Newspapers are a valuable source for documenting queer history.
In the past, newspapers tended to avoid mentioning sexual-identity, except as shock-value to sell papers. Nevertheless, newspapers do provide important historic documentation of queer history, and especially of queer people of color.
Prior to the 1970s, most mainstream newspapers avoided any mention of queer identity, except to label persons as sexual deviants. When searching through newspapers you may need to look for terms today considered very derogatory. Sociologist Harold Corzine observed in 1977 that usually “only when homosexuality [was] linked with bizarre crimes” did stories appear in majority news sources.
In the 1970s more queer focused newspapers, magazines, and newsletters began to be produced. Since 1970 over 30 different titles were published in the St. Louis area.
This chronological listing of St. Louis-area publications provides a board overview of publications available to researchers. Please contact the organization listed for more information and to verify specific issues available:
Pride Guide [St. Louis] is an annual publication starting in 1981:
Please contact organizations directly for newspapers not located at Olin Library (WUSTL).
Online access and search-ability is available for the noted African-American newspaper, Chicago Defender, which often covered national news as well as Midwest news