Stonewall Riots

Courtesy of Abby Drue

It's been 50 years since the Stonewall Uprising began in New York City. In the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, police raided The Stonewall Inn, a popular gay bar in Greenwich Village. While accounts vary of what exactly sparked the rebellion and violent clash, what resulted was a series of protests and demonstrations — which led to the first Pride Parade in 1970.

But Stonewall, when it happened, had little effect on gay life in the South. It was another raid, a little more than a month later, that sparked outrage and galvanized Atlanta's LGBT communities. On Aug. 5, 1969, police raided a screening of Andy Warhol's Lonesome Cowboys at Ansley Mall Mini-Cinema. 


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Most American cities celebrate LGBTQ Pride in June to commemorate the Stonewall Riots. In 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a bar in New York's Greenwich Village. The raid led to organizing and demonstrations by activists like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera.

 

Atlanta and Savannah both celebrate pride in October, which is national LGBTQ history month. We spoke with Jamie Fergerson, executive director of the Atlanta Pride Committee, and Dusty Church, festival director for Savannah Pride. They discussed the past, present, and future of pride in Georgia.

 


June is Pride Month. This year, Atlanta’s Pride Committee and the LGBT Institute at the Center for Civil and Human Rights are partnering with the Fox Theatre to celebrate the 49th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, which ignited an equal rights movement in what became the LGBT community. We spoke with Emmy Award-winning comedian Wanda Sykes, who’s headlining a comedy show at the Fox in celebration of Pride Month.