Press Herald, and Sun Journal; information from the websites of groups opposing the act (advocating “No on 6”); flyers, brochures, a poster, and material from the websites of groups advocating for the act to be upheld via the referendum, including Yes on 6, Maine Coalition for Equal Rights, Maine Council of Churches, MLGPA (detailed chronology of efforts to pass gay-rights bill), and Mid Coast for Human Rights; and other background information about the referendum and surrounding debate. 2000 2.25 ft.

Penny Rich Papers
Records and artifacts documenting the Maine Lesbian Gay Film Festival and Women's Community Project of Portland. 1980s-1990s 7 ft.

Eugene Rochow Papers LG MS 10
Eugene Rochow was an early member and served on the board of the Matlovich Society, a Portland-based organization that provided an educational and cultural forum for the local gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and questioning community during the 1990s. The Papers document the Matlovich Society between 1991 and 1996 and other organizations and events in the LGBT community. The majority of the papers in this collection are records of the Matlovich Society which Rochow retained after the organization ceased in 1999. The collection also includes documents related to Equal Protection Portland, an initiative in 1992 to pass and protect a Portland city ordinance that barred discrimination against homosexuals, and Maine LGBT newspapers spanning the years 1979 through 1997. 1991-1996 4.25 ft.

Michael Rossetti Papers
Michael Rossetti was chiefly responsible for creating and running Southern Maine Pride, and was the grandmaster at the 2006 Pride festival. The Papers contain records and artifacts documenting Southern Maine Pride and other Gay and Lesbian events from the 1980s to 2000. 1980s-2000 4 ft.

Marty Sabol Papers
Marty Sabol works on issues of public health, particularly through the Portland Department of Health and Human Services. He has served as an advisor to the Equity Fund of the Maine Community Foundation and been involved with the Maine Covering Kids and Families Initiative, among other health and human services programs. He was among the founders of the Maine Lesbian/Gay Political Alliance, serving as Secretary in 1984-85. The Papers contain a poster for the play, "Oklahomo," and the guest book of the Maine Gay Symposium, covering approximately 10 years of meetings. 2 ft.

Same-Sex Marriage Collection
Susie R. Bock, Director of the Sampson Center, collected these materials during the public debate of the bill before the Maine Legislature in early 2009. Newspapers from around Maine, plus Boston Globe and Wall Street Journal, with articles dealing with the passage of a same-sex marriage bill in the Maine Legislature. Includes ancillary materials, primarily from the public hearing on the bill in April 2009.    2009 1 ft.

May Sarton Scrapbook LG MS 15
William Barry is a well-known, published local historian. He had a slight connection with May Sarton through his friend Dorothy Healy, co-founder of the Maine Women Writers Collection. The Scrapbook contains documents relating to his correspondence with Sarton regarding her essay for a memorial book for Healy; documents and newspaper clippings relating to celebrations of Sarton’s life and work; documents regarding Barry’s effort to get Sarton’s essay in Healy’s memorial included in a Sarton bibliography. 1983-2008 0.25 ft.

Howard Solomon Collection
Howard Solomon worked at Tufts University from 1971 to 2004 as a professor in the History Department (focusing on medieval and early modern French history) and Dean. Solomon is an adjunct faculty member in the History Department at the University of Southern Maine, where he served as the Sampson Center Scholar-in-Residence for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Collection from 2001 to 2007. He continues to speak and write on gay and lesbian issues, as a form of scholarly and public activism. The Collection contains posters from various political campaigns, t-shirts, a banner of the group Casco Gay Men, a file of Abromson scholarship applications, and other materials relating to the LGBT community. 3 ft.

South Portland Citizens for Justice Archives LG MS 8
South Portland Citizens for Justice was a group seeking a local ordinance against discrimination based on sexual orientation. The group campaigned in support of the proposed Human Rights Ordinance, which was on the ballot in the November 3, 1998 election. The Archives contains newspaper articles (clippings and entire issues) that relate to the 1998 Human Rights Ordinance. Also included are items from the South Portland Citizens for Justice organization, such as correspondence, publications, posters, stickers, and press packets. 1998 2.5 ft.

Jean Stickney Posters LG MS 3
Stickney was an agent for entertainers. This is a collection of colored posters advertising events of interest to the Gay and Lesbian communities. Many of these events were organized by Wild Iris Productions, Jean Stickney’s business, and held in the First Parish Church in Portland, Maine. 1980s-1990s 2 ft.

Transsupport Archives LG MS 16
Transsupport is a non-profit, educational, non-sexual peer support group for Cross-dressers, Transsexuals, their families, friends and significant others. The Archives contains organizational papers and newsletters from between 1994 and 1998, plus one issue of vol. 1 of the newsletter, dated 1989. 1989, 1994-1998 0.5 ft.

USM Lesbian and Gay Oral History Project Collection
Collection of twelve interviews done in the Summer of 1999 with members of the gay community who were politically active in Maine in the 1970's. 1999 1 ft.

Marli F. Weiner Diaries
Marli F. Weiner was Professor of History at UMaine, Orono, when she died in March of 2009. She had taught at five other institutions of higher education before coming to Maine. She was active in the Maine Humanities Council and a key participant in their literature and medicine program, leading two reading and discussion groups at regional hospitals. The Diaries consist of Prof. Wiener’s personal and professional journals, dating from her childhood. They document her growth into adulthood and, later, her mindfulness of being lesbian. The Diaries are restricted from use until March 2034. 3.5 ft.

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