Residents of New York City have something extra to celebrate this Pride weekend. Stonewall Inn, long credited as the home of the modern gay rights movement, has received official city Landmark status. The decision was unanimous, AMNY reports.
The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission is responsible for cataloguing and determining sites of historical significance in New York City. Greenwich Village community members have actively campaigned for Stonewall Inn to receive this distinction for decades.
Established in 1965, the mayoral commission works to foster civic pride, stabilize and improve property values, promote City culture to tourists, and promote and protect “the pleasure and welfare of people of the City.”
Located at 51-53 Christopher Street, The Stonewall Inn, is the site of the Stonewall Rebellion, and is one of the notable sites associated with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender history in New York City and the nation.
On June 28, 1969 a police raid at the bar resulted in active resistance from LGBT patrons, forcing the police to retreat into the bar, setting off five days of rioting and demonstrations with calls for “gay pride” and “gay power.”
Many credit the Stonewall uprising as a catalyst for a new phase in the LGBT Liberation Movement. Within a few months, in direct response to Stonewall, several activist organizations were formed in New York City, including the Gay Liberation Front and the Gay Activists Alliance.
“New York City’s greatness lies in its inclusivity and diversity,” commission Chairwoman Meenakshi Srinivasan said before the unanimous vote. “The events at Stonewall were a turning point in the LGBT rights movement and in the history of our nation.”
The Stonewall is also part of the Greenwich Village Historic District, and earned a spot on the National Register of Historic Places in 1999.
The New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission oversees 32,743 landmark properties in New York City, including 1,347 Individual Landmarks, 114 Historic Districts with 21 Historic District Extensions, 10 Scenic Landmarks, and 117 Interior Landmarks. They recently launched a new user-friendly web portal at www.landmarks.nyc.