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New Trans Archive Seeks Funding Online

| Feb 6, 2017
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Transgender historian Ms. Bob Davis has announced the founding of the Louise Lawrence Transgender Archive and launched a crowd fundraising campaign on Indiegogo. The Louise Lawrence Transgender Archive (LLTA) will house an extensive and varied collection of transgender archival materials. LLTA will make hundreds of publications, thousands of photographs, theatrical programs and recordings, now in storage, available to researchers and the public.

The collection of archival materials that Ms. Bob has amassed is truly extraordinary — it stretches back long before “transgender” even existed and it thoroughly documents the emergence of what we now understand to be transgender community. Ms. Bob’s lifetime of community engagement, activism, and leadership provides an unparalleled knowledge base for this collection. Any researcher who is able to work with this collection would be in for a real treat! — K.J. Rawson, Ph.D., Director, Digital Transgender Archive

The archive is named in honor of Northern California transgender pioneer Louise Lawrence, who began living full-time as a woman in 1942, first in Berkeley, then San Francisco. Her correspondence with transgender people around the world was instrumental in the creation of the early transgender community and the community’s connection to sex researchers, such as Alfred Kinsey and Harry Benjamin.

This fundraising campaign is under the fiscal sponsorship of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Historical Society in San Francisco. All donations to LLTA are tax deductible. They hope to raise $20,000 to create a 200 square foot space in Vallejo, CA, with controlled temperature, relative humidity and air quality; scheduled to open in fall 2017.

The Louise Lawrence Transgender Archive will be an amazing and much needed resource for the transgender community and scholars alike. Ms. Bob Davis has assembled a formidable collection of publications and other artifacts from past (and largely forgotten) eras of trans history. Preserving this collection, and making it accessible to the public, is a laudable goal! — Julia Serano, author of Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity

Ms. BOB DAVIS, LLTA founder and director, served two terms on the board of GLBT Historical Society, one as secretary. She presented the lecture, “Do the Clothes Fit? — Searching for Trans* Identity in Archival Images of Cross-dressing,” at Moving Trans* History Forward, 2014, the world’s first academic conference on transgender history, University of Victoria, BC. Ms. Bob delivered the opening keynote at the 40th annual Fantasia Fair, 2014, the world’s longest running, annual transgender event. Her article, “Using Archives to Identify the Trans* Women of Casa Susanna,” appeared in Transgender Studies Quarterly’s “Archives & Archiving” issue, 2015, Duke University Press. She teaches music at City College of San Francisco.

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Category: Transgender Community News, Transgender History


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