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LGBT Path Through History in New York

Stonewall Inn exteriorThere is no LGBT history without New York State, the birthplace of the modern LGBT rights movement. 

The Stonewall Inn, which still operates as a neighborhood gay bar in New York City's Greenwich Village, is where it all began in June 1969, and the Gay Liberation Monument is just across the street in Christopher Park. Not far away, the NYC LGBT Community Center is where LGBT people first formed groups like ACT-UP and GLAAD, and features artwork like an original Keith Haring mural.

New York is also the birthplace of another civil rights movement: the struggle for women's equality. Seneca Falls is home to the Women's Rights National Historic Park and the National Women's Hall of Fame. Homes of famous suffrage leaders like Susan B. Anthony and Matilda Joslyn Gage can be explored throughout the region.

New York's pedigree in civil rights includes a leading role in America's abolitionist movement. Underground Railroad sites and homes of famous abolitionists like Harriet TubmanGerrit Smith, and John Brown are open for tours. 

First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt is considered a human rights pioneer, and her Val Kill cottage retreat is preserved in the Hudson Valley. This property that she shared with her friends - including a lesbian couple, according to the New York Times - is just down the way from the Franklin D. Roosevelt National Historic Site with its mansion, presidential library, and museum. 

Fine art lovers can discover where history-making artists were born, lived or did their work, from Jackson Pollock in Long Island to founders of the Hudson River School of landscape painting and Edward Hopper in the Catskills and Hudson Valley. Performance art history is on display at the National Museum of Dance & Hall of Fame in Saratoga and the Louis Armstrong House in Queens.

Innovation is easy to come by in the Empire State, from the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright in Buffalo to revolutions in glass at the Corning Museum of Glass, photography at the George Eastman House and film at the Museum of the Moving Image.

Famous literature has historic roots here, from the birthplace of poet Walt Whitman in Long Island to the home of Legend of Sleepy Hollow author Washington Irving in the Hudson Valley, to Mark Twain Country in the Finger Lakes where the author created Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn.

Lucille Ball muralThe history of pop culture is whimsically represented, from the Bethel Woods Center for the Arts with its museum of the Woodstock Music Festival, to the Lucy-Desi Center for Comedy in Jamestown, a museum dedicated to TV's first couple of comedy.

Colonial and Revolutionary War history is captured across the Capital-Saratoga region, including at historical homes telling the stories of families that rival the best soap operas.

New York's vibrant Native American culture and heritage are on display at sites like Six Nations Indian Museum, the Iroquois Indian Museum and the National Kateri Tekakwitha Shrine & Mohawk Caughnawaga Indian Museum.

LGBT history is a proud part of Path Through History, an exciting new initiative highlighting the state's role in shaping the nation and the world, and showcasing the sites where that history lives on today. Create your own Path Through History at

Regional Links

Long Island:

Krasner-Pollock House and Study Center
Walt Whitman State Historic Site

New York City:

Stonewall Inn
Gay Liberation Monument/Christopher Park
Louis Armstrong House
Museum of the Moving Image
NYC LGBT Community Center
For an overview of NYC's LGBT landmarks, click HERE

Hudson Valley:

Washington Irving's Sunnyside
Franklin D Roosevelt National Historic Site
Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site
Edward Hopper House Art Center


Thomas Cole House 
Bethel Woods Center for the Arts


National Museum of Dance & Hall of Fame
Historic Cherry Hill
The Schuyler Mansion State Historic Site
Ten Broeck Mansion
Crailo State Historic Site


John Brown Farm
Six Nations Indian Museum

Central New York:

Gerrit Smith Estate National Historic Landmark
National Abolition Hall of Fame
Iroquois Indian Museum
National Kateri Tekakawitha Shrine & Mohawk Caughnawaga Indian Museum

Finger Lakes:

The Harriet Tubman Home
Women's Rights National Historic Park
National Women's Hall of Fame
Susan B. Anthony House and Museum
Matilda Joslyn Gage House
Corning Museum of Glass
George Eastman House and International Museum of Photography and Film
Trolley into Mark Twain Country

Greater Niagara:

Frank Lloyd Wright's Martin House Complex
Graycliff Estate


Lucy-Desi Center for Comedy

I Love New York Topic Links

History and Culture Information