Season Two

Episode 14 —Jean O’Leary — Part 1

Jean O’Leary was passionate—about women, nuns, feminism, and equal rights. She left an indelible mark on the women’s movement and the LGBTQ civil rights movement, but not without causing controversy, too. After all, she was a troublemaker. And proud of it.

Episode 13 — Hal Call

Hal Call never minced words. The midwestern newspaperman and WWII vet wrested control of the Mattachine Society from its founders and went on to fight police oppression and champion sexual freedom. He also made more than a few enemies along the way.

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Episode 12 — Shirley Willer

Shirley Willer had good reason to be angry—she was beaten by the police and a dear friend was allowed to die. Because they were gay. She channeled that anger into action, traveling the country in the 1960s to launch new chapters of gay rights organizations.

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Episode 11 — Johnson & Wicker

Meet Marsha P. Johnson and Randy Wicker—two very different heroes of the early LGBT civil rights movement. Marsha was a Street Transvestite Action Revolutionary. Randy led the first gay demonstration in 1964 in coat and tie.

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Season 2 — Preview

Making Gay History is back with more hidden histories mined from Eric Marcus’s 30-year-old audio archive. Ten new episodes featuring intimate, personal interviews with LGBTQ civil rights pioneers—some known and some long-forgotten champions, heroes, and witnesses to queer history.

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Bonus Episodes

Bonus Episode — Love is Love

The right to love and be loved for who we are has always been a driving force in the fight for LGBT civil rights. Eric shares four special love stories from his archive featuring activists who helped change the course of history.

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Season One

Making Gay History — A Preview

The Making Gay History podcast mines Eric Marcus’s decades old audio archive of rare interviews to create intimate, personal portraits of both known and long-forgotten champions, heroes, and witnesses to history.

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Episode 01 — Sylvia Rivera

A never before heard conversation with trans icon, self-described “drag queen,” and Stonewall uprising veteran Sylvia Rivera. Sylvia relives that June 1969 night in vivid detail and describes her struggle for recognition in the movement.

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Episode 02 — Wendell Sayers

You’ve never heard of Wendell Sayers, but once you hear his story, you’ll never forget him. Born in Western Kansas in 1904, Wendell was the first black lawyer to work for Colorado’s Attorney General, and risked everything to join a gay discussion group.

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Episode 03 — Edythe Eyde

In 1947, Hollywood secretary Edythe Eyde, a.k.a. Lisa Ben, had the audacity to publish “Vice Versa,” the first ever “magazine” for lesbians. Even more audacious, she imagined a future gay utopia that has all come to pass. In the '50s, Edythe sang gay parodies of popular songs in LA gay clubs.

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Episode 04 — Dr. Evelyn Hooker

In 1945 Dr. Evelyn Hooker’s gay friend Sam From urged her to do a study challenging the commonly held belief that homosexuals were by nature mentally ill. It was work that would ultimately strip the “sickness” label from millions of gay men and women and change the course of history.

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Episode 05 — Frank Kameny

Frank Kameny fought for what was right. And he never gave up. Lessons for us all.

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Episode 06 — Jeanne & Morty Manford

When Jeanne Manford’s gay son was badly beaten at a protest in 1972, she took action and founded an organization for parents of gays known today as PFLAG.

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Episode 07 — Chuck Rowland

A WWII veteran turns theory into action, co-founding one of the first LGBT rights groups, the Mattachine Society, in 1950—a time when gay people were considered sick, sinful, criminal, and a threat to national security.

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Episode 08 — Dear Abby

A generation ago, tens of millions of people turned to "Dear Abby” in her daily newspaper column for advice. Long before others did, and at considerable risk, she used her platform and celebrity in support of gay people and their equal rights.

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Episode 09 — Gittings & Lahusen

Self-described gay rights fanatics and life partners Barbara Gittings and Kay “Tobin” Lahusen helped supercharge the nascent movement in the 1960s and brought their creativity, passion, determination, and good humor to the Gay Liberation 1970s, leaving behind an inspiring legacy of dramatic change.

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Episode 10 — Vito Russo

Vito Russo loved movies, but he looked behind the silver screen and saw how Hollywood was sending a message that LGBTQ people were less-than-human. He decided that that had to change. He wrote a book, co-founded GLAAD, and when his life was on the line, was one of the people who founded ACT UP.

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