Source Profile: New York Complete Gay Guide 1975

Click to see the Flickr album of the entire guide. 

Click to see the Flickr album of the entire guide. 

Part of sourcing the data for OUTgoing is going through archives and collecting bars and such for the map. One such archive is the New York Public Library. In it, I found many guides – usually in small-run, half-letter print format – which have been incredibly helpful in OUTgoing

After photographing and organizing this guide, the results were hand-logged and added to the map. I'm working in the background on automating the OCR process a bit more – I've purchased Prizmo for optical scanning. This particular source was photographed poorly (crappy document photographer: me) and had to be verified by eye. In some ways, that process of hand-verifying brings me much, much closer to the material and gains me insights. But OCR is better because it gets more spots on the map, faster. The next source will be started in OCR. 

This source was a gay guide produced in 1975. I only saw that year for this guide, but there may have been more (let me know if you find another.) What I like about these guides (and there were many in the 70s) is the bias. Looking at two separately-produced guides gives mostly the same results, but with slight differences. One guide leaves out a leather bar, one leaves out a lesbian one. You see the preferences of the editor in them. 

But that aside, here are the 96 locations we got from this one guide. I'm amazed at how many weren't covered in other 1976, 1970 guides – and it means the turnover in bars was crazy in the mid-seventies. It feels like it was a REALLY competitive business environment, and led to bars coming-and-going quickly.

Enjoy the list. Click through to see each location on the map.

* Everything is Manhattan, unless marked with a borough.  Dates are approximate until confirmed. 

> Flickr album of guide