First LGBTQ Historical Markers Unveiled In Lexington

Posted at 7:24 PM, Jun 03, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-03 19:24:37-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) – The first LGBTQ historical markers in Kentucky have been unveiled in Lexington.

The signs went up on Main Street Sunday afternoon. They’re the first in the commonwealth to recognize LGBTQ historic sites.

“It’s important to draw attention to this history because it has so often been hidden, right, this is a story where discretion meant survival,” said Jonathon Coleman.

Now Coleman says that history is out in the open, where it belongs. His group, the Faulkner Morgan Archive, and Just Fund Kentucky played a major role in getting the markers up.

“It is the oldest continuous queer space in the state of Kentucky. LGBTQ Kentuckians have been gathering here maybe as early as 1939, so it’s a long long history,” said Coleman.

That history is so important to couples like Greg Bourke and Michael Deleon.

“We met here in Lexington when we were students at the University of Kentucky, so this is a particularly important to us because it was at the bar that we met 36 years ago,” said Deleon.

Bourke and Deleon have been active in fighting for rights for gay couples. They say this is an important step.

“People, when they’re traveling these streets, they’ll stop and they’ll see this marker and they will be aware of the fact that there is gay history here,” said Bourke.

Organizers for the event say they hope to place more historical markers around Kentucky at important LGBTQ sites.