The LGBT History Project was launched at London's Kia Oval
Cricket Ground, yesterday.
Using Wikipedia's own software,users were invited to log on and
enter stories, memories and knowledge of British LGB&T
Suggested topics include arts, sport, business, health, press,
people and pubs and clubs.
This new site has already attracted entries about crime,
politics and legislation, as well as one contributor specialising
in bisexual culture, and another in South London's gay groups.
The site aims to records social memories of our day, the nations
changing attitudes to same-same relationships and notable people in
history that LGB and Trans people can draw upon as role
One fascinating article is about "The Ladies of Llangollen", two
noble women who lived together as a married couple and dressed as
men in 1780s Wales. They became so famous they were visited by the
Duke of Welling, Josiah Wedgwood, William Wordsworth, Shelly, Byron
and Walter Scott to name but a few. They were also painted by
famous artists of their day. One portrait hangs in the National
Museum of Wales, Cardiff and their house in Plas Newydd is open to
The site is looking for people from all over the country to record
what they remember and know of their experience.
Founder, Jonathan Harbourne said "it's great that attitudes
towards homosexuality are becoming more acceptable in many places
in Britain. In another 10 or 20 years, I don't want people to
forget the struggle and the fight that won us our equalities and
freedoms. But I don't want it to be all doom-and-gloom either - as
a perceived minority we not only stood out against injustice, but
often shone out, we often led the way in music and clubs, we
celebrated our differences with the word 'Pride' becoming
synonymous with being LGB&T, and we stuck together during the
health crisis we faced raising millions of pounds.
"This makes our culture creative, generous and supportive. My
aim is that this site becomes an history "time capsule", a resource
to people and academics in years to come."
Open days at libraries and academic institutions are being planned
for LGBT History Month, February 2012.
These interactive workshops will introduce people to doing
research and examining 'primary sources', and how to write articles
for the wiki. People are also encouraged to record their coming out
stories - the reactions of friends and families.
The new wikimedia web site is devoted to British LGB & Trans