2015 ONE Archives Annual Report
December 21, 2015
Download the report here.
Message from the Director
What is the future of our queer past? Did you know the first lesbian magazine was produced by the young secretary Lisa Ben at RKO studios in 1947? Did you know that Lisa Ben and Jim Kepner were members of a science fiction underground that served as a cover for early LGBTQ activism? Did you know that Nancy Valverde, an East L.A. barber, was repeatedly arrested for “masquerading” or crossdressing? Or that José Sarria, aka Empress I of San Francisco, ran for supervisor in 1961, twelve years before Harvey Milk? Or that, if it weren’t for the financial support of transgender philanthropist Reed Erickson, ONE might not exist today?
Despite the incredible achievements in LGBTQ rights over the past decade, much about the history of our movement’s struggles and heroism remains unknown or unacknowledged. The mission of ONE Archives is to ensure that this history is not lost, but more significantly, that it is accessible to everyone.
ONE is not just an archive or a library; it is a living cultural institution whose mission is to preserve, disseminate, and activate queer history and culture. We are not just a place to store historical materials; ONE is a space where scholarly research intersects and informs cultural production and exchange through a range of public programs and exhibitions.
ONE has relationships with queer groups and archives across the globe and we seek to inform the world of our community’s achievements and our aspirations. Each year we add new collections to the archives, making vital resources available to scholars, students, artists, filmmakers, and the general public. The work of these researchers influence trends in education, public policy, politics, popular culture, the arts, and the humanities.
The future of our queer past depends not only on the One Institute and ONE Archives at the USC Libraries, but also on your support and involvement. Donate historical materials, volunteer, let folks know about us, or contribute financially so ONE can continue to grow and thrive as the world’s largest and most accessible LGBTQ archive for years to come.
Director, ONE Archives at the USC Libraries
Board Member, One Institute